Career Planning & Post-High School Options

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1 Career Planning & Post-High School Options What type of student are you and/or what type of student do you want to be while in college? What are your goals, interests, attitudes, and abilities? What are you strengths as well as your weaknesses? What makes you unique? What type of learner are you? The process of choosing a college begins with a careful look at yourself, not with a list of colleges. Each student s needs and goals are very different. Take time for reflection about who you are and who you want to be. Although most high school students are uncertain about which career to pursue, it is wise planning to take the time and the effort to learn about careers that are appropriate and interesting to you. Your career is the work you will do in your lifetime! It will affect how much money you will have, your leisure time, where you will live, and what you will be doing. The college and career search can be confusing and overwhelming. It is important that you do what you can to identify what your interests are and who you want to be! 1

2 Career Planning & Post-High School Options Choosing a career is a major decision in one s life. During Freshman Guidance you were introduced to the first step in your career exploration. You might also inquire about taking an aptitude test or interest inventory to find your strengths, weaknesses and interests, therefore discovering potential career choices that are right for you. You can talk to your counselor or visit the College & Career Center for self-assessments. What Should I Be Doing Right Now? 1. Learn about yourself! * Interests: What appeals to you? What do you enjoy? * Values: What is important to you? * Aptitude: What are you good at? 2. Take into consideration how much training you need for the career that you are interested in: High School Diploma: salesperson, security guard, receptionist, waiter/waitress, cashier, telephone operator. Special Career Training: auto technician, beautician, machinist, medical technician, computer operator, and commercial artist. College Degree: accountant, engineer, nurse, pilot, teacher, public relations specialist, and marketing specialist. Graduate Degree: counselor, social worker, college professor, doctor, dentist, lawyer, veterinarian, architect, and psychologist. 3. Do some research! Be sure to talk to people working the field(s) that you are interested in. If possible, find a part-time job in that field or shadow for a day. It is helpful to ask questions such as, What do you like/dislike about your job? and How did you learn your trade? You can also obtain resources regarding various careers by going to the College & Career Center, public/school library or seeing your school counselor. 2

3 Career Planning & Post-High School Options (Who Are You?) 1. What are my ambitions, dreams, hopes and values? 2. What five adjectives describe me? 3. What makes me unique? 4. What person(s) or experience(s) have had the most significant influence on my life? Why? 5. What contributions have I made to the community and the needs of others? What contributions would I like to make in the future? 6. What are my hobbies or interests outside of school? 7. What characteristics in other people are most important to me? 8. What would I do if I had unlimited funds and time? 9. Think back to freshman year who was I? How have I grown? Who am I now? Am I happy with whom I am now? 10. What are my academic strengths and weaknesses? 11. What subjects do I enjoy most/least? 12. What type of learner am I? (visual, auditory, hands-on) 13. What are my job values? How do creativity, flexibility, environment, variety, prestige, salary, and independence factor into a career choice? 3

4 Skills Needed To Maintain A Good Career: Personal Management Skills: Responsibility Attend school/work daily on time Meet school/work deadlines Demonstrate self-control & responsibility for your actions Organization Pay attention to detail Follow written and oral directions Flexibility Learn new skills Identify and suggest new ways to get the job done Career Development Work without supervision Know personal strengths and weaknesses Develop career paths Teamwork: Communication Listen to other group members Express ideas to other members Responsive Work in challenging settings and with people of different backgrounds Be willing to compromise if necessary to best accomplish a goal Contribute Actively participate within a group Know the group s rules and values Leadership Be a leader or a follower to best accomplish a goal Academic Skills: Communication Read & understand written materials Write in the language in which business is conducted Speak in the language in which business is conducted Mathematics Understand charts & graphs Understand basic math Science & Technology Problem- Solving Use mathematics to solve problems Use scientific method to solve problems Understand basic science Use tools and equipment Use research & library skills Use specialized skills & knowledge or how to access it Understand systems & complex relationships 4

