How To Choose A Career As a Student

A good career plan is an ongoing process that you will use to organize and track your professional development throughout the course of your working life. How to Choose a Career as a Student is designed to assist you in visualizing the steps you need to take and how to implement them in order to reach your career goals.

Career development plans lower the likelihood of you making rash decisions and enable you to identify when you’re ready to pursue new possibilities and acquire new abilities. These are just two of the many reasons why career planning is so important.

How To Choose A Career

For some aspiring college students, selecting a professional path can occasionally seem like a huge step that is overwhelming and difficult. By providing straightforward answers to questions, students can determine which course to take.

Let’s look at How to Choose a Career as a Student and things to keep in my mind when looking past college to enter the real world.

1. Your Skills and Passion

What is your passion? If given the choice, what would you do to stay happy? Even though your chosen professional path may not align perfectly with your initial thoughts, take some time to reflect and list your top motivations for getting out of bed each morning. What motivates you? Do you notice any common ties once you’ve written that initial list?

Furthermore, take a minute and write down your top skills (writing, mathematics, computer coding, etc.) Do you see any connections that jump out between the two lists? If you do, you might be well on your way down your career path.

2. Your Goals

What is it that you most desire from your career? Which is your main source of motivation — a healthy work-life balance or a high salary? Do you wish to work remotely from your kitchen table or explore the world at your leisure? 

Which would you prefer—a large plot of land in a more rural area or an apartment in the center of a major city? How do you envision yourself in five, ten, or twenty years?

Before you begin searching for your possible careers, you need to start plotting out what your future could look like. Write up a list of what is most important to you. This is where creating a vision board could also come in handy to help you begin to hone in on the pillars of your potential career.

3. Your Personality

Understanding what makes you unique is just as vital as understanding what you enjoy doing and what you are skilled at.

It would probably not be a good idea for you to run a library if you are a people person. You might not want to work in customer service or hospitality if you are more of an introvert.

4. Your Values

What matters most to you in terms of securing a job? You must decide which values will motivate you to work for your goals at the same time that you need to start thinking about them. Since many of the features on your list may be related to your values, it can be helpful to have it close at hand for this activity.

Which kind of leadership structure or work culture do you believe you would fit in best? Are there any things that, in your opinion, are “deal breakers”? While some of these solutions might be more obvious than others, many of them might take years to become clear.

5. Explore Career Ideas

This is all about researching the job market and career pathways that interest you and narrowing down your options.

Investigate the local, national, and international employment markets to learn about the major trends in the industry you have in mind for your dream career. This will assist you in learning about additional job options and identifying roles that are growing or shrinking.

There are three overarching job sectors. These are:

  • Private – sole traders, partnerships and limited companies
  • Public – local and national governments, plus their agencies and chartered bodies
  • Not-for-profit – often referred to as the third sector, or the charity and voluntary work sector.

Browsing job profiles may introduce you to some less obvious career paths where your skills and qualifications could be useful.

6. Your Potential Salary

You have a list of possible occupations. Great! It is now time to get an idea of what the salary ranges of those possible careers could be — because rent and bills will not pay themselves.

For a more comprehensive examination of past and present pay for certain professions, consult additional web resources like PayScale, Glassdoor, or Salary.com.

To gain a better understanding of how much specific professions pay relative to the general cost of living in a given area of the country, jot down the salary ranges provided for each position and search by the location you wish to live in.

7. Your Job Prospects and Outlooks

Practicality must also be taken into account in addition to enthusiasm; for example, you must consider which jobs are expected to become more in demand in the future and which are expected to decline in order to satisfy the demands of our evolving society.

Even if we are unable to look into a crystal ball to predict what jobs will be in demand in ten years, there are methods that can help us get a better understanding of the industries that are expanding the fastest and have the greatest need.

8. Your Educational Costs and Training

To put it plainly, the level of education and training required for every given occupation varies. Graduate school is necessary for some. Internships are necessary for some. Becoming a doctor is one of the occupations that requires a particular amount of resident hours.

As you continue to narrow down your list of potential careers, be aware of the amount of education and training required to pursue a certain career. 

This will assist you as you start making college plans and managing your money by enabling you to roughly map out when you can transition from student to practitioner and estimate the potential expenditures of those educational pathways.

9. Resources At School and Home

Seeking out a conventional, in-person third party, like a school counselor, can also beneficial. A counselor can assist you in visualizing your professional path in addition to offering information to help you decide on the next phase of your further education.

Finally, you can always have a conversation with a parent or other family member, particularly if they work in a field that interests you. If they aren’t, there’s a strong likelihood they know someone who is, and they may be able to arrange an informative interview.

10. Your Learning Opportunities

Arranging an informational interview with a representative of the industry is one of the finest ways to gain a sense of the work environment. Send an email to someone to arrange a 15-minute phone call, Zoom session, or, if you’re local, an in-person coffee date.

Prepare a brief list of questions to ask, with the last question being “How can I help you?” Ask who else you should contact. Follow up with a thank-you note, and, before long, you will be well on your way to learning about the art of networking as you continue to progress down your career path.

Now that you have an idea of what careers and majors may interest you, you can begin searching for colleges that have majors to match your needs.

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