Career Preparation for Student-Athletes

Career Preparation for
Preparing Job Search
Career Development Center
Bucknell University
Presentation Format
• In this presentation, student-athletes will learn:
– Strategies for “marketing” athletic participation on
resumes and cover letters
– Strategies for utilizing professional references
– Strategies for preparing for interviews
• How should student-athletes highlight athletic
participation on a resume?
• How should student-athletes discuss skills developed
through athletic participation on a cover letter?
• Who should serve as professional references for
• How should student-athletes prepare for interviews?
Personal Characteristics Employers
Seek in Job Candidates (NACE)
Communication Skills (verbal)
Strong Work Ethic
Teamwork Skills (works well with others)
Analytical Skills
Problem-Solving Skills
Communication Skills (written
Interpersonal Skills (relates well to others)
Computer Skills
Source: NACE Research: Job Outlook 2011
Employer Evaluation of
Career Preparation
• Employers evaluate candidates based on
Education and academic background
Work experience
Co-curricular activities
Volunteer experience/Community service
Communication skills
Student-Athletes & Transferable Skills
Time Management
Taking Criticism
Coping with Setbacks
Performance under
Student-Athlete Resume
• General Format (Contact Information, Education, Experience)
• Highlight Student-Athlete Experiences
– Summary of Qualifications
• Student-athlete with leadership, teamwork, and interpersonal skills who maintained
academic success in accounting while devoting 25 hours per week to practice, training,
and competition as a member of a Division I volleyball team.
– Education Section
• Relevant Courses if applicable
– Experience Section
• Public Speaking if applicable (to media, children, etc.)
• Coaching, Training (highlight communication and motivational skills)
• Co-Captain or Captain (demonstrates maturity, leadership, responsibility)
– Awards/Achievements
– Volunteer/Community Service
• List experiences with team/campus as well as personal involvement
• CDC Staff offers assistance in resume development – get feedback!
• More information:
Resume Examples
Student-Athlete Cover Letter
• General Format (Contact Information, Employer Contact
Information, Letter Format)
• Tailor the cover letter to the position
• Research the company/Reference your fit
• Highlight Student-Athlete Experiences
– Discuss skills like time management, leadership, teamwork,
adaptability, and discipline – be specific about how you
developed these as a student-athlete
• CDC Staff offers assistance in cover letters– get feedback!
• More information:
Cover Letter Examples
Student-Athlete References
• Send a separate reference page with your resume and
cover letter
• List 3 professional references (not friends, family)
– Employers
– Professors
– Athletic Department Staff (coaches, trainers, administration)
• References should speak positively about your
character, work ethic, responsibility, and maturity
Student-Athlete Preparation
for Interviews
• General Preparation (research company, research position)
• Practice, practice, practice!
– Meet with CDC Staff for a Mock Interview
• Discuss participation in Division I athletics – benefits, skills
– S.T.A.R. : Situation – Task – Action – Result
• Our coach told us that the Athletic Department wanted each team to
participate in a new community service event. I volunteered to work with
staff to develop this event for my team. I helped set up an afternoon trip to a
local school where we read to second graders and helped them with reading
skills. The school and students enjoyed our visit. Since this first visit, a
group of my teammates and I have been reading to the students on a
consistent basis. I enjoyed helping to set up this project as much as I did
reading with and talking to the second graders.
– Give insight on time commitment to athletics, which explains why there
is less direct work experience than a non-athlete peer
• Resumes, Cover Letters and Interviewing are
similar for all candidates
– Use athletic participation to set yourself apart from
your peers
– Get feedback on how to highlight your athletic
participation on resumes and cover letters
– Practice how to discuss your athletic participation in
• Learn how to “market” yourself to others!
CDC Resources
• Career Consultants
– One-on-one appointments for career counseling and advising
– Assist with resume, cover letters, interview preparation
Externship Program
Internship Search/Job Search Assistance
Networking Assistance
Job Fairs/Internship Fairs/Networking Events
Graduate School Preparation (Pre-Law, Pre-Health)
Contact the CDC
Botany Building
[email protected]
Monday – Friday
8:30am – 4:30pm
• NACE Job Outlook 2011 Survey