5 Questions About Careers Your career is your future! It involves every aspect of your life, how much money you will make, where you will live, your relationships with others, and your personal sense of satisfaction. You will spend a major portion of your life working full-time. The average person works 40 hours a week, 50 weeks a year from age 22 through 65. That s 86,000 hours! How do I decide which career best fits me? Start by getting to know your interests, abilities, and values. Look at your everyday life and think about what classes and extracurricular activities you enjoy doing. Also, look at your hobbies and leisure activities. These things will help you make decisions during your career exploration. Think about what values are important to you. Consider how much importance is put on money, fame, job satisfaction, working outdoors or indoors, working with others or alone, working with numbers or your hands. Remember that identifying what you do not like to do is just as important as identifying what you do like to do. How can I learn more about careers? Talk with family and friends who may be able to answer your questions directly or put you in touch with someone else who can. Visit your public library and school guidance office to obtain printed materials. Talk with you school counselor or college counselor. Use Internet resources, including home pages for various companies, professional organizations and academic institutions. Contact professional and trade associations to obtain free or inexpensive career materials. Research post-high school education programs. Interview people who work in the occupation in which you are interested. What can I do to start preparing for a career? Participate in a job shadow or career trek through the College & Career Center. This will give you a more realistic picture of what this field is like on a day-to-day basis. Seek employment or volunteer work in your area of interest. This will enable you to try on a career and see if it is right for you. Join school clubs or participate in community organizations related to your career interests, which may help you develop necessary skills to achieve your career goals. 5

6 Questions about Careers Cont Where can I get education and training? Whatever career direction you choose, there is likely to be a variety of educational paths you can follow. Possibilities for career preparation include: Apprentice Programs Community Colleges Four-year colleges and Universities Military Services Private Business & Vocational Schools Most careers will require you to continue education throughout your working life, making you a lifelong learner. You might need to continue taking courses or receive training through your employer to upgrade your skills and keep you current. This will also be important should you choose to change your career focus down the road. How do I begin making post-high school education plans? The key to this question comes with choosing your career direction. Most fields include a variety of occupations requiring different levels of education and training. You will need to consider the position you want and the type of preparation required to make appropriate post-high school plans. For example, if you are interested in a career in accounting, a nine credit hour accounting clerk certificate program from a community college leads to entry level positions in accounts payable, accounts receivable, and inventory accounting. A two-year associate degree in an applied science program prepares students for employment as junior accountants in business, industry, and government. Private business and vocational schools as well as the military provide training for a variety of accounting positions. Baccalaureate degrees in accounting from four-year colleges and universities lead to careers in accounting and auditing in a variety of work settings. Becoming a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) requires testing and licensing beyond a bachelor s degree, and ongoing professional education to maintain this credential. 6

7 What are Career Clusters? Career Clusters are occupations that are grouped together because many people in these professions share similar interests and strengths. Clusters include occupations that can vary in regards to the amount of education and training needed. There are six (6) Career Clusters. Some occupations fit only into one Cluster and some can fit in more than one. For example, a restaurant owner can fit under the Human Service category and the Business category because he/she runs his/her own business. How can Career Clusters help students? Choosing a career allows students some flexibility, provides focus and can help in selecting courses, activities and part-time employment opportunities. It also helps students prepare for their future based on their interests, abilities, and desired level of education. Can students change their minds on which Career Cluster they choose? ABSOLUTELY, they can change their mind! A Career Cluster is not meant to be a permanent commitment. As students have new experiences, they may choose another Career Cluster. If so, they could discuss this with a school counselor and adjust their plans in a new career direction. What are the six Career Clusters? Arts & Communications Questions to consider? * Are you are creative thinker? * Are you imaginative, innovative, and original? * Do you like to communicate ideas? Communication Occupations Performing Arts Occupations Visual Arts Occupations Audiovisual Specialist Broadcast Technician Communications Manager Editor Interpreter/Translator Public Relations Specialist Radio/TV Announcer Reporter Technical Writer TV Director Writer Actor Choreographer Composer Dancer Model Music Director Musician Producer/Director Professional Athlete Animator Commercial Artist Fashion Designer Film Editor Floral Designer Graphic Artist Interior Designer Jewelry Designer Photographer Set Designer Camera Operator 7

