Career Readiness Program: Compass

The COMPASS program is a collaborative career-readiness program that was developed by the College of Arts and Sciences and will be managed by the Career Development Center

The COMPASS Program is designed to support students as they navigate the transition to their post-graduate life. Through the program, students will learn to recognize the connections between their interests and academic choices. They will also explore how academic experiences can be translated into career opportunities, valuable skills and professional networks. In short, COMPASS will enhance the student’s understanding of a USD degree by emphasizing the value of their liberal arts education and its application to their future goals.


In addition to satisfying the university requirements for the bachelor's degree, each student with a major in the College of Arts and Sciences, declaring a major under the 2018-2019 catalog or later,  must complete the COMPASS Career Readiness Program.

The COMPASS Career Readiness Program requires 10 points (4 core points + 6 flexible points). 

Four Core Points, which must be satisfied by:

  1. Participating in an orientation after declaring the major (1 pt)
  2. Attending a networking event (1 pt)
  3. Attending an Articulating the Value of your Liberal Arts session (1 pt)
  4. Completing the Senior Survey during the final semester at USD (1 pt)

Six Flexible Points, which can be satisfied by attending COMPASS Program career related events and/or participating in experiential education, for example, internships, research.

Student Participation

  • A student declares a major in the College of Arts and Sciences. After declaration, the student receives an email from the Career Development Center welcoming them to the College and letting them know that they can complete an orientation that explains the COMPASS program. Transfer students may attend a COMPASS orientation as part of the Transfer Orientation process.
  • A student can earn up to three of the flexible points prior to declaring a major.
  • Students can track their progress toward completion of the COMPASS Program through the MySanDiego portal.
  • May and August graduates must complete the program at least 30 days before the final day of spring semester classes. December graduates must complete the program at least 30 days before the final day of fall semester classes.
  • Students who double major only complete one USD career readiness program based on their primary major, a student can select their primary major when declaring. Students who switch majors to a new academic unit may take their points with them.
  • To start mapping out your COMPASS experience use this worksheet

Experiential Education 

A student can earn up to 3 of their 6 flexible points through experiential education. A student completing experiential education for an approved course will automatically have their points transferred to their COMPASS portal at the end of the semester.

If a student is not earning credit, or fulfilling a different course, a student must fill out the registration form as well as reflection form at the end of their experience.  

Event Request and Approval 

Student organizations, faculty, staff and community member seeking COMPASS approval for an event must submit an Event Approval Request Form at least one week in advance to the event or activity. All COMPASS events must be approved by the Career Development Center. Student organizations need to first attend a COMPASS Training to register events.

If you attend an event off campus, such as a conference or speaker, you can fill out the off-campus event form to request points.

Students are responsible for obtaining and providing appropriate attendance verification for events. This may include signing in at the beginning or end of a USD event, completing a survey or reflection form or, in the case of non-USD events, discussing the event with Career Development Center staff prior to attending the event.

Statement on Academic Integrity

All members of the University community share the responsibility for maintaining an environment of academic integrity; academic dishonesty is a threat to the University. Acts of academic dishonesty include: a) unauthorized assistance on an examination; b) falsification or invention of data; c) unauthorized collaboration on an academic exercise; d) plagiarism; e) misappropriation of resource materials; f) any unauthorized access of an instructor's files or computer account; or g) any other serious violation of academic integrity as established by the instructor. This includes but not limited to: a) signing in/out at an event to receive credit but not staying, b) signing other students in at an event, and c) witnessing others falsifying attendance information.

Contact Information

For questions or concerns please call (619) 260-4654 or email