Read job postings. Write a résumé. Practice interview skills. Network.
To the extent that any educational facilities teach you how to find a place in the labor force, that’s it. Pretty accurately, you could call this “How to get a job.” That is, how to get offered a job. With the national unemployment rate at whatever it’s at, that’s certainly a valuable skill these days, but lots of people have the chance to aim much higher — at least high enough to get two job offers. Then what?
You’re pretty much flying blind if you rely on the same folks that taught you about one page resumes and how to talk to recruiters at job fairs.
I think every college student would be well-served to have some guidance on how to choose a job or a career. And the problem starts way before college; high school students pick colleges, which are long-term expensive decisions, basically on a whim. It all seems kind of insane looking back.
Company cultures, hierarchies, job roles, products, businesses and dozens of other factors that will impact your daily life, probably making the difference between being happy and miserable at work, are never formally taught or even discussed. I think it’s one of the reasons that startups seem so magical to so many, because they appear to break rules when they just do things differently and the rules were never there in the first place.
I’m not convinced that a vocational education is the best fit for most, but I do think that some sense of practical decision-making would be immensely valuable and hopefully prevent a lot of people from finding new ways to kill time for eight hours, five days per week.