8 Business, Management, & Computer Training Questions to Consider: * Do you enjoy being a leader, organizing people, and planning activities? * Do you like to work with numbers or ideas? * Do you enjoy carrying through with an idea and seeing the end product? Administrative Support Administrative Assistant Bank Teller Collection Clerk Court Reporter Data Entry Clerk Dispatcher General Office Clerk Insurance Adjuster Legal Secretary Mail Carrier Medical Secretary Receptionist Title Examiner/Searcher Word Processor Computer, Mathematical & Operations Research Actuary Computer Systems Analyst Help Desk Specialist Information Systems Manager Mathematician Software Developer Webmaster Marketing & Sales Cashier Financial Planner Insurance Agent Stock Broker Travel Agent Executive, Administrative & Managerial Accountant/Auditor College/University Admin. Budget Analyst Hotel Manager Human Resource Manager Bank Loan Officer Office Manager Postmaster Property/Real Estate Management Restaurant/Food Services Retail Sales Manager School Principal Technical Training Coordinator Recreation Facilities Manager Engineering & Industrial Technology Questions to Consider: * Are you mechanically inclined and practical? * Do you like reading diagrams and blueprints and drawing building structures? * Are you curious how things work? Construction Trades Engineering & Design Machinist & Industrial Prod. Brick Mason Carpenter Drywall Installer Electrician General Contractor Painter/Paper Hanger Roofer Aerospace Engineer Architect CAD Technician Chemical Engineer Civil Engineer Landscape Architect Mechanical Engineer Chemical Plant Operator Locksmith Machinist Plastics Operator Tool and Die Maker Welder Power Plant Generator Mechanics & Repairs Aircraft Mechanic Automotive Body Repair Automotive Service Tech Electronics Technician Heating/AC Technician Printing Operations Camera Operator Desktop Publisher Offset Press Operator Printing Press Operator Transportation & Material Air Traffic Controller Airplane Pilot Bus Driver Heavy Equipment Operator Truck Driver 8

9 Health Services Questions to Consider: * Do you like to care for people or animals that are sick, or to help them stay well? * Are you interested in studying new diseases and how the body works? * Do you enjoy observing patients and looking for changes in how they are doing? Health Assessment & Treatment Audiologist Dietician/Nutritionist Occupational Therapist Pharmacist Physical Therapist Physician Assistant Recreational Therapist Registered Nurse Respiratory Therapist Speech/Language Therapist Health-Diagnosing Practitioners Dentist Chiropractor Optometrist Physician Podiatrist Veterinarian Health Technicians Clinical Lab Tech. Dental Hygienist Dialysis Technician EKG Technician Emergency Med. Technician Health Assistants Dental Assistant Home Health Aide Medical Assistant Nurse s Aide Pharmacist Assistant Human Services Questions to Consider: * Are your friendly, open-minded and understanding? * Do you like to work with people to solve problems? * Is it important to you to do something that makes things better for other people? Education Adult Educator Archivist/Curator College Professor Counselor Librarian Teacher/Teacher Aide Vocational Rehab. Legal Judge Lawyer Paralegal Food Service Chef /Baker Server Protective Services Corrections Officer FBI Agent Firefighter Parole/Probation Officer Police Officer Private Investigator Security Guard Social & Rec. Services Alcohol/Drug Counselor Community Outreach Gerontology Aide Social Worker Recreation Worker Sports Official Social Scientist Anthropologist Archeologist Economist Historian Political Scientist Urban & Regional Planner Personal Services Barber Cosmetologist Custodian Flight Attendant Funeral Director Message Therapist 9

10 Natural Resources & Environmental Sciences Questions to consider: * Are you a nature lover? * Are you practical and curious about the physical world, and interested in plants and animals? * Do you like to observe, learn and investigate or solve problems? * Do you like working with chemicals or conducting experiments? Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing Life Sciences Physical Sciences Agronomist Animal Scientist Fish & Game Warden Forester Groundskeeper Horticulturist Landscaper Nursery/Greenhouse Manager Pest Control Worker Turf Management Specialist Veterinarian Technician Zookeeper Agricultural & Food Scientist Anatomist Biochemist Biomedical Engineer Botanist Forensic Scientist Geneticist Marine Biologist Microbiology Technologist Soil Conservationist Zoologist Astronomer Chemist Geologist Meteorologist Oceanographer Physicist Weather Observer 10

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