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We provide in-person, Google Hangout chat or phone appointments to help you define a career path, research career options, conduct mock interviews, review resume and cover letter, and begin a job search or target employers in a specific industry.

What is career coaching and counseling?
Career counseling helps clients develop a mindset of career development. Career counselors teach others how to navigate and develop a well-rounded understanding  of the self, the world of work and how the two connect.  Without a doubt the number one barrier to us achieving success in any endeavor will be ourselves. While  the number one predictor of success is being clear on what we really want and why, and then being relentless in the pursuit of turning our goals and dreams into a reality.  Essentially, coaching is about helping people get out of their own way to get what they most want: achievement, fulfillment, and peace of mind.
The role of career coaching

The role of the career coaching and counseling is to ask the big life questions

  • What do you really want? In your career? In the balance of your life?
  • What is standing in your way of achieving the 'success' you want?
  •  How do you stand in your own way?
  • What are you ready to change?
  • What are you finally, ready, commit to?
Make an appointment

To make an appointment or schedule a follow appointment call 631-632- 6810; to schedule an  appointment with  Nikki Barnett. Click here to fill out an  Intake Form at least 24 hours before appointment.


Do you have a quick question about your resume or cover letter? Feel stuck or need some motivation to get back on track with your job search? Need some inspiration to help you think more holistically about your career or professional development? You're in luck! icon

Every Thursday from 11:30am - 1:00pm (starting January 26 through May 18), connect with the   alumni career counselor and ask your career and/or professional development questions via Google Hangouts . This virtual chat lasts 15-20 minutes. For longer career conversations, please feel free to schedule a one-on- one career consultation by calling 631-632- 6810.

How do I start a hangout conversation?
Note: If you're using the Hangouts Chrome Extension, Hangouts conversation windows started at
1. Open Google  Hangouts.
2. At the top of your Hangouts list, click Search.
3. Type 
4. Type your message, and press the return key on your keyboard. 



We offer a range of career education resources for recent, mid-level and experienced alumni to help navigate the job search process and manage career development.

Lunchtime Learning Webinar (12- 1pm EDT)

We offer a series of webinars to help you manage professional growth lunchtimeand  work-life balance. We give you the latest tips and tricks on how to create  new habits for personal and professional growth. The series covers a range  of career topics.

Career Author Webinars (8pm-9pm EDT)

Alumni Career Services has partnered with TalentMarks, an online careerauthorcareer  management system which offers a lineup of the nation's top career authors  to give you the knowledge needed to transition into any stage of your career.  Participate in any of the FIVE career webinar series, live or recorded. 

CareerDiscussions help individuals and organizations thrive,  enhance your soft skills, provides job search  advice from the world’s top authors, supports retirement  planning, and helps graduates transition to the world of work.

Access these webinars by creating a profile online. Click here, then click the "register" button.

Archived Webinars

We sponsor a monthly alumni webinar/workshop series featuring a variety of career topics. All webinars are archived for viewing 24-7. 

Browse Archived Webinars





Determining career fit requires a combination of reflecting on past experiences (to understand your likes, dislikes, values and skills) and acquiring career knowledge (by reading and/or talking to professionals working in careers of interest).

Your experiences enable interests to evolve and grow; therefore, career exploration is a life-long process of learning about yourself and careers.

Career development is a self-initiated process with support and resources provided the Career Center.  At SBU, we use a 4-part model (information, experience, reflection, career) of career development to help you organize your career development planning activities. Read more  here  and   here !




Getting experience can involve anything from taking a class that interests you to  joining a club or completing an internship. Experiencing something will allow you to distinguish between your likes and dislikes. Further, this will help you discover where your strengths and/or weaknesses lie.


Reflection is a great way to understand your experiences more fully. Whether using a career log, journal writing, or  talking with a career counselor, this practice can help you organize your thoughts, better understand yourself and create career goals.

Career (Concept)

The career direction you think you want to pursue after graduation. This may be as specific as “I want to be a pediatrician” OR may be more broad like “I want to work with children.”

Information (Gathering)
Doing occupational research through online resources, meeting with alumni through the Career Advisors Network (CAN) to talk about their career experiences, or observing others doing a job you think you would like to do someday.




Have you heard about a “career test” that will tell you exactly what major or career path you should take?

That idea is a little misleading, because no website or piece of paper can truly know who you are and what’s best for you.  However, there are self-assessment tools that can help you understand yourself better.  

As illustrated in the picture, ideally, a thorough self-assessment will consist of   4 factors :


Your   values: what’s important to you in a career?  Values Assessment 

Your   interests: what do you like doing or thinking about?  O*NET Interest Profiler 

Your   skills: what are you good at, or could you get better at?  Functional Skills Assessment 

Your   personality: how do you prefer to interact with the world?  16 Personalities MBTI Test  





Gathering information about careers and professions can be a difficult task. We have provided you with an easy way to organize information about the professions you may be interested in pursuing.




