Job Search

Take advantage of: career fairs, workshops, Nittany Lion Career Network, on-campus interviewing, and career counseling.

Read more:
-Career Planning Process
-Resume Writing
-Cover Letter Writing
-The Value of Networking
-Networking for Job Search

Clarify Your Career Goals

Identify Your Job Target

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Plan and Organize Your Job Search

Create Effective Job Search Tools

Your resume and cover letter are often the first impression you make as a professional or potential graduate student.

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Use Multiple Job Search Strategies

A job search involves more than one strategy to communicate with prospective employers. Some industries favor the use of some strategies over others. Review all of the strategies to determine which works best for your field. No matter your interest, networking remains one of the top strategies. As you engage in the various job search strategies, consider working with a career counselor as your job search coach.
Read more: Job Search Methods (PDF)

Job Search Strategies:
Networking Internet
Nittany Lion Career Network Professional Associations
Career Fairs State and Local Employment Agencies
Targeted Searches - Employer & Industry  


Networking Guidelines

Penn State Career Connection

Penn State Career Connection is a LinkedIn Group focused on connecting Penn State students with employers on career-specific issues. You will be able to discuss general career topics such as resume writing, interviewing, job search strategies, etc. with employers. You can also join a subgroup relevant to your career interests.


LionLink is a networking program designed to help Penn State students make professional connections and gain useful information to assist with career decisions and job searches.

Nittany Lion Career Network (NLCN) Nittany Lion Career Network logo

Nittany Lion Career Network is the primary online resource for connecting students with employers.

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Career Fairs

Fairs give you the opportunity to meet with recruiters in person to explore opportunities and to build networking contacts. 

Targeted Searches

A targeted search involves identifying key criteria you seek in your future position and using resources to compile a list of specific employers who meet those criteria. To develop a targeted list, consider your answers to these questions:

There are various resources to assist you with developing a targeted list of employers, including:


The internet is useful in obtaining information related to your job search: job postings, employer data, salary statistics, employment and workforce trends, and much more. Knowing which sites are most useful and how to identify high quality information, can help you use your time wisely. Even though the internet may be helpful in identifying opportunities, it is not recommended that you rely on this strategy alone.

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Professional Associations

Most fields have one or more professional associations that represent their career area. These sites are geared toward the practicing professional, but many also have an area for students interested in that discipline. Professional association sites are useful in learning about the profession and identifying employment opportunities in the field. To learn about the associations related to your career field, search online or use Career Information Center resources.

State and Local Employment Agencies

Each state has a government-sponsored employment agency to assist residents in finding employment.  In addition, there are private agencies that offer short- and long-term employment opportunities. Be sure to research each agency to understand potential fees and policies for involvement with the agency.

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Evaluate Job Offers

When receiving written employment offers, read the offer and make sure that you understand the details. Various aspects of the offer may be negotiated depending on industry.  Work with a career counselor to determine if negotiating is appropriate.

Prioritize What is Most Important to You

Understand the Offer

If you have questions about any aspect of the offer, ask your contact within the organization. Employers are bound by ethical standards and should:

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Determine your Worth - Research Salary Information

Assess the Offer

Negotiate Offers

Accept or Decline the Offer

Ethical Considerations

One of the most difficult aspects of evaluating offers is that all offers may not be received at the same time.  As you prepare to interview, make sure that you develop questions about the position and organization which will help you to evaluate whether you want to accept this position if an offer is extended to you. As you receive an offer, you may have interviews scheduled with other organizations. It is appropriate to ask for additional time to consider an offer while interviewing with additional organizations. 

Ethical Standards After Accepting an Offer

If there are extenuating circumstances that require you to withdraw an offer, talk to a career counselor about the ramifications and way to handle this kind of situation.

Job Posting/Company Verification Disclaimer

Read the full disclaimer which describes the shared responsibility among Penn State Career Services (including University Park and Commonwealth Campus career offices) and internship/job seekers in researching and identifying potential concerns about the legitimacy of employers and their respective postings.

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