What is Career Coaching?

Career coaching is a tool you can use to help figure out what you want to do with your major after graduation.  You’ll identify some good career goals, then we’ll break it down into actionable steps. You’ll have support – someone to bounce questions off of, help finding resources, and someone to keep you accountable. 

To set up an appointment for career coaching, call us at (906) 227-2800, chat with us (green circle in the lower right corner of our website), or set it up in Handshake (click on 'Career Center,' then 'Appointments' and follow the steps). 


Benefits of the Program

  • Gives you a boost in connecting class and work
  • Create an 'action plan' - you'll know what steps you need to take to figure out what you want to do with your major (or get extra help figuring out what majors might lead to the jobs you're interested in!)
  • Extra support when you're trying to answer those tough questions
  • Accountability - Often times the only thing holding someone back is having an accountability partner – someone to keep you on track and encourage you to meet your goals

What to Work On

Short-term goals, like what you want to accomplish in the next few weeks or so. This might be something like polishing a resume, preparing for an interview, or learning how to negotiate a starting salary.

Long-term goals, like exploring what jobs connect your strengths and skills learned from your major or learning how to build a network.

Some other goals ideas could include: 

  • Land an internship 
  • Update resume and cover letter
  • Prepare for an interview
  • Develop a new skill set
  • Lay out a new job search strategy
  • Create a long-term career plan

Open to Everyone

It doesn't matter where you are in school! Since you lead the process and set your goal, you can choose whatever feels right and appropriate for you. We have had students (and alumni!) of all ages participate in this program.

It doesn't matter what your major is! You don't have to be in a pre-professional program to get the most out of this - in fact, those of you in fine arts and liberal arts may find it MOST helpful to think about careers now! 


Katie Korpi


kpuroll@nmu.edu 906-227-2800
Grant updated

Grant Langdon

Assistant Director

glangdon@nmu.edu 906-227-2824

Walker Derby

Assistant Director

rderby@nmu.edu 906-227-2875

Learn more about the Career Coaches

I have a Bachelor of Science degree in Social Work, with minors in Human Behavior and Political Science, and a Master's degree in Higher Education in Student Affairs, both from Northern Michigan University. After receiving my undergraduate degree, I started work at a non-profit, child welfare agency in southeast Michigan in administrative roles, including Human Resources. I returned to NMU to work in Housing and Residence Life in 2008, working as a Resident Director in West and Spooner Hall, and then as Apartment Coordinator. I moved into an academic advising role in the Academic and Career Advisement Center, but stayed only briefly, as a position in Career Services became available - which is an area of considerable interest for me! I am drawn to opportunities to work with and support people, especially students!

I am responsible for providing leadership to the department in all areas and functions, to include student and alumni supports and programming in the areas of career and professional development, faculty and staff collaborations, employer relations and engagement, and overall operations. I am trained in Clifton Strengths, which is a tool based in positive psychology, designed to help individuals see their greatest strengths, and how to apply this knowledge powerfully and productively in the context of their personal and professional lives.

I am a huge fan of personal development and coaching, drawn to opportunities to help lift others up.  I'm in my happy place when I am camping or on my paddleboard.  A favorite quote of mine is: "And suddenly you know: it's time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings." 

After graduating from NMU with a Bachelor’s in Outdoor Recreation Leadership and Management in 2010, I lived and worked on-campus in the residence halls. During my time working for Housing and Residence Life, I lived and worked in Van Antwerp, Magers, Hunt, Spooner, West, Cedar, and Maple halls over the 10 years as a resident director and 4 years as a student employee. 

My student job and the opportunities provided while living on-campus changed my life forever in the best way! One of my most memorable experiences from work is opening Maple Hall for its first year along with the brand new desk operation. Then helping Maple Hall win Homecoming, developing a building culture and identity of activity, involvement, and care.  Learn more about the costly mistakes I made as a student at NMU here, https://nmu.edu/blog/3-ways-career-services-gives-you-extreme-advantage. Avoiding the mistakes I made could save you tens of thousands of dollars and years of your life.

Contact me for advice and coaching in identifying and acquiring a meaningful and fulfilling life. I love getting to know people, their strengths, and interests, then developing an adaptable plan to test if that plan is viable. This gives some huge advantages in getting the right job for you right after graduation. I’ll help you every step of the way from ideation, testing, resume writing, and interview practice so you can graduate with confidence. If things change after graduation, no problem. I happily work with alumni to pivot their career to something better aligned with their strengths and values, leading to a more fulfilling life. I run the Alumni Mentor Program, Professional Headshots, and most of the video production done for Career Services.

I am a problem solver that specializes in learning all sorts of things, collecting useful information from quality sources, and finding connections between seemingly unrelated things to generate new ideas and strategies for solving problems. I used to have a few areas of interest like technology, recreation, leadership, and photography but I’ve expanded and deepened my knowledge to best help all students and alumni identify the next steps to acquiring a meaningful and fulfilling life using a supportive coaching methodology.  

I love learning about students especially when video games, board games, the future of technology, camping, photography, scientific research, economics, education, and CliftonStrengths come up (I guess you can call me curious😅). My primary hobby is playing games with friends. Specifically, I enjoy solving problems and increasing efficiency and effectiveness as a group while exploring new worlds and systems. This just happens to be done most easily through video and board games. National Parks are also a big part of my life. I travel with my wife in our van/RV, lovingly named Appa (from Avatar the Last Air Bender), around the country to appreciate the natural beauty of the world. 

Hit me up with an email or stop by the Career Services office to talk about how we can get you every advantage in discovering and acquiring the fulfilling life you want… or just want to talk about whatever is going on in your life or a cool game, movie, book, hike, or something interesting you learned.

Favorite Book: The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

Favorite Movie: Star Wars: A New Hope

Top 3 Video Games Played the Most: 1) Ark: Survival Evolved (PC), 2) Space Engineers (PC), 3) The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (PC)

Favorite National Parks (so far): Zion and Yosemite 


I received my Bachelor’s Degree in Finance from Michigan Tech and my MBA here at NMU. Prior to working in Career Services, I was a Technical and Professional Recruiter for UP Health System – Marquette, so I have a unique perspective having seen all sides of the hiring process.

I have a passion for the outdoors and love skiing, mountain biking, running, and camping. I enjoy talking about people’s experiences and hobbies and helping find ways to partner those experiences with an individual’s strengths. I spend a lot of my free time on the lake, playing board games, camping, and going to music festivals. I dabble in guitar and piano and have recently started a bonsai club here in Marquette. I also love baking bread and my favorite movie is Bladerunner.

I interact with employers to help connect them with pertinent student groups and resources. We develop plans to market jobs, careers, internships, and more to students and alumni so that we’re taking a proactive approach to making opportunities available and accessible to our campus community and alumni. I like working semester-to-semester with employers and organizations to make sure we’re keeping a top-of-mind stance when it comes to opportunities.

I work with students and alumni to help provide guidance and resources in their career successes. The term ‘success’ to me is very student driven so we can be flexible and organic as we pursue goals and results knowing that those goals can change with time and experience. I have a very holistic viewpoint when it comes to both career and life paths and enjoy the self-discovery portion of the college experience.