Pandemic Challenges Create New Opportunities for Virtual Career Development

The last year has brought immense changes to the global economy, job market, and education systems. Students, especially college students, have had to adapt to a completely new way of learning.

Higher education is an indispensable opportunity for students to gain the skills and education they need to prepare for their dream careers. Microsoft, along with LinkedIn, committed to a goal of helping 25 million job seekers globally gain the skills they need to land a job in this new economy. Now, they’re taking that same focus to higher education students with a new tool called Career Coach in Microsoft Teams for Education.

At Green Key Resources we’re big fans of Microsoft Teams, having spent most of our time on Teams for over the last year working remotely. Pair that with the fact that we spend our days helping people achieve their career dreams, it’s no surprise that we were thrilled to discover this new tool.

Graduating from college and starting your career is a challenging and exciting time. Career Coach empowers students by providing personalized guidance and resources to navigate their career journey, thereby preparing them for the transition from student to working professional.

Eleanor Donoghue, Head of Career Services at University College Cork said in Microsoft’s blog post announcement, “Career Coach is embracing innovation and technological change, enhancing skills to enable our students to be resilient, innovative, and globally connected—capable of coping with technological and other transformational changes ahead for the future of work. Students can learn at their own pace, in their own time and be supported on their bespoke career development pathway.”

It’s never too early to start setting career goals and Career Coach helps higher education student from the first day at their university all the way to their graduation. Students can set up a profile to acknowledge their current skills from their coursework and other experiences – just like on LinkedIn – and identify skills that they want to develop in their college careers.

With its connection to LinkedIn, students can connect with alumni, recruiters, peers, and faculty to start networking early and show off their achievements, a practice that is often uncomfortable to adapt once you’re well into your career.

Having action-items and a focused approach to addressing your career goals is a great practice, no matter where you’re at in your career. Career Coach allows students to turn abstract aspirations into actionable, personalized steps to help them gain real-world skills, all while tracking their progress along their desired career path.

This type of innovation makes us hopeful that the next few years of college graduates will feel confident as they enter the workforce, despite a rather untraditional education they’ve experience in the last year.

How do you track your career goals? What skills do you wish you had learned before entering the workforce? Any advice for new graduates? Share your thoughts with us on our LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter!

Photo by Avel Chuklanov on Unsplash

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