Graduate Career and Professional Development

NIU Career Development Pathway

The NIU Career Development Pathway (CDP) follows your progress from early in your program through degree completion. The CDP, hosted on our Community Portal, offers centralized access to graduate career and professional development resources and services through the following stages. Become a member today!


Plan your career pathway through UNIV 601, a variable (0-1 credit hour) course developed in the Graduate School. The course provides you with a personalized package to empower you with a data-informed approach to career planning.

Explore Careers

Explore how your graduate academic program aligns with real-time labor market data, and discover occupations and specializations that interest you. Identify skills considered essential by employers for geographic regions of interest, future growth projections and demand, salary premium skills and more.

Build Skills

Use the skills data for occupations and specializations of interest to facilitate conversations with faculty and staff advisors about your program of study (e.g. courses you could take within and outside your department to obtain high-impact exposures to needed skills). The Graduate School can also identify options on the LinkedIn Learning platform to help you round out your curricular program and improve you skills alignment with employer demand.

Make it Happen

Optimize your LinkedIn profile and resume to stand out with recruiters. Get connected with key alumni in jobs that interest you. Learn effective strategies for conducting informational interviews. Learn how to leverage professional societies, organizations, conferences, etc. Develop a network that will advocate for you. 

Individual Development Plan

Your Individual Development Plan (IDP) brings your pathway into focus. The Graduate School provides an electronic IDP template to help you better visualize your pathway and use it as a tool to facilitate conversations about your career and professional development goals.

Contact Us

The Graduate School
Williston Hall 100

Phone: 815-753-0395
Fax: 815-753-6366

Office Hours

8-11:30 a.m.
12:30-4:30 p.m.

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