Career Adventure: Your Guide to Personal Assessment, Career Exploration, and Decision Making / Edition 4

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The Career Adventure captures the experience of career development by ushering the student through three key areas: self-assessment, career exploration, and the job campaign. The book's format offers students an unsurpassed approach to career decision making and confidence building. Most significantly, the entire spectrum of issues is covered succinctly and in a welcoming, encouraging tone. The exercises, integrated throughout the book, create smooth transitions for students and the case studies capture the essence of each chapter's subject muter. As the text progresses, students engage in a compelling process of progressively more challenging objectives that encourages decision making, exposes them to the complete model of career planning and builds confidence. It is a true career adventure!

  • Features include:
  • Majors Exploration
  • Web Links
  • Student Bulletin Boards
  • Career Advice
  • Tips from Successful Students
  • Faculty Resources
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

Will be submitted to:

--The Career Development Quarterly

--Journal of Career Development

--Journal of Career Assessment

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Product Details

Meet the Author

Dr. Susan Johnston has worked in the field of career planning for over 30 years as a career advisor, consultant, scholar and a professional shaping her own experience of career. As such she brings a wealth of experience and insight to the increasingly volatile process of professional growth and development. Her span of experience in this field includes working at community college, four-year University, in private practice with clients and as a consultant with public school districts. Currently she is working with faculty at a professional military education institution directing the Office of Institutional Research, Analysis and Planning. Her scholarly interests include continuing professional development through communities of practice and resilience in high stress, high stakes settings.

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Table of Contents

Pt. 1 Self-Assessment: Learning About Yourself 1
1 Creating Your Dream 3
2 Discovering Yourself: Motivations, Life Stages, and Values 7
3 Continuing Your Self-Discovery: Skills, Personality, and Interests 21
Pt. 2 Career Exploration: Learning About the World of Work 47
4 Exploring the World of Work 49
5 Networking: Establishing Contacts and Support
6 Decision Making and Goal Setting 87
Pt. 3 The Job Campaign: Organizing Your Search 101
7 Designing Your Resume and Cover Letters 103
8 Interviewing with Confidence 135
9 Developing Job Leads 153
10 Trying Out a Career 169
11 Continuing Your Adventure 181
Appendix 1 185
Appendix 2 191
References 194
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Choosing a career is an exciting process of self-discovery. It draws you out into the word to explore careers, and sets your path with decisions that will result in insight, growth, and reward. This journey is most fulfilling when undertaken with a belief in yourself, a willingness to risk, and a sense of humor! The adventure does not end when a career is chosen—the career is always a work in progress and continues to change as the adventurer grows and changes.

The most important resource in any career adventure is you-the person who explores new vistas and makes the career choice. The Career Adventure: Your Guide to Personal Assessment, Career Exploration, and Decision Making, Third Edition, is designed to actively engage readers in planning their own careers. The exercises and activities found throughout the book make the adventure an interactive one; you are encouraged to consider thoughtfully each step of the journey, building confidence as you see your decisions yield results.

The book is divided into three parts. Part I, "Self-Assessment: Learning About Yourself," focuses on self-knowledge and discovery. Students explore career dreams, motivations, values, life stages, abilities and skills, personality, and interests. Examining these areas begins the process of discernment that is critical to making a meaningful career choice.

Part II, "Career Exploration: Learning About the World of Work," guides you through the career market and trends and investigates government resources and other publications. Important discussions of networking and decision making, accompanied by practical exercises, help readers set goals and then formulate plansand develop skills to achieve those goals.

Part III, "The Job Campaign: Organizing Your Search," looks at the job search, examining the details of resume writing, interviewing and marketing skills, and how to gain hands-on experience through internships and volunteer work. You will have an immediate opportunity to apply new skills when working through the exercises. Even students who do not plan to enter the full-time job market immediately will benefit greatly from the information in Part III.

