Degree Digging: 10 Ways to Revive the Skills from Your Academic Past
We’re encouraging you to revamp the educational and job skills list from your academic past to benefit your personal and professional future.
Dusting off those trusty skills from college, grad school or your first few jobs may be just what you need to reinvigorate your career. If not, it might be the key to helping you discover what you really want to be when you grow up, and then actually get that dream job once and for all. Tech entrepreneur and author of Passion & Purpose, Daniel Gulati says, “The time to diversify is now. With permanently new dynamism in the job market and the elimination of the career ladder, the days of signing up for a 20-year, pre-configured journey to the top are over.
Instead, success will be marked by flexibility and agility—how quickly you can adapt to the world around you and how quickly you can seize exciting new opportunities.” We all want great things for ourselves that come from our career. From personal fulfillment to financial rewards, you deserve it all. So we’re encouraging you to do a little degree digging with these 10 ways to revamp the educational and job skills list from your academic past to benefit your personal and professional future.
1. Make a job skills list of your forgotten experience
Were you once a cashier? Add cash management to your list of credentials. Did you excel at statistics in college but haven’t used the skills since? Refresh them a bit and then consider putting them to use. Think back on your past including classes you took and jobs you had and reflect upon the skills you used way back when that you haven’t dusted off in a while.
2. Make a list of the skills required for the job/career you’re seeking
Already know your dream job? Grab a piece of paper and a pen to make a list of the skills required to do well at that job and then compare with your newly enhanced work skills list of abilities.
3. What skills would you like to develop further now?
Are there skills from your past that you feel have gotten rusty? It could be a good time to build upon to bring them up to bring them up to the present.
4. Check out the Occupational Outlook Handbook
The Bureau of Labor Statistics publishes a great deal of information about what skills are required for a variety of jobs. This publication includes salary information, future growth projections and other handy data to have when you’re considering a career change.
5. How can you leverage your academic past today?
Consider how your old skills could work for you in today’s job market. If your undergraduate degree is in psychology but you never took it further, you clearly can’t start your own therapy practice tomorrow, but you could use your interest in the subject and knowledge of what makes people tick in marketing or public relations. Think outside the linear box and don’t be afraid to explore.
6. Take a refresher course
If you enjoyed school (or even if you didn’t because people often find more value in it as an adult), research local adult education classes or find an online course in something that interests you and could serve to increase your skills in a chosen area. Many colleges in the U.S. have online classes and sites like Corsera offer a large selection of free online college courses from colleges around the world.
7. Clean out your closet
Organizing your old notebooks and papers from school might just remind you of a once forgotten passion. Be open to exploring it and adding it to your job skills list.
8. Take a summer workshop
Many community centers and city recreation facilities offer single-session or multi-week workshops in a variety of skills. Always wondered if you’d be any good at woodworking? Want to brush up on your writing skills? We’re betting you could find a workshop for that.
By finding a volunteer position that puts your past skills to use, you can get a refresher on those abilities while helping others and adding current, relevant experience to your resume.
10. Teach a class
If you want to revive a creative skill you’re particularly exceptional at, like writing or painting, look into teaching a beginner class at your local community or recreation center. This will help you rekindle a passion and could potentially lead to that dream job you never thought was possible.
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