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Open P-TECH is changing its name to IBM SkillsBuild for Students and Educators on July 7th.
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Join Career Conversations and start planning for the career you want

It’s totally normal to have questions about your future: Where should I go to school? What do I want to do with my life? What am I even interested in? But you don’t have to figure it all out on your own. The right advisor can help you find the path that makes sense for you.


Who are the advisors and how can they help me?

Glad you asked. All the Career Conversations advisors are IBM employees, eager to use their experience in the working world to help you figure out your next steps. They’re here to provide support, guidance, and encouragement—to help you get where you want to go.

They might help you with things like:

  • Giving feedback on your resume or important applications,
  • Meeting people who are doing the jobs you’re interested in,
  • Exploring job options based on your interests,
  • Setting goals that take your life into account

And much more!

But don't stress: it doesn't mean a big commitment.

We call the program “Career Conversations” because that’s what it is. It’s just a series of conversations between you and your advisor. It’s completely free, it’s online-only, and it’s totally flexible. You control when you meet, for how long, what you talk about; you’re in the driver’s seat.

If you’re at least 18 years old, in the United States, and looking for help figuring out how to get the job you want, check out Career Conversations. What’ve you got to lose?


  • Sometimes, it just really helps to hear from someone who's "been there". Career Conversations advisors are in the working world. They've had to figure out what they want to do and what to study, they've had to network with other professionals, go through interviews, and get hired. And they're ready to share all of that experience with you. All you have to do is ask. Your advisor might help you see more of what's possible. (Maybe the perfect job for you is something you've never even considered.) They can give you super helpful job-related knowledge. They can help you make useful connections and strengthen your resume. Plus, your advisor provides intangible stuff, too. Things like encouragement and inspiration and confidence. Connecting with an experienced and caring professional can be a big advantage in a competitive world.
  • This program is really focused on helping you figure out your career pathways. Our advisors can help you answer questions about:
    • Workplace opportunities and expectations,
    • The highs and lows of certain jobs,
    • The educational and skill requirements to get into a field, and
    • Many more issues related to exploring and building career pathways.
    If you're looking for support outside of career planning, this program may not be quite right for you. Not sure? Ask us.
  • For this program, we require everyone to use Chronus tools to communicate. Chronus offers a full suite of meeting and messaging tools, including video. It may seem a little strict, but Chronus helps us keep everyone safe. It allows admins to monitor interactions when needed, and to pull transcripts in the event of any undesirable interactions or risky situations between participants. Email, Zoom, MS Teams, Google Hangouts, phone calls, and other platforms external to Chronus are not approved for communication. But don't worry: you don't have to jump through any hoops to get Chronus. As soon as you register for Career Conversations, you're dropped into the Chronus platform and you can access all of its tools. You can also download the Chronus app and easily use it from your phone.
  • Career Conversations is funded through IBM's Corporate Social Responsibility team—the part of the company dedicated to the welfare of others. We offer the program free of charge because our goal is to provide accessible education to anyone who wants it. In return, IBM and its partners are helping build their future workforce to meet the significant global demand for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics (STEAM) careers.   
  • You’re in control here. Once you’re in Chronus (our virtual meeting software), the platform will suggest advisors to you based on your interests and goals, as well as those of your potential advisors. In the end, you decide who you’d like to connect with.
  • The time commitment for Career Conversations is super flexible! It's up to you and your advisor to set expectations for the relationship and to set up meetings that work for both of your schedules. Remember, you're in the driver's seat.  
  • Reaching out to an experienced professional for advice can be intimidating, for sure. But we've got you covered. There are plenty of conversation topics and questions in Chronus that will give you something to talk about in early conversations and help you avoid awkward silences. And you have the freedom to choose the communication style that works best for you—and to switch it up if you want to. Maybe you prefer free-flowing conversation over video, or more structured Q&A over email. Whatever your style, we provide all the communication tools you'll need for a useful exchange.