 Compare occupations and learn about careers and industries.

O*Net Online

O*NET OnLine has detailed descriptions of the world of work for use by job seekers, workforce development and HR professionals, students, researchers, and more!

Occupational Outlook Handbook

Welcome to the Nation's premier source for career information! The profiles featured here cover hundreds of occupations and describe What They Do, Work Environment, How to Become One, Pay, and more. Each profile also includes BLS employment projections for the 2010–20 decade. 

Professional Association Finder

Locate national professional associations by occupation or industry served. Contact associations to find professional development opportunities, and keep current on changes in your industry with Professional Association Finder.

Learn about industry news and trends

  • Long Island Business News:
  • Office of the Professions:
Hoover's Academic Database

Hoover’s provides students with current financial and directory information for over 18,500 U.S. and foreign companies. The site contains company overviews, history, products/operations, competitors, and much more—it’s a great place for you to find introductory information about companies that interest you.


NACE collects job offer salary information to compile a list of salaries by degree level and other factors.'s cutting edge technology is integrated with actionable data and content, empowering customers to make the best decisions about pay.

learn from fellow alumni

  We offer a variety of ways for you to learn from alumni and friends about careers. Opportunities include: Career Advisors Network (CAN) Program (informational interviewing and job shadowing), Annual Networking Mixer, Alumni Sharing Knowledge Blog, and Tour Your Future Series.

Join CampusTap

CampusTap is our NEW networking and mentoring platform for the CAN program that allows you to make meaningful connections and exchange career knowledge with alumni and faculty/staff mentors, in career communities.  Join Now to indicate interest. 

Join Now




Career Advisors Network (CAN) Program

80% of jobs are found through personal relationships. Build quality professional connections by using a career research technique, such as informational interviewing and job shadowing, to increase your career knowledge and expand your network.

The CAN program is designed to ease the transition from college to career by connecting students and recent alumni with CAN Mentors - experienced professionals representing various career fields. The goal of this program is to increase your career knowledge by conducting an informational interview with a CAN Mentor.

A CAN Mentor is a professional who volunteers his or her time to network with Stony Brook students and recent alumni to provide advice and career insight. Connecting with a CAN Mentor gives you the chance to ask questions about a major, field or career path, and learn from other people’s experiences. Connecting with a CAN Mentor is about making contacts and sharing information - not about asking for a job/internship.  

How do I connect with a CAN Mentor? Students are expected to make first contact with mentors through the platform ( CampusTap) by sending your mentor a request. The platform helps by suggesting people based on shared interests, tags, certificate areas as well as other keywords associated with your profile.





Informational Interviewing

An informational interview is a brief meeting, with someone currently working in your field of interest that offers you an insider’s perspective. The purpose of an informational interview is not to get a job. It’s to better understand a particular position or industry and make potential connections in the field.

 If you request an informational interview with a CAN Mentor, he/she will expect something more structured and focused than an informal chat. Treat the informational interview as a business meeting. Prior to the interview, research the company or career and develop a short list of questions that you would like to have answered. For a sample list of questions, visit About Careers.


Job Shadowing

This involves shadowing a professional through a normal day’s activities and may include informational interviews, a tour of the facility, and participation in actual office projects. This experience is a great way for students and alumni to get an insider’s view of a position and an organization while gaining professional skills and expanding their network.

You will be learning more about the job by observing and asking questions. You will follow around a professional for the duration of the time you are shadowing. You may be taken to meetings, observe projects, and/or meet with other individuals in the organization. 


Additional Ways to Learn From SBU Mentors

Annual Students and Alumni Networking Mixer

The Stony Brook University Alumni Association and the Career Center organizes a large-scale networking mixer to help promote and facilitate connections between students and alumni; and also provides opportunities for alumni to alumni to network. This event usually takes place in March.

Alumni Sharing Knowledge (ASK) Blog

Making educated career decisions can be difficult at any stage of career development. The ASK (Alumni Sharing Knowledge) Blog is intended for Stony Brook University students and alumni to learn career knowledge and get advice from experienced alumni, working in various career fields, about lessons learned from their career experiences.

Tour Your Future Series

Tour Your Future Series  offers alumni the opportunity to attend alumni employer site visits for ONE DAY. Alumni hosts will talk about their organization, industry, internships, and job opportunities. This is a chance for alumni to get the inside scoop and literally get their foot in the door. See Handshake for future tours.

Select past tours: CA Technologies, Bloomberg, The Federal Drug Administration (FDA), Google

Sign up for alumni events on Handshake!

Questions? Email





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