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Most of the teenagers have confusion while choosing their career path after high school.

Is there a better way to sort out many of the teenagers confusion, by letting them known about which areas they are good at and at which areas they are going to excel? This will give them a clear view about their future. #engineering #medicine #law #architecture #high-school #arts #politics #freelance #freelancer

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Subject: Career question for you

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Nicole’s Answer

Hi damodar. I see that you posted this question a little while ago so I hope my answer to you (or others who may read this response) is still helpful.

Similar to the guidance that has already been provided about reaching out and getting advice from career/guidance counselors at your school, there are other life events that can contribute to teenagers working through their confusion about what path to choose after high school.

In my case, it was an airplane ride :). I was about 13 or 14 years old and to pass the time, I pulled out my book of white paper (no lines) , my pack of thin, multi-colored markers and my ruler. I used to love to draw pictures with evenly spaced lines. Another passenger who was sitting next to me, commented about how precise I was being in drawing my lines. I didn't only use the ruler to make sure my lines where straight...I also used the ruler to make sure that I precisely measured how much space was between each line. My recollection of my encounter with that passenger was that was the first time I heard the word "engineer" referred to me. He commented that I could be an architect or an engineer. Years ago, I graduated with an engineering degree and I still have the good fortune to work in areas of engineering and technology in my professional career.

In addition to that small event, during my middle and high school years, I became pretty strong in math. And I was pretty comfortable with asking lots of questions about how things worked and why they worked that way.

I shared this feedback with you because sometimes life events (even small ones) can play a big role in helping young people decide on the best path for them. Sometimes it is feedback (hopefully positive feedback) from a teacher, family member, co-worker or friend. Phrases like "Wow, you're really good at that. You should think about doing more of that....". That type of feedback has the power to get the "thinking juices" flowing and can help to build an inner compass that can be very helpful in guiding individuals on their path for sustained success.

Hope you find this answer helpful and best of luck!
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Roland’s Answer

Career counselors are provided in school for all that have this concern. I great resource as well are your teachers as they are great gages of your strengths and opportunities. I would suggest writing down the top 10 things you are passionate about to assist your with where you should be looking for your future career.

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Katharine’s Answer

Hi Damodar,

You’re 100% right. Most teenagers aren’t sure exactly what career path they’d like to choose after high school. You’re off to a great start by taking a proactive approach and reaching out to learn more. Since this is such a common question, most schools offer some type of career counseling services. Specifically, many places offer a career assessment that will ask questions which help explore your likes and dislikes, then recommend potential career paths based on your responses. This can be a great starting point. If your school doesn’t offer this, then just head to Google and type in “Career assessment” and you will have a multitude of resources right there at your fingertips. Before I recommend the second thing you can do, I’ll tell you a little about myself. When I was in high school, I thought I wanted to be an accountant based on my research, likes, and dislikes. It wasn’t until I actually started taking my first college level accounting classes shortly after graduating that I realized it wasn’t for me and I wasn’t sure what to do next. To earn some income, I ended up getting a job working for Verizon as a call center agent. This may not have had anything to do with my initial career aspiration, but as I worked, I began to learn more about my own strengths, opportunities, and happiness. For example, I learned that my strong communication skills and ability to relate to different customers made me a successful sales person. Even more than sales, I loved the feeling I got when I was able to teach one of my peers how to be successful, too. That’s when I realized I wanted to lead and develop people. Ultimately, it was like my career chose me. It evolved naturally as I maintained a strong work ethic and continued to look for ways to positively impact the business while enjoying what I was doing at the same time. It also helped to be working with others because people bring unique perspectives to the table and if you’re open for feedback, viewing yourself through the lenses of somebody else can oftentimes be the catalyst to figuring out your own next steps. This brings me to my second piece of advice- there is no amount of research that can substitute experience so get out there and get involved. You don’t have to join the workforce to start exploring what type of work brings you satisfaction. Find somewhere you can volunteer a few hours a week and/or find different student organizations to get involved in where you work with a team on projects like a fundraiser or an event or even run for an official position within the student organization. Then, be open to feedback and proactively seek it, just like you did with this question. Once you understand how your strengths and passions can contribute to delivering impactful services, outcomes, and/or business results, you’ll have a much better idea of what career field to choose. Keep up the good work and good luck!

Katharine recommends the following next steps:

Take a career assessment
Find an opportunity to get additional experience, then seek feedback around your strengths and opportunities (Google 360 feedback for more ideas)
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