“How to Get a Job” StuCo at CMU

I recently proposed a student taught course (called a StuCo) titled “How to Get a Job” as part of my work for the Career Center at school. It was approved–the course number is 98-171A & B. I have a course number!

Here are my favorite passages from the syllabus:

Course Description:

By the end of this course, you will have 15 complete job applications to 15 real jobs you want. Every week you will turn in one complete application for review by professional career consultants, and will receive back an application with edits. This class is for students, of any major, at any stage in their search who want an active, supportive approach to their job, internship, or fellowship search.

This StuCo will cover how to find a job, write a resume and cover letter, interview, network, contact references, and negotiate for salary and benefits. With the support of professional career consultants, we will discuss how to plan a lifetime of fulfilling employment and support each other in our journeys to careers where we define our own visions of success.

How to Pass:

View from heaven

  • Seek help early and often.
  • Turn in every assignment by the beginning of class.
  • Use the weekly job application requirement to apply for positions you want.


Do it. The job search is much easier with friends who can help you hunt wild typos, massage emails of inquiry, and laugh at your interview face. This includes using the Career and Professional Development Center. If you had the money to pay someone else to write your resume, you wouldn’t be taking this class. But make sure to comment on your submission with the names of your helpers.

Technology Needs:

All course documents, including submitted assignments, will be posted to the group Google Docs. If you do not have an account with Google, don’t worry! We’ll take care of that during the first class. If you do not have a laptop, or it’s broken, or in Lithuania, we will relocate to a cluster. If you have a technical problem, communicate early and often.

Have an Accommodation? The teachers are thoroughly committed to an equitable learning experience. The Office of Equal Opportunity Services provides support services for both physically disabled and learning disabled students.  For individualized academic adjustment based on a disability, contact Equal Opportunity Services at eos@andrew.cmu.edu or (412) 268-2012. Communicate early, and often.

I am really proud of the syllabus. Got any corrections, ideas, challenges? Comments section!

Inspirational Quote:

“The task of the excellent teacher is to stimulate “apparently ordinary” people to unusual effort.  The tough problem is not in identifying winners:  it is in making winners out of ordinary people.”–K. Patricia Cross

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