Identify a support network of faculty and advisors within your discipline to whom you can turn for guidance and advice to develop and critique your degree plan and outline the major courses and electives you plan to take each semester.
Cultivate a relationship with these mentors for ongoing assistance. Seek them out as soon as an issue arises.
Identify at least three strong references from your professors who know your scholarly abilities before you graduate.
Identify strong references from supervisors who know your real world experience and work skills.
Become acquainted with offices on campus that provide academic support services for additional advising, study skills, workshops and learning centers, for example: to improve your study skills, boost confidence on exams and manage your time better you should check out the Seeds of Success Workshop.
Review course descriptions of both required and elective courses before the course begins (each semester) to ensure you are mentally prepared and that it is an appropriate choice. In the instance an elective is not appropriate, adjust your schedule ASAP.
Attend an Orientation for new students. Make a list of the resources and organizations you would benefit from learning more about.
Research a club or organization related to your major or career interests during your first semester and become an active member in your second semester.
Assume leadership roles during your first semester and become an active member in your second semester and contribute your talents to an organization by serving as an officer, chairing a committee, and/or organizing a major event.
Find part-time, internships and/or a summer job to gain work experience preferably in your career field. This will help you develop confidence, real world experience and good work habits. Handshake is one resource you can use.
According to a Career Builder poll, 77% of hiring personnel consider "soft skills" just as important as tech expertise or field knowledge needed to perform a certain job. The top-five qualities employers are looking for:
Strong work ethic
Recognize that you likely have a minimum or 15-30 minutes in an interview to "sell yourself." Self-critique the skills you have. What additional skills do you plan to acquire or enhance?
Ask someone you value to identify two or three skills they suggest you focus on enhancing - be open to their feedback and write down their comments. You can only get better by acknowledging areas you can improve.