Retired Special Agent Kevin Crane offered tips on how college students can start preparing for their career in a speech he gave on Thursday at the Information Sciences and Technology building.
Speaking to an introduction to security and risk analysis class, Crane gave a PowerPoint presentation based on what college students should be doing to achieve their long-term goals.
Crane, a Penn State alumnus, was a special agent who conducted thousands of security clearance investigations for the United States government for 21 years. Now retired, Crane wrote a best-selling book, “Access Granted,” to help people gain security clearance and enhance their careers, Crane said.
Crane said he hopes to teach Penn State students how “to use their great education that they’re getting here to find the type of job and career that’s going to make them happy in their life. If that requires a background investigation, I want to make sure that every single Penn State student achieves that goal by being able to pass the background investigation.”
Crane addressed the issue of planning ahead beyond graduation to a classroom filled with about 50 people, a majority of them freshmen.
“I want to lay the foundation for your potential career,” Crane said.
Crane gave several tips on how to succeed in college. He told students to make sure to study, strive for good grades and be careful because what they do now could haunt them later on in life.
“There is no privacy online,” Gerald Santoro, professor of the class, said to his students.
Crane said the first thing to do is create a plan.
“Those who fail to plan are planning to fail,” Crane said. “I want to help you get your goals because we are Penn State.”
Students must start planning for their career instead of just aiming for a degree, Crane said.
Crane then gave information to students on what they should do to be successful both inside and outside of the classroom.
Crane told students to look for jobs they want to do, research what jobs require and start planning ahead. Find a committed mentor, start networking, evaluate all possible options, learn a second language that will make them more valuable to future employers and get involved with support groups where they can meet people with the same interests and help each other succeed.
“[Crane’s] advice on how to plan for your future is completely intact if students follow it,” Phyllis Crane, his wife, said.
Crane is currently working on his second book, which gives more detailed information on “how to plan on getting their careers from day one as a freshman and not waiting till the last minute when they graduate,” he said.