This is a collective answer from our group of colleagues who have been working in the industry from 0 years (new grads) to more than a decade.
1. Try different things to figure out what fits, gain real-world experiences to determine whether you like something or not
Getting involved in coursework/ activities/ internships is the great way to figure out your strengths and interests.
At school, try taking courses to explore different fields. Some of our colleagues discover their career interests during college when they found themselves enjoying the course that they’d never taken before. Join activities/ projects to gain more relevant experiences.
Try doing internships in different domains to find what you like doing.
If needed, switch major when you’ve discovered your true interest, which some of us did during college.
2. Have the growth mindset
Don’t be scared to fail or do something that ends up not relevant to your future career.
Everything we learn is useful in some way or other in future. Try to build up skills, both soft skills and technical skills during any of your opportunities.
3. Learn from the more experienced
Talk to other people in your fields to get more career directions.
Find yourself senior mentors who can help you address issues and give career advice.
Read about different opportunities. There are plenty of blogs, articles where people share stories about their career paths and current landscapes in different fields.
4. Be pragmatic
Find a realistic point of view that align with interests. For example, does the career path help you become economically independent if that’s what you expect from a job?
5. Be flexible
Be flexible with where the world is going. One of us was passionate about a specific field and pursued the field in both college and graduate school. However, relevant opportunities were hardly available and they switched to a different trajectory, which they have been on for more than a decade.
I was able to find my job through my college career center. My university had a job listing website that students and alumni could use to apply for jobs. I would suggest to talk to your counsellor or advisor for more information as well.
1. Coordinate informational interviews - No matter what career you're trying to pursue, there are always people in the industry that will be willing to share their experiences and tips on how to excel. Word of mouth, internet research, or using LinkedIn are all good ways to find these people. Reach out to as many as you can and schedule quick 15-30 minute informational interviews where you can ask questions about their career progression, what they do at their job, and advice they might have for you. This will help you figure out what interests and doesn't interest you.
2. Learn about your chosen industry - Although the best way to learn something is by doing it, I think it's helpful to be prepared by researching the industries you're interested in. Do certain roles require additional schooling? Testing requirements? A certain skillset? Knowing what you're walking into before hunting for certain jobs and interviewing will help make the process more efficient.
3. Be open minded - Many people enter school or the workforce with an idea of what they want to do, and then realize they would rather be doing something else. Don't get discouraged if the first thing you try doesn't work out, there are endless opportunities out there. Be open to constructive feedback and never be afraid to ask questions.
I hope this helps and wish you the best of luck!