Career Exploration: Action Items to Get Started!
Students, do you feel like your parents control everything? Are you looking for ways to test the waters in your future? The best way to start is to just start! You will probably need help. Ask your parents. A crazy thought. Believe it or not, they had a life before having you and they have experiences and resources that can help you.
If you are a parent or guardian you can help students in this exploration path.
- Let your student take the lead. Up until now, we have controlled every aspect of their life. Time to let them start to control aspects of their life.
- Let them TRY
- Let them FAIL
- Let them TRY AGAIN!
- Provide your student opportunities to try new things.
- Community Service – Helping others actually can expose your student to different life experiences and help them see beyond themselves. Volunteer at school, church, community, senior center, animal shelter, food pantries, political campaigns, library, national park, local rec center, museums, habitat for humanity, etc.
- Extracurricular activity – Sports, Music, Art, Technology, Student government, and academic teams and clubs.
- Part-Time Job/Internship or Job Shadow– encourage your teen to start working part-time during school breaks. Working a summer at a fast-food restaurant can be excellent motivation for continuing education and clarifying job/career goals. I have seen many students gain very valuable experience by just going to work with their parents or adult, job shadowing. Internships are another route to gain experience.
- Chores & Responsibilities – Students can learn and obtain skills by helping their family around the house, with younger siblings, managing personal and family responsibilities.
Like it or not, obtaining your career goals starts with YOU, your education, and your opportunities. In today’s day and age, understanding your path early can make a difference in future success and opportunity.
Learning about YOU helps you make important decisions like:
- How much education do I need? Certification, Associates, Bachelors, Masters, Doctorate.
- Do I need to start in High School? Some schools require certain classes before you are admitted.
- What Path should I take? Start at Community college, 4-year or Gap Year.
- What school is best for what I want to do? Over 3600+ Colleges and Universities to choose from. You will save time and money by researching before you go.
I ramble…and if you know me I can go on for days. What is the best way to start? Look above for ideas…by the way not just for students. Adults can benefit from a little self-evaluation from time to time. When? Start exploring NOW!