Explore & Develop | Career & Life Design Center | Fort Lewis College

Explore & Develop

Assess yourself to help you develop a career path

Learn what you enjoy, what you’re good at, and what you value most in your life or work environment. You can start with our PathwayU tool. With it, you can assess your interests, personality, workplace preferences, and values. This can help match you with the right career. 


What interests do you have you could translate into a career?

  • Which projects or accomplishments have been most fulfilling and why?
  • What has been your favorite class to date and why?
  • What has been your favorite internship/job? Extracurricular activity? Hobby?
  • In your previous jobs, what did you like and dislike?

Downloadable worksheets and online resources:


Understanding your personality preferences is essential in choosing a fulfilling career path. Reflect on the questions below as a first step in thinking about your personal traits:

  • How would your friends or family describe you?
  • How and with whom do you prefer to spend your time?
  • How do you like to approach new projects or activities?
  • How do you typically make big decisions?
  • How do you prefer to go about your day


You have gained competencies in many areas throughout your life. Think about your accomplishments and the talents that enabled you to succeed. Common skill areas include interpersonal, communication, leadership, and organizational.

Transferable skills are areas of strength you can transfer from one environment to another regardless of the type of work. You may have attained transferable skills from:

  • Volunteering, not-for-profit organization, or community service
  • School organizations or service learning
  • Job shadowing
  • Part-time jobs or internships
  • Academic courses

According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers, the top 10 personal qualities employers seek are:

  • Leadership
  • Ability to work in a team
  • Written communication skills
  • Problem-solving skills
  • Strong work ethic
  • Analytical/quantitative skills
  • Technical skills
  • Verbal communication skills
  • Initiative
  • Computer skills
Additional worksheets and resources:


Values play an integral role in career satisfaction. Do you prefer risk or stability? Variety or routine? Teamwork or autonomy? Competition or collaboration? 

These tools can help you identify your values and understand your family and cultural influences:


Your choice of major does not dictate your career choices

Selecting a major and choosing a career are not the same thing. For example, some students majoring in the arts or humanities decide to pursue careers in business.

Check out Choosing Your Major on the FLC website. This site will help you identify your priorities, pinpoint your proficiencies, and explore your passions. You can learn the skills to succeed in a career through any major or program offered at Fort Lewis College.

Research the industry that compliments your major

Education and skill requirements

What educational background or specific skills does this industry typically require? Will you need a graduate degree to get a job?

Typical positions

Where does an entry-level or experienced employee fit within this industry? How do responsibilities at the entry-level differ from more senior positions?


Day-to-day job operations

What does a typical day look like for an employee in this industry? How do the roles of the various members of an organization differ within the industry?

Industry trends and developments

What is the future of this industry? Is it expanding? What are the trends?

Personality traits/experiences valued by the field

What traits are necessary to succeed? Are there shared experiences that many of the people in this field have?

Salary information

What type of salary can you anticipate, given your education and experience level? What is the salary range for the field as you progress?


Hiring cycles and recruiting practices

When and how does the industry hire? Some industries have unique recruiting practices. For example, engineering, finance, and consulting companies often recruit during the fall semester, while non-profits generally hire later in the spring.

Geographic location

Are opportunities in your desired field primarily located in a specific area of the country or world? Would you be happy living there?

Showcase your skills and find your career fit with Forage

Forage's virtual work experience programs replicate work at top companies and help you gain the skills to be successful when applying and working there. In only 5-6 hours, learn the relevant tools necessary to complete a typical work day at that company. Forage's virtual work experience programs are 100% free, open-access, and self-paced. No experience or application is required!

Sign up for a free student Forage account

Explore more career resources

Explore career resources

As you explore each career field, ask yourself:

  • Can I see myself working in this career area?
  • Does it match my interests as well as I had anticipated?
  • Will it afford me the lifestyle I seek?
  • Does it use my top skills and match my top values and personal strengths?

Career exploration resources:


The Fort Lewis College Career Network is a valuable resource as you research and discover careers that match your skills and interests. Career conversations with alumni, upper-level students, and others can help you determine what major might be a good fit for you. Utilize the Fort Lewis College LinkedIn network, have Career Conversations with professionals in your field of interest, or speak with upper-level students about their major. 

Sample questions about majors:

  • Why did you choose your major?
  • What skills have you gained with this major?
  • What are some of the possible team projects in this major?
  • What does your four-year schedule look like? Are there courses offered only in specific years or semesters? (In which case, you would need to plan carefully, especially regarding studying abroad.)
  • Do you regret choosing this major?
  • What do you want to do after you graduate? (For alumni: How did your major relate to the career you pursued)?
  • Who are the most interesting professors and classes you took?
  • Is there anyone else with whom I should speak for additional information?

Work on your career readiness

We are committed to helping you develop these eight competencies defined by the National Association of Colleges and Employers that help students prepare for their careers:

  1. Career & Self-Development
  2. Communication
  3. Critical Thinking
  4. Equity & Inclusion
  5. Leadership
  6. Professionalism
  7. Teamwork
  8. Technology