Updated: Jun 7
As I sit here over the winter break from school, I’ve had time to think. I look at my two young boys and I’m grateful for the advances made in Careers education in recent years. When I attended school, we had one designated careers lesson per week. We used this time to research university courses using the careers library (showing my age now – they were all hard copies) and had one meeting per year to discuss what we found with the careers teacher. It was a university application assistance lesson rather than a careers education lesson. Careers education is significantly more than one lesson a week. It is everything we do in school – it’s the career conversations we have in Mathematics, in Geography or even in the corridors at lunchtime; it’s real-life role-models that young people can identify with and much more.
Careers education is essential in assisting students to acquire the skills required to consider potential career paths. These programs in the education or training setting aid students to make better-informed decisions about their work choices by instilling knowledge, skills, and attitudes in particular fields. Research has shown that most young people are confused about which career paths to undertake due to a lack of relevant information and often follow paths recommended to them by parents or peers but this does not always make for the best future career. Career advisors and educators can issue helpful guidance that bridges the gap between education and career. The following blog post aims to highlight the role of a career advisor as more than just helping students through university admission but also assisting students in finding the appropriate career.
Did You Know about the 8 Gatsby's Benchmarks?
The Gatsby Benchmarks offer hands-on advice to enable the provision of practical career guidance and provision. The framework includes a stable careers program extensively looking into the needs of each pupil, passing across career and labor market information, setting up encounters with employers and employees, connecting curriculum learning to careers, allowing students to experience workplaces, setting up meetings with further and higher education and also offering personal vocational guidance (Allen and Chant, 2021).
Students, including myself at one time, have often asked questions such as what is the point? I believe that by addressing this crucial question, most young people will find the incentive to view careers education from a more positive perspective.
What career awareness opportunities will one gain from careers education:
I. Ability to find, analyze, and decipher career information.
II. Development of an understanding of one's abilities, skills, and preferences,
III. Gaining skills on how to relate and collaborate in groups
IV. Recognizing the significance of planning.
V. Ability to seek and establish expertise in a variety of fields
VI. Careers education helps one find a happy medium between work and play
VII. Develop employability skills such as teamwork and conflict resolution
VIII. Understand employers' and employees' roles and obligations while learning to value individual differences in the workplace.
Opportunity awareness is the ability to acquire information on various options that exist. Young people lack the necessary information on the upcoming career opportunities and ways to get them. Additionally, most young people are unaware of their abilities, preferences, and potential. Young people cruise through school without fully understanding their place in society. An involvement in careers education would curb such problems.
Have you ever wondered why many people despise their jobs? One of the key reasons is that most people did not get enough career information. No one was present to demonstrate the numerous career opportunities available; hence, they settled for whatever they got. Careers education allows us to explore these opportunities whilst working on many important workplace skills such as:
I. Decision-making skills.
II. Personal skills.
III. Soft skills
Decision-making skills consist of planning one's career and taking up a course related to the profession in mind. Personal skills involve contrasting an individual's preferences to the chosen career path (Savickas, 2019). Soft skills involve workplace responsibility, dependability, punctuality, integrity, effort, and time management. Additionally, career information can guide ways to classify occupations and understand the economic trends and dynamics in the job market.
If a random person were to ask about your future career goals, would you have a conclusive answer? Careers education can help you to identify your career goals. It enables one to recognize and focus on an educational plan to suit a particular career (What is Career Education? A Complete Overview, 2021). The student also gets motivated to pursue the selected course work to achieve the desired goal in the related field. A more specific understanding of a career allows students to use their academic intentions since they know what they aim to achieve.
Necessary Knowledge to Achieve Career Objectives.
We all agree that the transition between education achievement and job success is often a rough patch for many young people. With career education, we can assist the student's when making this critical transition. Career education offers guidance on how to self-actualize. Additionally, students get to learn the impact of careers on lifestyles. Ways on how one can gain satisfaction and purpose from work are demonstrated. Students become more motivated at school, make intentional choices and are more aware of the labour market. The great value of introducing career education as an ongoing process and not just a one-day affair is evident. Career education should be taught from a young age to enable students to grasp the ultimate value of education from the get-go. I hope by the time my young boys are in school that careers education will be a vital part in shaping their future. I’m looking forward to seeing how it evolves over the next few years.
Allen, M. and Chant, A., 2021. Exploring key facilitating factors to achieving the eight Gatsby Benchmarks in secondary schools in Kent. Journal of the National Institute for Career Education and Counselling, 47(1), pp.21-30.
Positive action., 2021. What is Career Education? A Complete Overview. [online] https://www.positiveaction.net/career-education
Savickas, M., 2019. Career counselling (pp. xvi-194). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.