Focus 2 provides career resources for students


The new Focus 2 web-based program allows students to expand their career options.

If students are looking for more career options, career education can provide help for those trying to expand their interests.

Doug Nichols, head of Career Education at Shippensburg University, encourages first-year students to get involved in career planning by using the remodeled web-based program, Focus 2. This program can give more career options for students to consider that are related to their assessment results.

Career Education (CE) is a program that works with first-year students into their sophomore year. It provides information and assistance with career resources.

The web-based program was remodeled three years ago, now renamed Focus 2 (formerly called Focus.) It has easy navigation and surveys that can be accessed anytime.

Nichols works mainly with first-year undeclared students. He presents a 30 minute information session of Focus 2 and breaks down the process. He uses his self-assessments as an example to give students a feel of what they will actually be doing. His main objective is to promote career education through the program. In just this semester he has presented to at least 14 classes totaling about 600 students. After he gives the presentation, professors administer an optional feedback form on Desire to Learn for each class.

“With the classes I’ve worked with, 97 percent of the students have been positive they said that Focus has benefited them and that the work I’ve done with them has helped them with their education,” Nichols said.

“We go on and ask what they got out of Focus. Two big things was that the careers that fit their personalities and interest. Almost 400 people said that and that a lot of folks said it helped them learn more about themselves.”

According to Diane McCrudden, vice president of Career Dimensions, the university has been using Focus 2 for more than 20 years. Focus 2 contains the most comprehensive occupational and educational information database available.

Focus 2 has been fully certified in meeting the highest level of standards established by the Association for Computer-Based Systems for Career Information (ACSCI).

The Focus 2 system meets the standards and criteria established by the National Career Development Association and the U.S. Department of Labor.

Research and survey results show that Focus is the system “most recommended by career counselors, is simple and easy to use, has more of a ‘focus’ on the user, is faster to use, most affordable, comprehensive, and has great support from the Career Dimensions staff,…one of the most used systems.”

It only takes a few easy steps to register. To register, go to, click on the Focus link (lower right corner), create a new account. You will then have access to all self-assessments for a complete profile.

You can work at your pace and use the other Focus sections as needed. You can re-use your file throughout your SU career.

The Career Education Department is located in the Luhrs side entrance to the CUB. Its office is in Rooms 112, 122B and 111.

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