The CSUSB Career Center provides services to students inclusively and respectfully to ensure that all students needs are met. The frequently asked questions and resources for special populations were developed to meet the under-served needs of the following populations of students:
- Students with Disabilities
- Undocumented / DACA
- Justice Involved (Fomerly Incarcerated)
- Culturally Diverse
If you would like to request additional information or a special population be added to this page, or if you have any questions regarding the content presented, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you.
Special Populations - Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Should I disclose my disability to an employer or potential employer?
Disclosing a disability is YOUR personal decision! It is not necessary or required to disclose. However, it is helpful for you to disclose a disability when accommodations are needed and requested to perform the job well or sharing the information will help your employer better understand the context of a visible disability.
Q: When and how should I disclose my disability?
If you decide that it is helpful for you to disclose a disability, the timing of your disclosure is very important and depending on your disability and level of comfort, your answers to these questions may vary.
- For visible disabilities: These disabilities are best disclosed during the first meeting in which they physically see you (usually a first interview). A natural time to bring this up can be during a strengths or weaknesses question or address your disability and explain how it has helped create your uniquely valuable qualities and accomplishments.
- For invisible disabilities: These disabilities are best disclosed if accommodations are required. The best time to have this conversation is usually at the end of an in-person interview or after an offer is made.
Q: How do I present my disability by indicating the strengths of my candidacy?
Describe your skills, strengths and experiences, addressing how you can/will do the job and discuss how your disability may impact you in the workplace and provide your employer with some options or suggestions for workplace adjustment. Another way to present your disability is to show that you are aware of your barriers that you may encounter in an office and be prepared to discuss how you make others feel more comfortable around you. The most important aspect of disclosing your disability is presenting yourself as a problem-solver.
|AbilityJOBS.com||A career website to help find employment for people with disabilities.|
|CSUSB Services to Students with Disabilities||On-campus resource.|
|DisABLEDperson.com||A website that focuses on disability employment. You can post your resume, search for jobs, and find scholarships.|
Q: Should I disclose my status on a resume or during an interview?
While it is important to be truthful during the hiring process, you are ultimately the one to decide when and how to share your status with a future employer. However, if you do decide to disclose your status, you will want to think through who you are disclosing this information to and in what manner the information is shared (during the interview, when an employer is giving you a job offer, etc.).
Q: What is EAD (Employment Authorization Document)?
U.S. employers are required to check all employees if they are allowed to work in the United States. Having an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) is one way to prove that you are allowed to work in the United States for a specific time period. Visit U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services - Employment Authorization Document to learn more.
Q: How do I answer questions about employment verification on a job application?
Most job applications will ask, “Are you legally authorized to work in the United States?” If you have DACA, you are able to answer “yes” and continue through the hiring process without disclosing additional information about your background. Once you are hired, employers should not ask you about how you received your work permit.
|CSUSB Undocumented Student Success Center||On-campus resource.|
|ImmigrantsRising.org||Empowers undocumented young people to achieve educational and career goals through personal, institutional, and policy transformation.|
|CA Immigration Guide||Find jobs and training.|
|National Immigration Law Center||Information about employment as an Undocumented/DACA.|
Q: Do I add my record to my resume?
Don't reference your record in your resume. The purpose of a resume is to help you secure a job interview. For your resume to work, it must highlight your top qualifications for the position and demonstrate that you would be an excellent employee. Revealing information about your record is best handled in a face-to-face interview.
Q: How do I demonstrate my record as a strength vs. a weakness during an interview?
Write a well-thought-out and heart-felt explanation for your circumstances as well as any rehabilitative measures that you have taken or are taking to stay straight. Be prepared to share this with the employer as part of the interview. The goal here is to define a weakness as a strength. Identify the lessons learned through your jail or prison stay. Illustrate how you grew from the experience and how it ties into you doing a great job for their company.
|CSUSB Project Rebound||On-campus resource.|
|CA Fair Chance Act (AB 1008) "Ban the Box"||Learn about the CA Fair Chance Act and “Ban the Box” when job searching.|
Q: How should I evaluate potential employers regarding cultural diversity?
There are many ways to find out whether the company you are interested in has created an inclusive work environment. It is high recommended to look at diversity statements, diversity philosophy, policies, etc. See if the culture of an organization is as important as the product or services being offered.
Q: What should I know about and how should I handle workplace discrimination?
