Looking for money to go to a post-secondary school is not easy. Sometimes where to start can be a very daunting task. As I speak with students, entrance scholarships are very straight forward - whether students qualify for them or not depends on their Grade 12 marks (sometimes even Grade 11 marks are included) but then there are those other scholarships - you know, the millions that are apparently out there but so hard to find. So recently I saw a Facebook post called Grant me Scholarships developed by a student looking for money to pay for her post secondary schooling, The website is called GrantMe. There are many different criteria for qualifying for scholarships, three most prominent ones are academics, leadership skills and volunteerism. Many other scholarships that could be pursued are ones that students or their families may be connected to (ie work, banks, involvement in sports or other extracurricular activities, just to name a few). Many times I have been told that there is a lot of scholarship money out there but no one to give it to. If you don't apply you won't know if you qualify. If you want to know more check out their blog
Graduation is a big deal. It is one of those moments when you walk across the stage to receive your diploma and say “I did it.” For some, academics come easy, for others it does not. It is hard work, I know. I was not very academic in high school but if I wanted to graduate I needed to have friends who didn’t judge me, but who were there to help me. And I found out that it takes hard work to graduate. We need those students who strive for the high marks! It took a long time to find out what was the best fit for me, but I am doing a job that I love that allows me to help students explore all the options available to them as their pursue goals after high school. We just don’t have universities, we have colleges and trades schools, and so much more- there is a place for everyone. So I want to say, “Congratulations to all students who received their high school diploma.”
The image is from https://standforthesilent.org
Over the years systems have been put into place to categorize, and define specific demographics, personalities, computer language etc: Area codes, postal codes, entry codes, access codes, security codes, Morse code, code of practice, source codes, Code of Conduct, Code of Practice, Code Blue, Code of Honour, barcodes, and genetic code,
Recently our Grade 1 students received a QR Code card so they could easily sign on to their chrome books rather than having to use a username/password code.
As Career Counsellor I abide to a specific set of rules called “The Code of Ethics.” Within the counselling realm personality tests like Myers Briggs, Holland’s Learning Theory, Kiersey’s Temperaments, all have codes that define different careers and career pathways.
Have you ever heard of NOC codes?
NOC codes (National Occupational Classification) were published in 1993. It is a compilation of occupations that exist in Canada that outlines the tasks, duties, skills and responsibilities, type of education needed, and employment requirements do the jobs within a occupational category.
Example: Career Counsellor
Career Counsellors fall under Occupations in Education, Law and Social, community and government services - a very broad category of jobs.
So if you would like to see if you have the skills and ability to pursue a particular job within an occupational group follow this link and type in a job you might be interested in learning more about:
National Occupational Classification
Recently I was looking for a book that might challenge me to think about how much more effective I could be as a career counsellor to high school students. This book was actually written for people in management positions but the principles laid out can be applied to the role in which I am in on a daily basis. There are four main characters in the book, Sniffy, Scurrie, Hem and Haw. How do we handle change or make decisions? As I reflected on these four characters I could see that students can fit characters like this as they make decisions about careers and life choices.
Sniffy and Scurrie knew what to do when there was change - they accepted it and knew that if they didn’t than they would lose out on the vast opportunities that were waiting for them.
Hem did not like change, was not prepared to explore the possibilities that were out there, spending to much time thinking and analyzing. Instead of looking forward, Hem was still basing decisions on past experiences and out-dated ideas, therefore making in harder for change to occur or even be current in ideas and thoughts.
And finally there is Haw the one who didn’t jump into change quickly but knew that in order to move forward change must take place. Don’t be afraid to fail, don’t be afraid to step out and try new things, if that doesn’t work try something new and different, get out of your comfort zone. Laugh at your failures.
Not all students can be identified as any one of these four characters but I definitely have counselled Sniffies, Scurries, Hems and Haws. That is my job, to help students recognize that they need to change their thinking in how they approach their career decisions, to not rely on out-dated information from years gone by, but to do thorough research and to keep an open mind of the many many different careers there are today and to look to the future as to what the careers may look like down the road. Times are changing, the world of work is changing and I need to help students see that it is not as dismal as people make it out to be.
Change is inevitable, change is necessay, embrace changes no matter the unsurmountable unknowns, whether you have searched out every career and know exactly what you want to do, how long it will take to do and the end goal being happy in what you do. Remember life will throw curve balls and then some reevaluating may need to take place. Universities change their program requirements, career trends seem to be changing on a regular basis and the security of riding on the coat tails of family businesses or even following in your parents footsteps and doing exactly what they did and your grandparents did etc those careers may not even exist anymore. Then what do you do - embrace change.