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Jepson Career Development Cycle

The Career Development Cycle is a decision-making model which will help you recognize where you need guidance in your career search. At any time in the cycle, it is helpful to meet with a career advisor to develop your search strategy. Knowing where you are in the cycle will help your advisor help you figure out the best strategy to get you to the next quadrant.


To know what you want to pursue, you need to know yourself. Begin by asking yourself questions. What is important to you? What are your interests, strongest skills and values? How does your personality or preferences impact the choices you make? Meeting with a career advisor can help you start this discussion and discover more resources or assessments in the Office of Alumni and Career Services that can assist you during the self-assessment phase. 

Explore Options

A leadership studies major and the skills you learn are applicable in a variety of settings, organizations and industries. To know what is possible, start exploring possible career options. Gather additional information about an area. Examples of this type of exploration are: trying new courses, volunteering in or researching a career field, conducting information interviews, participating in career programs, including Career Expos, or Spider Road Trips to gain new perspectives.

 The required Jepson internship is another opportunity to explore any industries or professions of interest.

Narrow Options

Once you’ve gathered some preliminary information whether through research or internship about a profession or industry, think about how this knowledge integrates with your self-assessment. Reflect on your internship experience. Did the organization address populations, issues and areas that are of interest you? Do you want to explore other opportunities in the same industry or similar positions in other fields? Are you interested in learning even more about this area or have you decided that this isn’t a good match for you? Either way, it’s good to know this about yourself and your career goals.  Completing the Jepson internship learning contract will help you know whether you are ready to implement your career goals or return to the self-assessment quadrant. Working with Office of Alumni and Career Services and conducting informational interviews with Jepson and University alumni will assist you in narrowing your interest.

Implement Goals

Once you’ve narrowed your interest areas, it’s time to implement your internship/job/graduate school search strategy.

Building Your Brand

Everything from your emails to class attendance shapes how faculty, staff, and potential employers view you. Here are Career Services resources to consider when presenting yourself.