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College and Career Planning

Ready to Set Goals?

Goals help you stay on track. Setting goals requires effort and meeting these goals requires hard work. You must believe in yourself. You may need to make changes to improve yourself or things in your life to achieve your goals. Complete this activity to help you set goals and create improvement plans.

Instructions

Fill in the information below. As you think about your responses, keep in mind that a well-crafted goal is SMARTER:

S – Specific: It’s clearly defined.
M – Measurable: You can measure if you achieved it.
A – Achievable: It's reasonable to accomplish this.
R – Relevant: It’s linked to the rest of your life.
T – Time-based: It has a specified time frame.
E – Expandable: It can grow with you.
R – Rewarding: It’s personally satisfying.

If you set goals, you are more likely to succeed. Stay positive as you focus on your goals. Adjust your goals as you change and improve!

Activity

1. Personal Goals

Personal goals focus on you; not your family, friends, or career. "I want to live to be 100" is a sample personal goal. Set a personal goal. Follow the SMARTER guide above.

2. Academic Goals

If you plan to pursue school or training, then set academic goals. Success requires a big commitment for adults with busy lives. Be sure to list sub-steps for goals, such as completing an internship. Make sure these are SMARTER goals.

3. Career Goals

Your career goal should be a specific occupation or self-employment area. Based upon the research and analysis you completed earlier, finish the statement below. Remember to write SMARTER goals!

4. Improvement Plans

Now take a few minutes to review your goals. Do they reflect what you know about yourself? If you see differences between whom you think you are and what your goals are, rethink and rewrite them or consider changing something in yourself.

Do you need to improve in some areas to achieve your goals? If so, create an improvement plan below. For areas where you will need to work extra hard or do extra work, enter the following information below:

Adapted from a career planning component of the intoCareers Career Information System.