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Relate Majors to Careers


Major & Career Decision Guide

The relationship between major and career is indirect and complicated. Deciding on a major, whether you are choosing one or contemplating a change, can be a daunting task, especially when you are trying to connect the major to some future career.  

The purpose of a liberal arts education is less to give you hard job skills than to teach you how to do things like write well and think critically – transferable skills that are essential in any job.

D id you know that studio art majors can become doctors or lawyers (if they complete the requirements for medical and law school respectively)?  

Take the first step toward making major and career decisions; click on the Guide below. This Guide will  provide you with confidence in decision-making and bring you closer to choosing a major that fits your interests, strengths and personality. 

decision guide

What can I do with a major in...


Explore Occupations


The Career Development Cycle model was created to help students better understand the process of career development. You should touch upon each part of this cycle throughout your college experience. Over time, you will find yourself building up both your resume and your confidence in a particular career direction.



Career Competencies

Career competencies are the skills required to successfully perform a job. Until now, “career readiness” has been hard to define, which made it difficult for leaders in higher education, workforce development, and public policy to work together effectively to ensure the career readiness of today’s graduates. 

The National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE), through a task force of select professionals,  identified eight competencies associated with career readiness.

Read More


Research Occupations

Gathering information about careers and professions can be a difficult task. We have provided you with a number of resources we trust for information about the professions you may be interested in pursuing.

Networking & Mentoring 


We offer a variety of ways for you to learn from alumni and friends about careers: Formal mentoring programs, Alumni Association LinkedIn Group page, alumni career articles in Stony Brook Matters, and alumni virtual panels.

Career Communities Mentoring program (six month) 

The Career Communities Mentoring program takes place from October through April and will require 4-5 meetings.   During this program, mentees will set direction for career goals, create an Individual Development Plan (IDP) and participate in a job shadow experience. The Career Center provides mentees with the needed support to make the most out of this mentorship experience. 

Mentorship is an important part of career success. Mentors give mentees guidance and insight, while working on action-oriented career goals; this process helps build confidence and enables better career decisions.  Please note: we'll do our best to match you with an alumni mentor within career of interest.


Career Advisors Network (micro-mentoring program)

If you are interested having a one-time career conversation (micro-mentoring) with a SBU Mentor, this is the program for you.  A SBU Mentor is a professional who volunteers his or her time to network, provide advice, and provide career insight for students and recent alumni. 

This program is about making connections and sharing information – not about asking for jobs/internships. Attend one of our workshops  to learn  more about this program.


Check Handshake for upcoming  Networking for Career Success  workshops.

Network with Alumni on LinkedIn

Stony Brook University alumni can be found around the globe in all different industries! Learn more through Alumni Stories and by connecting with alumni on  The Stony Brook Alumni  LinkedIn.  
Stony Brook University Alumni Association    Linkedin Group 
Use Linkedin to reach out  and network with alumni and friends.    The Career Center will   reach out to  SBU Mentors and initiate your career conversations.  Attend our Networking for Career Success  workshops to learn more. Check the Handshake"Events" calendar for upcoming workshops.  

Additional Ways to Learn From SBU Alum:

Alumni Career Virtual Panels

 Visit Handshake for upcoming virtual events.



Assess Yourself


 Have you heard about a “career test” that will tell you exactly what majoror 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, which in turn can help you figure out what’s best for you.

SUGGESTED ACTION   Take one more of these career assessments and review with one of our career coaches.

 LEARN MORE: The SBU Career Assessment Guide


 A thorough self-assessment will consist of   4 factors:


What qualities do you value in your work and overall lifestyle? What motivates you and why? Some people want variety, autonomy, and flexibility, while others need security and prestige. There are no right or wrong answers here, so think of your ideal scenario.


O*Net Online - Values |   Virginia Education Wizard Career Interests & Work Values Assessment |  Values Assessment


  Job satisfaction and success is closely linked to being interested in what you do. With an eye on future fulfillment, consider accomplishments, tasks or projects at which you excelled and which created a sense of pride and satisfaction.


CareerOneStop - Interests  |

O*NET Interest Profiler


Personality traits play a major role in job satisfaction and success, and being the right “fit” involves numerous factors. Personality inventories and assessments offer insight into how your personality compares to others and how you prefer to work.


16 Personalities MBTI Test |  

Keirsey Temperament



Review your accomplishments to uncover skills critical to your success. Then think about how they connect to a potential career. This will help you understand what to market in your search.


CareerOneStop - Skills Matcher |  -  O*Net  Online Skills Assessment  


Learn about what employers are looking for.