Career Services

Career Services

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Compilation of hundreds of Queen's photos from the 2016-17 campaignIt All Adds Up

Reduce your stress.  Inform your future.

Have you ever thought:

  • "I feel like I'm constantly rushing but I'm never sure I'm doing enough."
  • "I'm afraid if I don't get involved in enough extra-curriculars that I won't get a good job or get into grad school."
  • "I'd like to try some different things...but I'm not sure what to let go of or how to choose what's 'best'."
  • "I sometimes feel overwhelmed by trying to be super engaged."

How about stopping for a moment to recognize and celebrate how It All Adds Up?

  • make informed decisions about how best to spend your time (which will look different for everyone)
  • develop confidence, knowing that if you are engaged in interesting things, you are developing skills, knowledge, networks  etc that will “add up.” 

To participate, students can visit booths around campus during the launch week at Queen's or at other events during 2019-20 such as:

  • Career Fair - September 2019
  • Fall Engineering & Technology Fair - October 2019
  • Summer Opportunities Fair - January 2020
  • Engineering & Technology Fair - January 2020
It All Adds Up 2018-19 is proud to partner with:


Join the campaign now! Post your picture using the hashtag #italladdsup + #queensu on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook

This year (2018-19), the campaign is happening at many university and campus career centres across Canada!  Join your friends here at Queen's and at other universities.  Post using the hashtags #italladdsup + #queensu on Twitter or Facebook), like these students did:  

  1. Open Instagram and take a photo of yourself with you and a few of your “It All Adds Up” activities/characteristics behind you (on a whiteboard, chalkboard etc) using the hashtags #italladdsup and #queensu.  
  2. Include A FEW THINGS from this list such as:
    • Your program (e.g. 3rd year, Environmental Studies)
    • What you like best about your program (e.g. love learning about water quality)
    • Jobs you've held (e.g. Golf Course Attendant)
    • Volunteer roles (e.g. Queen’s First Aid)
    • Stuff you love doing (e.g. building snow forts)
    • Things most people don' t know about you (e.g. Love avocados; can ride a unicycle)
    • Clubs (e.g. Sailing Club, Rock Paper Scissors Club)
    • How other people describe your personality/strengths (e.g. smile a lot; creative)
    • Interests/hobbies (e.g. baking cupcakes; knitting; ultimate Frisbee)
    • Sports/Music/Arts/ (e.g. intramural volleyball; varsity fencing; CFRC DJ; watercolours)
    • What you want to be known for (e.g. changing the world; building greener houses)
    • Anything else that makes sense for you
  1. Download OPTIONAL signs, if you want to include one with your photo:

    - I'm wondering how it all adds up (PDF)

    - It's All Adding Up to ______________ e.g. It's All Adding Up to Me, feeling happy OR It's All Adding UP to working with plants...etc (PDF)

    - I'm hoping It All Adds Up to _____________ e.g. It's All Adding Up to medical school OR It's All Adding Up to a summer job in a community agency...etc (PDF)

  1. Feel free to get creative.  A whiteboard works but you could use a chalkboard, chalk on a sidewalk, crayons on paper…or whatever you come up with!
  1. Tag your friends!  
Wondering How It Adds Up for You?
Get inspired by other students!  Follow and post to #italladdsup on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter
 Use our tools and resources to help you Add It All Up and make decisions about what to keep, expand, lose 
Take these FREE Queen's workshops to help you Add It All Up:

Career Planning Workshop (Career Services) - Dates and sign up info.

You’ve Got Skills (Career Services) - Dates and signup info.

Balancing School Work and Life (Student Academic Success Services) - Dates and signup info.

Time Management:  Avoiding Procrastination & Maintaining Motivation (Student Academic Success Services & Expanding Horizons for Graduate Students) - Dates and signup info.


Profiles - Queen's Students and Alumni

So far, Allison is Adding It All Up to:  Engineering Education Grad School

Allison stands in front of her It All Adds Up boardAllison has always had a passion for helping students find information and make informed decisions.  When choosing which activities to become involved with on campus, Allison decided to participate in those that were useful to her when she used the services. Allison explains, “I remember being confused and intimidated when I needed to ask for help or advice, by volunteering with this experience, I hope to make it easier on students who are looking for information!” 