This third edition of The Career Adventure takes a fresh look at the adventure of career planning and the influence of information technology on the process and landscape of career development. Perhaps no field has been influenced as profoundly by the explosion of information as has career planning. Finding information is easy. Indeed, we're buried in data. Chapter 4, Exploring the World of Work, seeks to simplify and focus the process of gathering data by offering guidelines for productive use of the Internet. Along) with Web sites of proven value (at the end of each chapter and in Appendix 2), 1 recommend search techniques that minimize "Web wandering." These techniques make the Internet the valued tool it should be, instead of a maze of career cul-de-sacs.

Additionally, the infusion of technology into the workplace spurred explosive growth during the 1990s. While growth has leveled, we are still likely to find ourselves on an economic roller coaster as we cope with energy needs and extend the infrastructure of technology to every corner of our culture. This edition emphasizes steady, step-by-step progression toward goals that flow from your growth and your ability to calmly go with that flow, without being at the mercy of economic trends.

Suggestions for group discussions appear throughout the book, giving you the opportunity to interact with peers, instructors, administrators, and the community. Internet resources and pertinent Web sites are offered throughout the book to expand your information base and help you become familiar with using electronic resources, necessary skills in today's career/job marketplace. This real-world exchange connects the classroom to the larger world, in preparation for the actual job campaign.

The world around us plays a dramatic and constantly changing role in our career adventures. However, it is the adventurer who guides the journey and determines the outcome. Recognizing what information is needed, knowing how and where it can be found, and understanding what can be done with it are the keys to achieving any and every goal. The Career Adventure was written to help you acquire the skill and confidence to see the goal and achieve it!


This book could not have become a reality without the generous support and encouragement of the following people. I would like to thank them for their efforts.

Dr. Lamarr Reese, Terry Maiwurm, and Leonard Banks supported my growth and development as a career counselor. They were exceptional resources in the development of particular ideas for the book and in helping me to better understand cooperative education and its value to students. Brenda Krueger and M. L. Smith shared with me their ideas about personality development and cooperative education. I would also like to extend my appreciation to Tony Allen, who was invaluable in helping me more fully understand the significance of diversity in career issues. A big thank you to Bruce Anderson for guidance on electronic transmission of resumes. My thanks also go to Jon Sergeant, the Bureau of Labor Statistics, for assistance with labor trends data.

Karen Witt, Ann Hall, and Dodie Munn allowed me to enjoy the special relationship that comes from shepherding students through career decision making in the Adult Re-Entry classes. The staff members of the Career Planning and Placement Center, the Experience-Based Education Department, and the Learning Resources Center of Sinclair Community College aided me in locating materials and helped me to understand more fully the challenges that students encounter when making career decisions in a college setting. Their help was invaluable.

My thanks to Dr. Priscilla Mutter, who taught me about letting go and finding balance. My special thanks to Del Vaughan for the opportunity he gave me to work with students under his leadership—a peak experience as a ,career professional. I would also like to extend my gratitude to Dr. Jean Cook for her active promotion and support of my goals and dreams and her continuing belief in my ability to make them a reality.

I am very grateful to the following reviewers, who read this material in various stages of its development and offered ideas as to how it might be improved: Mikel J. Johnson, Emporia State University; Carole J. Wentzel, Orange County Community College; Jan L. Brakefield, University of Alabama; Pat Joachim Kitzman, Central College; Eve Madigan, Los Angeles Trade Technical College; Dave Sonenberg, Southeast Community College; Pablo Cardona, Milwaukee Area Technical College; Katy Kemeny, Lansing Community College; Cliff Nelson, Hinds Community College; and Maria Mitchell, Reading Area Community College. Students will find the book more readable and more helpful as a result of their efforts.

I would also like to thank Sande Johnson, Cecilia Johnson, Pam Bennett, JoEllen Gohr, and Gay Pauley for their guidance and support as editors and production coordinators of this book.

Finally, I would like to thank my parents, Claude and Marcia Kelnhofer, for instilling in me a strong work ethic and a basic respect for all types of work. Their influence led me to a deeper understanding of the meaning of work and career in our growth and development as human beings.

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