When I visit with students, I'm often surprised that they don't know the education level of their parents or how much money their parents make. I would encourage parents to visit with their kids about education. Did you attend a college or vocational school? Why or why not? Would you have done things differently now that you are an adult? How much money does it take to live "comfortably", in your opinion? Does your student know how to figure the hourly equivalent of $30,000 per year, for example?
Listed below are but a few ways to encourage kids to start thinking about the future.
- All of our students have access to Nebraska Career Connections. Students and parents alike can log on and take surveys regarding interests, skills, and values. Encourage your students to think for THEMSELVES ....this is about the student and their likes/dislikes and interests.
- All of our sophomores take the PLAN test. This test is produced by the ACT organization and gives students an idea of how their interests stack up against interests of people in various occupations. John Holland developed a career guidance model that ACT uses; student are "classified" into six areas (based upon interests):
- All of our juniors take the ASVAB test. Although this instrument is often thought of as a 'military' test, we use it for another exploration tool.
- Consider letting your student do some job-shadowing. Our Health Professions Club students are STRONGLY encouraged to do job-shadowing, and I would be glad to set up experiences for other students as well. For example, if your student is considering Elementary Education, perhaps we can see about having them shadow at Chadron Primary for an hour or two.
- College visits are another excellent way to get your student on the right track. Set up a visit with the Admissions Department and let your student visit with personnel in the department the they are considering. For example, when my daughter was a junior, we visited UNK, School of Mines, and Wesleyan to determine what career options were available to students with an interest in math. What are the jobs? What is the placement rate? What is the range of salaries?
- Start these conversations EARLY!!! Senior year will be here before you know it.