On the first Wednesday of November all grade 9 students across Canada have this great opportunity to experience “the world of work,” with their parents, a relative/family friend or be hosted in the community.
In years past, most Grade 9 students went to the workplace with a parent. Today, students are choosing to go with someone who is in a career that is of interest to them if given the opportunity. Why the shift? It seems that when asked the question, students do not want to pursue their parents’ careers. They want to explore other options, because today the choices are endless, and the educational system is realizing that more needs to be done to provide students with the knowledge to make wise decisions that will impact their lives.
There are two outcomes that arise from an event like this:
Some students will go away from this day and say yes, this is what I want to do for rest of my life.
Some students will go away from this day and say this is truly not for me so now what?
Both of these outcomes can be addressed within the educational system and by utilizing the expertise of high school career counsellors who can help guide students to post-secondary schools that fit their personalities and learning styles.
A website like “One Stop High School Career Counsellor” brings all types of post-secondary schools to one site, universities, colleges, bible colleges and trades schools. A link to different assessment and personality tests helps students understand themselves better.
Also, by offering courses at the high school level that specifically deal with careers, allows students to explore and hopefully be able to find a career that they are passionate about. Sometimes they need to go outside the educational system and either volunteer or work in an area they are interested in. This would then solidify in their own minds whether this is a good fit for them.
As students continue to seek and explore their options, high school career counsellors need to ensure that students have the right courses in their timetables throughout their high school years so they can enroll in their program of choice at the post-secondary level. High school career counsellors need to keep up-to-date with the continually changes for admissions, and to be current as to all the options available to students.
It is important to remember, there is more than one pathway for students to achieve their goals, their dreams and the ability to make a difference in “the world of work.”