Workforce discrimination occurs in many different ways. There are federal laws that prohibit discrimination against individuals on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, religion, disability, pregnancy, and age. Employers are responsible for complying with the law, but you are responsible for making sure you know and protect your rights. Visit Findlaw Discrimination Overview for tips and information on how to deal with workplace discrimination.
|CSUSB Diversity & Inclusion||On-campus resources.|
|DiversityJobs.com||Search for all jobs with diversity-friendly employers.|
|Diversity.com||Job postings from some of the best diversity employers across a wide variety of industries.|
Q: Do I add my sexual orientation or gender identity on my resume?
Whether you choose to disclose your sexual orientation or gender identity on your resume depends on how comfortable you feel with the potential employer having this information. It is important to know that you do NOT have to disclose at any point in the process. If you decide that you want to disclose the information, here are three opportunities to do so:
- On your resume
- In an interview
- After you start working for the organization
Q: Should I discuss my sexual orientation or gender identity during my interview?
Regardless of whether you plan to “come out” in the interview stage, the primary focus of the interview should be to sell your skills. However, the interview is a great time to get some clarification about how supportive the company is to the LGBTQIA+ community. Here are some questions you can ask during the interview:
- “Would you say that your company has a diverse employee base?”
- “Do you offer same-sex benefits?”
- “Does your organization have an LGBTQ support or social group?”
Q: What type of professional attire should I select for an interview?
You should dress how you are comfortable, being sure that you will make a good first impression to your interviewer. Many select professional but gender-neutral clothing choices. Again, this is a highly individualized decision.
|CSUSB Queer & Transgender Resource Center||On-campus resource.|
|Lambda Legal||National LGBTQ Civil Rights Organizations. Includes Workplace Discrimination Cases and more.|
|Out for Work||A non-profit organization dedicated to help LGBTQIA+ Students transition to the workplace.|
|Out & Equal: LGBT Career Link||An LGBT job search board for anyone seeking for LGBT friendly employers.|
Q: How do I translate my military experience to a civilian resume?
Ex-military veteran resumes contain terminology and acronyms that some recruiters might not understand. It is usually challenging to explain what you did in terms relevant to someone who doesn’t understand how your qualifications translate. However, It is important to focus on the “Why” and not just the “What” when preparing content for your resume. Answer the “Why” question and you will know where and how to include your other experience on your resume as well.
- Instead of - “Provided technical and tactical guidance to help both commanding officers and subordinates in completing several missions in Iraq."
- Do - "Provided strategic advice to my team while completing challenging tasks, and assisted several superiors in cross-department goals."
Remember, think about the soft skills you learned in your military career, including teamwork, management, leadership, ability to prioritize, strong work ethic, etc.
Q: What questions will I be asked in an interview?
Most interviewers use a standard set of interview questions to see if your knowledge, training, and work experience fits the job and the company. Preparing your answers to these typical questions positions you to present your strongest qualifications.
- Keep your answers brief, but be certain you answer the questions thoroughly. Do not volunteer information that is not asked.
- In your responses, go beyond answering the question to share stories from your experience. Incorporate evidence, specific examples, data and anecdotes to illustrate your points.
- Try to use keywords from the job posting, and affirm the match of your skills to the company's needs.
|CSUSB Veterans Success Center||On-campus resource.|
|CSUSB Military/Veterans Corner||On-campus resource.|
|CA Department of Veterans Affairs||List of employers in CA who are interested in recruiting Veterans as well as job listings.|
|Transition Assistance Program (TAP)||Job search site and resources needed to transition from military life to civilian career.|
Q: Should I discuss my Visa status on my resume?
You should not include your visa status in your resume or CV. Similarly, you should not include your age, gender, race/ethnicity, religion, marital status, home country, or photograph. Your educational background and work history will display that you are an international student.
Q: Should I discuss my Visa status during an interview?
it is illegal for a potential employer to ask about your race, nationality, native language, or immigration status. However, they are allowed to ask, “Are you are authorized to work in the U.S or if you will now or in the future require sponsorship for an employment visa.” You can wait until employers bring up the subject but be sure to mention it by the end the interview.
Q: Can an employer require me to verify my employment eligibility?
An employer cannot require you to verify your employment eligibility or produce specific documents, such as Permanent Resident (“green”) cards or Employment Authorization Documents. It is your choice as to which of the permitted documents to provide for employment eligibility verification. Employment eligibility verification should be conducted only after an offer to hire has been made.
|CSUSB Center for International Studies & Programs||On-campus resource.|
|MyVisaJobs.com||Website for Internationals to find employment opportunities in the United States.|
|GoinGlobal.com||Identify employers who hire international talent based on occupation, job title, company name, and industry (Subscription needed).|