By Abby Weingarten
Novo Collegians are getting the royal treatment this fall when it comes to intensive career planning—from the first year of enrollment all the way to graduation—with the Novo Career Advantage.
Developed by New College’s Center for Career Engagement and Opportunity (CEO), this new four-year roadmap for undergraduates consists of simple, professional development steps that give students a leg up in the ever-evolving job market.
“This is the framework we are using to help students tell their stories in a competitive way,” said CEO Director Dwayne Peterson, adding that the goal is for all undergraduates to complete the program. “We are helping ensure that students are career-ready, with the communication skills they need to make a successful transition after graduation.”
The skill-building program is as follows:
Step 1: Explore (by contract 2)

  • Take the Focus 2 Career Assessment to explore areas of concentration (AOCs) and career options
  • Set a career exploration appointment with a CEO career coach
  • Complete a Handshake profile
  • Explore options for resume-building experiences (internships, research experiences for undergraduates (REUs), study abroad opportunities, campus leadership options, jobs, volunteer work and independent study projects (ISPs) with a faculty adviser and a career coach

Step 2: Prepare (by contract 4)

  • Participate in the Communicating Skills in Writing experience (a resume/curriculum vitae (CV) writing or review appointment with a student career assistant or career coach)
  • Participate in the Novo Network Mentorship Program or networking appointment with a career coach
  • Create a LinkedIn profile to network for contacts and experiences

Step 3: Prepare, Part II (by contract 6)

  • Participate in the Communicating Skills Verbally experience (a mock interview with the CEO staff)
  • Set a Strategic Career Planning appointment with a career coach
  • Have at least one resume-building experience completed (internships, REUs, study abroad opportunities, campus leadership options, jobs, volunteer work and ISPs)

Step 4: Take Action (starting by contract 7+)

  • Attend the Fourth-Year Kickoff event
  • Have a fourth-year check in with a career coach
  • Update and upload a resume on Handshake
  • Update a LinkedIn profile

Throughout the entire New College experience, students will:

  • Gain experience through internships, research, REUs, ISPs, jobs, volunteer work and campus leadership positions
  • Explore global scholarships and fellowships to support professional aspirations
  • Meet professionals in careers of interest through job shadowing and outreach
  • Attend employer/graduate school networking events

“There is no doubt in my mind that New College students are gaining rich skills and experiences already (the fact that they have to do three ISPs, internships, research, etc.),” Peterson said. “But what students need are the tools and skills to effectively communicate those experiences in the context of their professional goals.”
Because career planning is such a complicated process, the Novo Career Advantage helps break it down into “sizable chunks” for students to digest and understand, Peterson said.
“Being a student is not enough; in today’s competitive environment, students must develop other skills along the way to successfully meet their goals and transition into meaningful work or continued studies at graduation,” Peterson said. “This is the College’s ultimate goal for all students.”
For more information on the CEO and a downloadable Novo Career Advantage checklist, visit
Abby Weingarten is the editor/writer in the Office of Communications & Marketing.

Founded in Sarasota in 1960, New College of Florida is a top-ranked public liberal arts college and the state’s Honors College of Florida. New College prepares intellectually curious students for lives of great achievement by providing a highly individualized education that integrates academic rigor with career-building experiences. New College offers 45 undergraduate majors in arts, humanities and sciences, a master’s degree program in applied data science, and certificates in technology, finance, and business skills.

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