Whether you're about to start your university studies, are working towards an undergraduate or graduate degree, or are a new alum, here are some of the many ways that you can move forward to connect yourself with professionals and find your path towards your career! Most of these resources are free -- just add your time and ideas!

Schedule a Career and Internship Advising Appointment

As a current student of the School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning, you have your own Career & Internship Coordinator!

SGSUP Alumni are able to schedule an appointment with the Career & Internship Coordinator until six months after their graduation. After that Alumni will be directed to schedule an appointment with a Career Specialist through ASU Alumni Career and Professional Development Services.

You can schedule a phone or Zoom career/internship advising appointment here

Career/Internship Appointment Services:
  • Resume and/or Cover Letter Review
  • LinkedIn and/or Handshake Profile Review
  • Mock Interviewing
  • Learn How to Earn Academic Credit for an Internship
  • General Advisement on Internship and/or Job Searching

Appointment Late Policy: If the student does not attend their appointment within the first 15 minutes it will be cancelled. The student will be responsible for rescheduling the appointment.

See below for more tips and tricks to bolster your skills and resume to prepare you for the future:

Build your skills

ASU Continuing and Professional Education - Free courses on a wide variety of topics

Free GIS software & online training – ASU Libraries’ Map and Geospatial Hub offers access to Esri GIS software and online training, as well as links to online training in QGIS, JMARS, Leaflet and more.  Also explore Google Earth and its mapping capabilities.

Free Adobe Creative Cloud for students - Read how to obtain a free license for the Adobe graphics suite as an ASU student

CourseraOnline courses developed by 190+ leading universities (including ASU) and companies. Some have a charge, but free options include themes of career development, graphic design, GIS and more.

Skillshare.com – Resource for lessons on design, illustration, photography, business analytics and more. Free classes

Linkedin Learning (formerly Lynda.com) - Video courses with an emphasis on technology and business. Requires a subscription fee, but available for free through many public libraries (For example, Chandler Public Library offers free access to Maricopa County, AZ residents)

Join a professional organization

Why join a professional organization?  You can gain exposure to the latest initiatives and ideas, and meet professionals. Consider volunteering to help!

American Meteorological Society (Student membership $20/yr, includes membership in local chapters)

American Planning Association (no cost to students, includes membership in local chapters like APA Arizona)

Arizona Association of Environmental Professionals (free to students)

Arizona Geographic Information Council (no charge to join the listserv)

Association of American Geographers (Undergraduates $38/yr, Graduate students $49/yr)

National Association of Environmental Professionals (Student membership $60/yr)

PHXGeo Meetup (an informal group for those in the Phoenix area who like maps, GIS, OpenStreetMap, cartography and anything in between.  Membership is free to all!)

WTS – Advancing Women in Transportation (Student membership $30/yr)

Learn from professionals

Video: Lightning Talks on Geography, GIS & Urban Planning Careers - Five lively 10-minute talks, presented at ASU's Career Navigator, October 2019

Video: Careers in Urban and Environmental Planning - A panel discussion by a diverse group of Arizona planners, from SGSUP's Planning Career Fair, April 2019

Career Advice for Emerging Planners  - Here's career advice based on a survey of 834 planners across the US (conducted by the Arizona chapter of the American Planning Association)

Planetizen Training for Urban Planners - An extensive series of vidoes on numerous urban planning themes

For examples of geography, GIS and urban planning careers, and more advice from professionals, visit our Careers in Geography, Careers in GIS and Careers in Urban and Environmental Planning pages.

Boost your resume

A resume is the first tool in an internship or job search. Here are some resources:

Create a digital portfolio

A portfolio is a living and changing collection of records that highlights and showcases samples of your best work, along with life experiences, values and achievements.  A digital portfolio can be a useful tool in marketing yourself to employers, to professionals that you'd like to interact with, or to colleges and universities where you'd like to pursue a degree.

  • What is a digital portfolio? What should I include? Look here!
  • Here are portfolio tools that are free to ASU students and alums: Digication or Google sites.  

  • In Digication, start with an easy-to-use SGSUP Template designed especially for our students!  Here's a preview of the template, and here's how to work with it:
    1. Create: Follow the “Create a Portfolio from Scratch” Instructions found here: Create a Digital Portfolio, and search for template “SGSUP."
    2. Customize: Add, edit, and remove pages, add text and media, upload files, record video, and design the portfolio to your liking.  Find how-to videos and lists at Digital Portfolio Help Resources.
    3. Publish: When you first create your portfolio, it will be private -- visible only to you.  Once you've added content and customized the portfolio to your liking, change your Privacy Settings to “Public." Now you can share your url with potential employers, admission committees, or any other organizations that would be interested to know your professional story!

Build your professional presence with LinkedIn

Why should you be active on LinkedIn?  Learn some reasons in this ASU CPDS blog.

Here’s a checklist for building a strong student or new graduate LinkedIn profile, and a step-by-step video

Do you need a professional headshot?

A professional headshot is a photograph you use to create a personal brand of who you are. Professional headshots usually focus on your upper body including your head and shoulders. Your professional headshot often creates the first impression for a hiring committee, business colleagues, and customers to form of you.

At this time, ASU does not offer a service for students to have their professional headshots taken for them. However, it is recommended to watch the following short video to know the best tips for taking a professional headshot using a smart phone.

Volunteer

Many nonprofits could benefit from expertise that you have -- whether creating a map, gathering or analyzing data, or finding new ways to reach out to community members.  Find an organization that advocates for something you’re passionate about, and reach out to them. For example, a GIS student helped a local conservation organization analyze their membership, producing a report on how and where membership had grown.  A planning student worked with a nonprofit to understand the process of organizing an annual community event, and wrote up a handbook that will allow groups in other locations to host similar events. Not sure what organizations exist in your community?  You can find out a great deal from a web search; and Idealist.org or  Volunteer Match may provide additional ideas. This could develop into a for-credit internship, too!

Professional organizations can also use help from students. Volunteering with a professional organization is a great way to build connections with professionals, while you build skills. Check out a list of planning/GIS and geography organizations in the previous section of this page. Our school also hosts student organizations that offer great professional development opportunities!

GISCorps, sponsored by the professional organization URISA, coordinates short-term, volunteer-based GIS services to communities in need worldwide.  You can learn about the initiative at https://www.giscorps.org/, and can apply to become a volunteer at https://www.giscorps.org/become-a-volunteer/

Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team is an international group dedicated to humanitarian action and community development through open-source mapping. Learn the basics of OpenStreetMap; then volunteer on any HOT project. Connect with YouthMappers ASU to meet other students involved in this initiative.

TIP: If you volunteer, keep a record of the hours you spend and your responsibilities. These hours can contribute to 'experience' requirements for government jobs especially, and jobs of any kind!