Most Thai students begin their career planning just before graduation or shortly after. Ideally any graduate should want two to three job offers from top international companies and organizations in the region but if they wait until the last term or after graduation, they may be forced to take any position that is offered.
Our advice: Plan to start your career search in your first year and not the last. We strongly recommend the following 4-step planning process.
Year 1/Step 1: Know Yourself
Determining your interests, skills and values may take some effort but it is vitally important. You have already begun this process by selecting a major which, in turn, will influence your career path; however, there should be a good match with who you are and what you will be doing. Do you seek adventure or do you like predictability? Do you enjoy interacting with others or do you prefer getting the job done? Are you more analytical or more emotional?
Many of the questions you will encounter in an interview will deal with you as a person and how well you may fit in an organization. The recruiter will not only judge if you have the necessary expertise but also assess your personality traits and attitude as to whether you will enjoy working in that particular company.
Your college experience should be a time of change and growth. You are responsible for shaping who you will become. This process should require a self assessment of both your strengths and weaknesses in determining a career path.
Year 2/Step 2: Explore Your Options
Starting this process early will afford you the time to explore all of your options. While some students are certain about their future professions, others may not be.
MUIC’s focus on the liberal arts offers a wide range of disciplines and an opportunity to explore different interests. Some students have changed their majors after having taken a class that they really enjoyed. MUIC is one of the few Thai programs in which you can change your major after having started your studies. Another option is to select a minor which enables you to either specialize or broaden your expertise and skills.
Your exploration should also include the web resources available. The Career Development Unit will provide you with links to interesting websites. Do you want to travel as part of your future job? Look for an industry or a position in an organization that will allow such a possibility. Looking at starting salaries for different jobs may also be helpful in deciding your future career. Adecco published a Thai salary guide on its website for free (http://www.adecco.co.th).
Year 3/Step 3: Prepare Yourself
Employers are seeking well-rounded individuals who can offer more than just an academic transcript. Students who participate in conferences and competitions and are actively involved in student clubs and the Student Association are at a clear advantage. Volunteering for community outreach projects is an additional asset. All of these activities demonstrate that you are motivated, responsible and dependable, traits that top organizations look for when hiring.
During this step of the process you need to organize your activities in writing and frame them in terms that demonstrate you have developed important life skills. We recommend that you attend one of our workshops in preparing your Curriculum Vitae (CV). You will have it on hand for applications to internships, summer employment or scholarships.
This is also the time to develop your interview skills. The Career Development Unit provides training workshops and the annual MUIC Job Fair allows you to engage in actual interviews. You may also have an opportunity to participate in international conference and exchange program that will require an application, a cover letter and an interview.
For those who are planning to pursue their graduate studies, this is the time to start looking at potential schools, particularly entry requirements, including exams. The best graduate schools in the world expect more than just an impressive transcript. They, too, are looking for outstanding students who have contributed to their communities and demonstrate leadership qualities.
Year 4/Step 4: Job Searching
At this stage you need to learn to market yourselves. To begin this process, you need to condense and consolidate your uniqueness, educational experience, past activities and skills by updating your CV.
If you begin early enough before graduation, you will have more opportunities to target top companies and international organizations and will be able to accept the best offer. The web is an important resource to easily target companies and learn about them.
In addition, the Career Development Unit has direct connections with a number of organizations through professional relationships and MUIC alumni. New job openings through our network are posted on this site, so bookmark it and visit it regularly. Remember to always check out an organization’s website in preparing for an interview.