From my vantage point as a practitioner working directly with students, I also think Chat GPT can bring an element of fun and spontaneity to our work. It is simple to use, and the results are fast, if not always nuanced. Perhaps making it ideal for the TL: DR generation? And, for an undergraduate who is coming up to their final semester, it’s as good a place to start as any.
Continuing the vein of career exploration, while the book encompasses a range of job search elements that the AI can assist with, the first chapter “Find your way” has proven to be the most useful for myself and the team here at UVic.
For example, in 'ball rolling’ work, as a practitioner I often field these common questions: How do I find my passion? What are my skills? How can I find a focus? What can I do with my major?
We are often encouraged as career educators to try and turn the tables, answer these questions with questions. Following this idea, I have introduced Chat GPT during short class visits where I have students pose these four questions to the AI:
1. What skills does a MAJOR student have? (insert your major)
What interests does a MAJOR student have? (Insert your major)
From here the goal is to start to narrow the focus:
2. Generate 10 specific job titles that could be a good fit for me based on:
My Favourite Skills:
It may seem like cheating, a short cut for a complex problem. But based on previous experiences, getting students to take practical steps with this kind of exploration in group settings is a challenge. In Jeremy’s words, the approach of asking Chat GPT to get some ideas flowing can “break through analysis paralysis”.
And then, the field of focus is narrowed even further:
3. Please tell me about a particular day for a INSERT JOB TITLE and the kinds of people who tend to enjoy this role
4. What are three specific ways I can test my fit with each of the following roles: INSERT ROLES
This approach works remarkably well to promote engagement, discussion, and individuality. I add a warning to clarify that Chat GPT can make mistakes, and to encourage students to analyze and verify important information.
Once a solid potential pathway or two have been identified, students are much better equipped to maximize their engagement with a career educator to develop next steps in their research, discuss networking options and get some experiential direction.
This is just one example of many of the where and how AI can support both the scalability, personalization, and quality of engagement with a career educator on campus. And, of the inspiration, I have taken from Schifeling’s book.
While there are a lot of unknowns still to navigate in the era of AI, both for career centres and post-secondary institutions, I can’t deny, that AI helps. Why not embrace it?
Richard Myers, CCDP is a Career Educator with the Career Services team at The University of Victoria. And is a member of the CACEE West RAB. He has worked in various roles within the career development field since 2005, including stints at UBC, SFU and the YWCA.