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Educational Planning: Developing a plan for success

  • Help clients to assess career values, interests and skills; investigate career options and envision a career path; identify and apply for jobs; network; interview; develop resumes and cover letters, and establish integration between work and personal life. 
  • Use a variety of tools including assessment exercises, interest inventories, personality tests and client interviews (in-person or long-distance via phone, Skype or video chat) to help identify appropriate options for consideration. 
  • Help clients identify obstacles impeding progress toward the establishment of career plans and coach clients on ways to overcome these challenges. 
  • Make referrals to psychologists or therapists if clients are unable to engage in the career-planning process or finalize decisions due to anxiety, depression, or low self-esteem. 

Education, Training, and Certification

Career counselors usually acquire a master’s degree in counseling or career development. Career counselors can be certified by organizations like the National Board of Certified Counselors.

Career Counselor Skills

  • Career counselors must have the ability to put a client at ease and engender trust to facilitate sharing of personal information.
  • Strong interviewing and active-listening skills are required to extract information from clients. An analytical mind is required to make connections between an individual’s personality type, abilities, interests, values, and appropriate career options.
  • Career counselors need strong research skills to find information about careers and educational preparations related to client needs.
  • They must be able to clearly convey information to individuals and groups about job search strategies, approaches to interviewing, and resume and cover letter development.

How a Career Counselor Can Help Your Job Search

Career counselors and coaches provide assistance with identifying and exploring career options, selecting from career choices, changing careers, resume and cover letter writing, focusing and targeting a job search, and with helping job seekers through the job search process.

Working with a career coach is a process that can help you understand yourself and where you fit best in your career, education, and life.