Allison has done just that. In her undergrad at Queen’s, Allison was a Student Ambassador and Integrated Learning Centre (ILC) tour guide for prospective students and parents wondering about engineering. After returning from her undergraduate internship with QUIP, Allison also began volunteering at the Ontario University Fair, sharing her experiences with Queen’s Applied Science program and answering questions from prospective Queen’s students. Her passion was so obvious to a relative of one student, that he offered her his business card for further networking! “I was not expecting my volunteer experiences to add up to networking opportunities – it was a happy surprise!” jokes Allison.

Now, a 2nd year Masters of Applied Science student in Mechanical Engineering and Engineering Education, Allison is a Career Services Peer, providing resume checks for QUIP applicants. She is also a Teaching Assistant within the Faculty of Applied Science. Initially applying to be a TA to help younger students with design projects and technical communication skills, this position, as well her volunteer activities helped drive the development of her Master’s research question: How do grade 12 students learn about engineering and how do their math, science and guidance counsellors help them in this discovery?

Outside of Engineering, Allison also enjoys intramural soccer, ultimate Frisbee and participating with the Most Autonomous Sailboat Design Team (MAST), as well as going to the Grad Club for trivia! Participating in these activities, as well as volunteering as a tour guide, has allowed Allison to gain critical skills in teamwork and managing large groups. In sharing her experiences with other students, Allison was able to communicate “how good of a ‘fit’” the program was for her and how she enjoyed the content of the degree, despite the stressful demands of the program.

Overall, Allison’s desire to help students make education decisions about their future and the volunteer activities she has undertaken to do this, have allowed her to add it up to a degree in Engineering Education.  

Hilary is Hoping It All Adds Up to:  Becoming a Film Editor

During her undergraduate degree, Hilary pursued a BAH with a major in film and a minor in English. However, the further she progressed in her studies and the more volunteer activities she undertook, the more she realized her current degree was not working for her.  “I decided to focus more on interests that aligned with my chosen career path, and let some of my other interests go,” explains Hilary. Hilary made the decision to drop her minor, in order to accommodate more film courses. She also gave up other interests, like acting in the Drama department’s productions to make more time for other film-related interests.

While these sacrifices were difficult to make, they were not without gain. With extra time to devote to film-related interests, Hilary started searching for opportunities on campus and in the Kingston community to develop editing-specific skills. Hilary volunteered as an assistant editor on a local film, participated in FOCUS film festival and the Kingston Canadian Film Festival, volunteered with QTV and secured a part-time position with their video production company.   Hilary is currently a freelance film editor and a barista, saving up for film school.

By taking advantage of film related opportunities, Hilary was able to gain valuable career-related skills. Her courses, in both Film and English, allowed her to master the art of storytelling, thinking logically and helped her develop a strong work ethic. It was through her volunteer and work opportunities that she gained technical skills related to film editing, as well as responding to client feedback and meeting deadline independently and as part of a team. Through skills gained, Hilary is adding it up to film school with the end goal of being a film editor.  

Holly is Hoping It All Adds Up to:   a Future in Global Health or Health Promotion 

Holly, standing in front of her It All Adds Up boardHolly is an undergraduate student in the 3rd year of a BAH in Global Development Studies and English.  She enjoys studying within the field of development as it allows her to connect with global issues and learn more about marginalized populations around the world. Her degree path and leadership roles on campus have also allowed her to pursue her love of helping others.

This year, Holly is co-chair of the Mental Health Awareness Committee (MHAC), after having shared her own personal story with mental illness in first year and having coordinated residence workshops on mental health in second year. She is also a manager for the Peer Support Centre (PSC). Both of these ventures have helped further develop her interest in mental health advocacy and education, which began in high school. Many people may not know, but Holly was awarded the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Medal for her initiative of hosting anti-bullying workshops within Northern Nova Scotia. Her love of educating others on the importance of living healthy lifestyles, as well as implementing policies and practices regarding mental health into the social system, allowed her to finish a two year term as a member of the Nova Scotia Youth Advisory Council.

Holly also knows the importance of spending time doing activities purely for fun. Much of her spare time is spent doing yoga through Queen’s Yoga Club, running, spending time with friends or trying new recipes.   By combining her desire to help others, along with her degree programs, Holly is hoping it adds up to a Master’s degree in Global Health or Health Promotion. 

Angela is Adding It All Up to:  Teaching at a University

Angela Du is a Bachelor of Education student in the Concurrent Education (Intermediate-Senior) program. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree in 2014, earning a major in English Literature and Language Arts and a minor in French Studies. While working on her first degree, Angela decided to pick a variety of activities that suited her interests.  Some of her highlighted activities include going on exchange during third year to France, where she was able to apply her knowledge and skills in French Studies and gained a better understanding of different education systems around the world. This year, she is a part of two student organizations: Worth and Authentically U, which deal with gender issues and eating disorders. Being a part of these two committees has not only allowed Angela to engage with social issues, but has helped to develop her teamwork skills, empathetic nature and other professional skills that will help to expand her teaching. As Angela suggests, “as a student, wouldn’t you want to know that your teacher was committed to student initiatives”?

