Exploring majors or careers? This is for you!

(this post was written by Vickery Viles, COCC Careers, Advising, Personal counseling)


Do you find yourself undecided about your major?   Are you interested in connecting your education to a career path?   Looking for scholarship money?  Do you want to know which schools offer your program?  This web site can help!


An excellent resource in the area of career exploration is the Oregon Career Information System (OCIS). COCC licenses this tool for use by its faculty and students. This is a national database tool that allows you to take the CAREER EXPLORATION steps below with quick and easy access to regional information like:

– tests that show your career strengths;
direct links to the schools that offer your programs; 
information about how much education or training is involved;
links to scholarships for your field or background.


Here is the simple getting started information for the OCIS.


Stop by or call (383-7200) the CAP Center for the username and password
Log into OCIS either through cap.cocc.edu, select Career Services, then Oregon Career Information System.  Select “Sign In for CIS Internet.” 
Once in, you can set up your personal account so you can save resources as you discover them. To do this, click  Create “My Career Planning Portfolio” in the upper right corner of the page.
Inside your portfolio, in the main body of the page, you will see options to    “Explore You”; “Explore Careers”; “Search for Schools”;  or “Explore Majors and Careers.”


Exploring careers:  Here are the basic steps to a structured career exploration process.

Step 1.
Understand yourself

The first step to exploring careers is to evaluate yourself. There are many effective assessment tools to help you clarify and understand your values, interests, style, and preferences. You can access these assessments on your own, in a class or workshop, with a career facilitator, through the Online CIS program, or through other avenues.


Step 2. Understand careers

There is lots of great information about occupations and careers and much of it is available free, online. What jobs are growing?  How much is the starting salary? What are the common work requirements? The CAP Center/Career Services web site has links to web sites that can help you connect with accurate regional occupation information: http://cap.cocc.edu/


Step 3. Evaluate your research, make a preliminary decision

Combine your preferences with occupational information, access to training and education to set your preliminary career goal.


Step 4.   Plan for your goal, revisit your decision

As your planning becomes more defined towards your career destination, continue to gather information about yourself and your direction. You may need to revise your goal or adjust your plan as you progress.  Remember that your advisor or a trusted teacher may have insights for you. 


One Response to Exploring majors or careers? This is for you!

  1. Lynne Hart says:

    Wow, Tina. I really like the look of the web site picture you attached.

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