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Reflect & Define


What it is: This phase is about reflecting on your reactions to different experiences in your life (classes, jobs/internships, volunteer activities, hobbies, or informational interviews). Simply, this phase is about uncovering what you like/find interesting and dislike/do not find interesting and understanding why.


Different Ways to Reflect

On your own

  • Journal or list

    • Likes and dislikes of your job, internship, classes, clubs, hobbies, group projects, informational interviews, or other ways you tested careers.

    • Have a page in a notebook during your internship (or a list on your phone) to write down likes/dislikes as they happen. Reflect on the work, your tasks, the people, the culture, the industry, even the environment.

    • Ask yourself WHY you liked or disliked the item. The why is important.

    • Pay attention to your strong likes and dislikes.  

  • “Stories of flow”

    • Reflect on times when you were in flow (i.e. your best self, like time just flew by, or were in the zone). Think about what skills you were using, the setting, the impact you were having.


With your Eastside Career Coach

  • After each school term and internship, your Eastside Career Coach will ask you what you liked/disliked.

  • They can help you draw insights and adjust your Ideal Job Description based on the learnings.


Online assessments

  • O*Net- Answer a series of questions and the tool will match you with careers based on your interests. O*Net contains an extensive list of careers in all industries and sectors.

  • Pymetrics- Play a series of games and the tool uses neuroscience information to match your with careers. This is best for careers in business and technology.

  • Buzzfeed- Wouldn’t it be great to take a Buzzfeed quiz and have it tell us what career would be perfect for us? If they can tell us what Game of Thrones character we’d be or what pet we should get next, they surely can tell us what career we should pursue! Just for fun, feel free to take this Buzzfeed Quiz … because the best way to choose a career should be based on how you’ll spend your first paycheck. (And then go take one of the assessments above.)



What it is: This phase is about boiling down the most important interests from your reflections and putting them into categories that we call the Ideal Job Description.


If you graduated from Eastside after 2014, you met with your Eastside Career Coach after high school graduation, and she boiled down all of your reflections into an Ideal Job Description. It should be constantly adjusted based on reflections.


If you graduated from Eastside in 2014 or earlier and do not have an Ideal Job Description, reach out to Eun-Mee Jeong to set up a meeting.

Ideal Job Description

The Ideal Job Description is broken down into three main categories to help you understand and visualize what is most important to you in a job or career. Note that not every job will encompass everything you want, so it’s important to prioritize what is most important and where you are willing to be flexible.



  • What you like to do or the tasks you like to perform

  • Examples: Analyze data, communicate, and collaborate



  • Topics that you are interested in (e.g. what you like to read or talk about)

  • Examples: Social justice, healthcare, automotive, and sports



  • Principles that are most important to you

  • How the company conducts business

  • Examples: Autonomy, respect for all, sense of community, and fast-paced


Other details to consider

  • Location

    • Ideal cities to live and the radius you’d be open to commute to

    • Examples: East Palo Alto and willing to commute up to San Francisco and down to San Jose or Oakland is homebase and willing to commute anywhere as long as it’s less than 45 minutes to get to by public transportation.

  • Salary

    • Ideal and minimum salaries or wages that accurately reflect the job market and your skills and qualifications

    • Examples: $50,000 - $55,000 or $18-$20/hour

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