After obtaining her B.Ed, Angela hopes to add up her degree and experience by continuing her education in a graduate studies program with the ultimate goal of teaching at the university level. Angela admits that her love of English literature, teaching and interaction with faculty members have helped her make this decision. “I have professors Shelley King and John Pierce to thank for an incredible introduction to research. I worked with them in their recovery project on little known female author Amelia Opie,” explains Angela. This experience has allowed her to refine her methodological research skills, while learning more about the experiences of those working in the English department and what kind of teacher she would like to become.  Looking forward to a possible career in teaching English, Angela says “[she] can’t wait to go on with my education and meet more like-minded, and importantly, unlike-minded people.”

Don't forget to also follow #italladdsup on social media!

Tools to Help You Decide How to Spend Your Time
Are you feeling...?  

Stressed or pressured to always do more?

Many students report feeling this way, at least some of the time. Asking yourself these questions may help you figure out the cause and inspire you to pursue some of the related resources:

  • Is quantity of activity the best predictor of future success?  Who says?
  • Do your activities energize you?
  • How many doors are you trying to leave open? Is it doable?
  • Are there activities you would prefer to be doing instead?  Or, would reducing the amount/quantity of time spent help?
  • What are some things you could do to help reduce the pressure to keep adding more activities?


Tension Diary (SASS):

Developing Mindfulness (SASS):

Your Best You:  Improving Your Mood workbook (Student Wellness Services)

Are you feeling...?  

Overwhelmed or lacking time?

You are not alone. Asking yourself these questions can help you fine-tune things and connect with helpful resources:

  • Assess what you are already doing.
  • Remember that some people thrive on variety while others get tired from 2-3 activities.  There is no one answer.
  • Do you prefer to have breadth or depth?


Weekly schedule template (SASS):

Weekly time use chart (SASS):

Time management tips (SASS):

Advising appointments with Learning Strategists (SASS) to help you get on track academically or improve your confidence or performance:

Are you feeling...?  

Indecisive about what to spend time on...and what NOT to spend time on?

It can help to remind yourself that you have made good decisions in the past. Asking yourself these questions may help you move forward, as can the related resources:

  • Do you have a good sense of where your time is going?
  • Do certain activities hold more "weight" for you?
  • Is there something in particular (information, opinion) that will help you feel more comfortable prioritizing a given activity?


Decision-making worksheet  (PDF, 309 kB)

Decision-making matrix (PDF, 123 kB)

Decision-making tree example (PDF, 189 kB)

Make an appointment to meet with a career counsellor.

Are you wondering...  

What's 'best" for your future?

This is a big question. It takes time to figure out about yourself and also about what's "out there". Here are some resources and tools to help you get started:

  • Are you exploring or wondering about options?
  • Do you have a particular career goal in mind?
  • Have you done research to find out what skills/experiences are most helpful to get you where you’d like to go?


Here's a diagram that shows a process for finding career direction.

Come to drop-in career advising to move forward with this question.

Are you feeling...?  

Curious about trying new things or wanting to change your commitments?

This can be exciting but sometimes daunting. Take a look at these questions and resources:

  • What activities are you (still) interested in?  What new activities look fun/exciting/useful?
  • Looking for something new or different?
  • Want to develop a specific skill?
  • Want to test something out to see if you like it?


AMS Jobs and Volunteering -

Student Clubs -


Are you...  

Interested in perspectives on how to spend your time and what to take on?

Sometimes it is helpful to hear what others think about an issue. Here are some links to consider:



Strategic Volunteering: Lessons from a Mature Student -

Strategic Volunteering and Why It Matters -

Gretchen Rubin (The Happiness Project):  7 tips for deciding how to spend your time -

Why I choose to manage my energy, rather than time -

The top 10 skills employers want in 20-somethings:

Want to join or post but don't use Instagram?  Use hashtags #italladdsup and #queensu on Twitter or Facebook.  Follow us on Twitter (@mycareerqueensu) or Facebook (Queen's University Career Services)

It All Adds Up is a campaign promoting career health, brought to you by Queen's Career Services and the Alma Mater Society (AMS).