First Year

Your first year is an ideal time to EXPLORE career interests. With your college career ahead of you, getting started now grants you time to learn about different career fields and become involved in courses and activities that prepare you to enter the field you choose. Most students come to Holy Cross without a clear idea of what they want to do, and even those who start off with a plan often change their mind. The Center for Career Development offers first year students many resources to help you discover your passions and set goals for your time spent at Holy Cross.

Explore Careers

Take the Strong Interest Inventory: The Strong is a widely-used career assessment tool that measures career interest and suggests fields and occupations.  To take the Strong, you must first consult with a Career Counselor. Log into Handshake and navigate to Career Center / Appointments to schedule a career advising appointment with a counselor. 
• Attend Career Development Workshops: The Center for Career Development puts on a variety of programs specifically for first year students throughout the year. Keep an eye on the Calendar for upcoming workshops and events.
• Participate in the Alumni Job Shadowing Program: The Alumni Job Shadowing Program is open to all class years and provides you with an opportunity to shadow an alumna/us in your career field of interest. Students are matched with Holy Cross alumni and spend ½-1 day shadowing during academic breaks. For more information on how to participate in the program contact Career Development at
• Apply to the Alumni Mentoring Program: The Alumni Mentoring Program matches students with alumni based on careers/industries of interest. As part of the program, students connect with their alumni mentor via phone, email or video throughout the academic year. Alumni mentors provide their mentees with guidance and support as students navigate their individual career exploration at Holy Cross. This program is open to students from all class years. To learn more about the Alumni Mentoring Program contact the Center for Career Development at or 508-793-3880. 
• Review Career Development self-help guides and online resources: No matter what career path you choose, the Center for Career Development has a wealth of online resources to help you learn more about and prepare for your career search.  Become familiar with our online resources early and make sure you are a prepared, informed candidate for whatever you apply to.
• Visit Handshake: Handshake is the Center for Career Development's online recruiting portal. Students may use this system to apply for full-time employment and internship opportunities as well as on-campus programs like the Alumni Shadowing Program, Washington Semester Program and Academic Internship Program.  Familiarize yourself with Handshake and keep an eye on the latest events and opportunities offered each week.
• Research Alumni: It’s no secret that Holy Cross alumni are wild about their alma mater.  Take advantage of their enthusiasm and desire to help by reaching out and learning more about what they did at Holy Cross and what they do now.  Meet with a Career Counselor to learn about the HC Network and how to reach out appropriately to alumni.
• Attend information sessions: The Center for Career Development coordinates events throughout the year that are hosted by employers, alumni and academic departments.  You’re lucky that these professionals come to YOU, so take advantage of their visit and benefit from their wisdom.  Access the Calendar for dates.
Join a Career Community: Explore career paths, identify opportunities and cultivate professional relationships that will shape your lifelong career journey. Get specific industry information such as alumni or student interviews, internship listings that are in that field, and most of all be a part of community of similarly interested students. To join a career community, log into Handshake and navigate to your Career Interests page. 

Explore Majors

Liberal arts students find fulfilling careers in just about every field due to their diverse coursework, flexibility and adaptability to succeed anywhere.
• Speak with professors, academic advisors or upper class students
• Meet with advisors in the pre-health, pre-business or pre-law programs, as appropriate
• Take classes that interest you and try new subject areas
• Attend academic department information sessions (see Calendar)

Explore Campus Life

Employers look for extra-curricular activities, athletics and/or leadership involvement.  First year students can strengthen and develop the skills employers look for by getting involved in the Holy Cross and Worcester communities.
• Join a campus activity, group or team that allows you to explore your interests
• Develop your leadership skills

Important Career Events for First Year Students

• Career Kick Off: The Career Kick Off takes place on the first day of classes in the Hogan courtyard.  This is an easy way to meet the Center for Career Development staff and find out what the Center for Career Development has to offer.
Summer Research Symposium and Internship EXPO: Be sure to attend the Summer Intern EXPO in the fall to see how Holy Cross interns spent their summer. Some of these internships could be yours in the future.
• Career Fair: Mid-September in the Hogan Ballroom.  The Career Fair is a great way for first year students to see what internship and job opportunities will be open to them in future years.  The organizations who attend love to speak with first year students about their company and learn what you’re interested in.  Dress is business casual, so put on something nice and stop by to look around.  For more information and a list of attending employers, visit Handshake.
• Departmental Career Panels:  Throughout the academic year the Center for Career Development partners with departments to host alumni career panels.  Alumni speak about how their major prepared them for the work they do now.  For those who are still undeclared, it’s a wonderful way to learn about different majors and see what fellow Crusaders have made of their education.

Come Say Hello!

  • Schedule an appointment: Meet with a Career Counselor to discuss your strengths, skills, interests and values, and how majors translate into careers. Schedule an appointment via Handshake. Once you log in, navigate to Career Center / Appointments. 
  • Contact us: Are you not sure how to get started? Visit us in Hogan 203, email or call 508-793-3880 and we'll happily direct you!