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Puzzles, Purpose, and Certificates

You matter to God, and so do the details of your education

God has given you talents and has a mission for you to fulfill while on this earth. He is interested in you and what you do. 1
John H. Groberg, “What is your Mission?” (Brigham Young University devotional, May 1979),
While it may be challenging, discovering your talents and purpose is worthy of your efforts. As a student, selecting a certificate helps you find another piece of that puzzle and teaches you new talents and skills you can use to bless not only yourself, but those around you.

While selecting a certificate during your second term of PathwayConnect, you will use My Career Path, found under “Academic Planning” in your BYU-Pathway Portal. This tool will help you explore several career options and discover which certificates and degrees will best help you get there.

man working on care engine
Learn new skills through a certificate.

If you haven’t decided which route to take in your education, My Career Path will introduce you to the different certificates you could start in PC 103 and what degrees and jobs they will lead to. Using this tool is a great way to visualize your future and understand how certificates help you reach your goals.

Certificates offered through BYU-Pathway are categorized as introductory or advanced. For your first certificate, only introductory certificates are available, which you will see in My Career Path. If an advanced certificate interests you, prepare now to take it by learning which certificates you’ll need to take first. You can find the program requirements in My Career Path or on BYU-Pathway’s certificate pages .

If you are still stumped about which certificate to choose after exploring My Career Path, try these two activities!

Try it on

man tying his dress shoes
Explore different certificates by “trying them on.”

If you want to learn more about your possible certificate choices, then explore certificates like you’re trying to find an outfit for an important event such as a date or interview. Finding an outfit to wear for those events sometimes requires imagination and trying on a lot of different options until you find the right combination.

In this activity, “try on” the certificate by imagining yourself already having and using the skills in your everyday life. Then, as you go through your day at work and home, find ways you could use those skills. After a few days of “trying it on,” reflect on what you learned and decide if it’s a good fit for you.

Woman with glasses thinking
Figure out your goal first.

Work backwards

When solving a problem, knowing your end goal and working backward to determine where to start can be easier than starting at the beginning and trying to find the end. The same can be true for finding a certificate.

  • Decide your goal or dream you want to accomplish. This could be anything from opening your own business to earning a promotion at work.
  • Identify the skills and steps you need to reach that goal. It may be helpful to interview someone who is already where you hope to be and ask for their advice through an informational interview .
  • Select a certificate with the skills you need to help you achieve your goal.