High school students, at their age, have acquired a lot of knowledge. They still wonder what they are going to do with the knowledge attained or in which job they will ‘fit in’. If you are also going through the same fix, take a more cognitive approach to find where your future lies.
We bring you here some of the career exploration activities that help you find your calling after completing high school or levels beyond that. You can do these activities along with your friends or may take the help of teacher or placement cells in colleges wherever external support is required.
Interesting career exploration activities
- Interview a successful CEO
Interviewing is an art that can help you get the fact right from the horse’s mouth. The students can request CEOs or key executives of companies operating in your city to visit your high school as guests. It requires:
- Making a list of companies or offices in your city
- Sending a formal invitation letter to the guest CEO
- Preparing a questionnaire with the help of friends
- Organizing a session for Q & As.
It is an activity that may require you to reach out to the school management or teacher to help you get the CEO for the session.
A quick tip: Refer to the alumni list of your own school; the successful alumni will love to come down to help you and revisit their high school time.
- Live a day in the shoes of…
How about knowing firsthand the job responsibilities, challenges, and rewards that come with any job profile? Organize a day visit to the companies and let the high schooler spend it in the company of the professional that he/she wants to become.
High schoolers may be selected based on the interest they show and match with the profiles where their interests are utilized the best.
Some of the job profiles that usually get the attention of high schoolers are:
- Physical Training Expert
- Veterinary Doctor
- Public Relations Officer
- Air Traffic Controller
- Marine Biologist
Try to include the job profiles which are not usually known. It may help high schoolers get an idea of the jobs which they may not hear about from family or friends.
- Take Surveys
Career exploration surveys are designed to explore the interests of the students. The main motive of these surveys is to prepare the profile of the students and match them with the opportunities available.
Students want to take up careers that are likely to fill them with monetary as well as emotional satisfaction. For that correct profiling of aptitude and the areas where that bend of mind is utilized the best, the surveys are designed.
- Chalk out career pathways in different fields
What does reaching the dream career look like? Having an idea about it beforehand helps you know how to prepare for different phases and milestones. We all have readily available information sources – working parents, elder siblings, teachers – who can share their journey.
Using their experiences, you can draw a flow chart that tells about the courses to join, the entry levels in various fields, the experience required to move to higher positions, etc. Thus, you get in front of you a visual presentation of the career graph in the desired field. For example, you can make a career path for becoming a surgeon. That will help you know classes to join, how to apply, entry-level jobs, etc.
This simple activity can help students stay focused on their path to reaching their career goals and make efforts in the correct direction.
- Brainstorming career ideas with friends
Tweak in the career aspect in your ‘Know your friends’ activity and you will get an interesting career exploration activity to do with your friends. As you grow and reach the high school level, you get a vague idea of your areas of interest, aptitude, and life you want to live as an adult.
With all this information stuffed inside, you can find an outlet in your friends with whom you can sit and brainstorm ideas. Brainstorming serves two ways. First, you get to know about various fields available for making a career. Second, you find friends who share your aspirations. Thus, you find out the company that is likely to stay with you in life beyond high school.
- Career assessment charts
These are similar to surveys, but offer a peek into the level of liking the high school students have in different areas of work. The list of the jobs is added in the rightmost column and the degree of liking – least liked to most liked columns are to be ticked in front of every job. It helps the students discover their strengths, liking, and aptitude for various job profiles.
These charts are available in the form of free interests profiler and personality profiler too.
- Career exploration worksheets
These worksheets are designed keeping various purposes in mind. The students can fill these worksheets by doing research or using their literary skills. A few examples of free worksheets for career exploration are:
- Find your Right Job Worksheet: It is a research-oriented resource to help understand find the opportunities available after completing college. To fill out this worksheet, the students may go through the employment news, career portals, ‘Careers’ section of the business websites, etc., and shortlist the jobs which they find appealing. Also, they will fill out the details like qualifications required for the job, job responsibilities, and growth possibilities of the job.
- Career research worksheet: It is a part of life skill activity too. The students can fill out the worksheet stating the scope of the job, how it serves the community, how it offers stability in life, and what factors of the job match their personal aspirations.
- Income from career worksheet: It is again an exploratory activity where high schoolers note down the job profiles and find the salary packages and perks offered to the candidates.
Free sites where you can find these career exploration activities
Wondering where you can get the ready-to-use support for carrying out career exploration activities? Worry no further! Listed here are some of the best sites that provide you the free resources to help you with career exploration.
- Career Research Handout at Teachers Pay Teachers
- Interest profiler at My Next Move
- Career Assessment Questionnaire at Truity
- Career Exploration Worksheets and Activities at Workforce Solutions
- Career Planning Resource by Bizworld
To become successful in life, planning from an early stage helps a lot. Career planning and exploration as a part of the high school curriculum make complete sense as it helps students understand their skill-set and go for jobs where they are happy and actively contributing. By taking cognizance of the courses required to do and jobs that offer good salaries, experience required for growth, etc., the students can be clear in their minds about the future. It will help them have an action plan that yields positive results.