Visit a Career Center or Career Counselor

Day 12 of 30 Days to Your Dream Job

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Everyone can use a bit of help in his or her job search. However, you can receive valuable job search advice without breaking the bank.

Today’s task is to find an inexpensive, or even free, career counselor to help guide you in the beginning phases of your job search.

Career counselors can read and review your resume and cover letters, recommend networking opportunities and even help you find ideal places to job search.

Finding a Career Counselor

Below is a list of places you should contact to find an inexpensive career counselor.

Your College Career Services Office: If you are a college student or college graduate, contact the career services office at your school or alma mater. College students typically receive free college counseling sessions, and can often attend job search workshops and networking events.

Many colleges offer similar services to alumni; these services are often free, or cost a reasonable rate. Career services offices also tend to offer free information for student and alumni online, such as access to online job listing databases.

Your Alumni Network: If you are a college graduate, your college career services office (or your college alumni office) likely has some sort of alumni advisor network. Alumni who volunteer to join this network are willing to speak with you about your career-related questions and advise you on your job search.

Your Local Public Library: Many local libraries hold job search workshops or seminars, which are often free or reasonably priced. Some libraries even hold job clubs, which provide job seekers with support and advice. Ask a local librarian if your library has access to any job listing databases, or has any other job search materials.

Your Local Chamber of Commerce: Many chambers of commerce offer career or job fairs, workshops and various networking opportunities. Search the Chamber of Commerce International Directory for contact information.

Your State Department of Labor Office: DoL offices offer online and in-person employment services, including job fairs, a job database and other career resources. You can find contact information for your state department of labor here.

American Job Centers: The U.S. Department of Labor runs a variety of American Job Centers, or AJCs (formerly called One-Stop Career Centers). AJCs provide free career counseling, employment workshops, networking events and more. Find your local AJC here.

Private Career Counselor: If you can afford it, consider hiring a private practice career counselor. Before doing so, consult the National Career Development Association’s (NCDA) Consumer Guidelines for Selecting a Career Counselor. It provides an overview of the roles of a career counselor, training and credentials information, what you should expect and demand as a client, ethical practices and more.