How does the mindset of students change when then experience unpredictable crises? This study examined the characteristics of first-year university students' career awareness through quantitative text analysis of their free-writing reports. Correspondence analysis was conducted on the free-writing reports in Japanese (total 1,332,138 letters) of 2,652 first-year university students who studied career development during 2011-2019 at the Prefectural University of Kumamoto, Japan. The results showed that students who faced unpredictable circumstances due to the Kumamoto Earthquakes in 2016 had a higher tendency to think about their career development. They more frequently focused on striving for success through their own efforts than students in other years. Moreover, most of these students had engaged in activities both inside and outside their school campuses when they were in high school. These results suggest that unpredictable crises, such as the Kumamoto Earthquakes, can drive students who engage in activities both inside and outside their campuses to work independently, as well as provide them the opportunity to focus on their own abilities.