Every parent wants their child to find success after high school, but some career paths can be more challenging than others.
Here, Sarah Strohbeck, a career readiness and counselor consultant with the Macomb Intermediate School District (MISD). offers insight into which career paths see the highest rate of student success and what kids should consider when choosing what they want to do after high school.
Picking a path
According to Strohbeck, students should consider three things when selecting a career path:
- Does this career align with my skills and interests?
- Is this career in demand, sustainable and does it offer a good wage?
- Do I understand what is needed to access this career?
To answer these questions, Strohbeck suggests students explore the paths they are most interested in before locking themselves into something.
“To learn more about their career path, students can job shadow, attend career fairs and explore online career planning tools that have great videos,” she says. “They can also interview someone in the path they are considering as well.”
Parents can also help their students explore these career paths even further through travel or community activities.
For careers that take a little more work or time to find success in, it’s also important that students plan out each step of their educational journey to ensure that they can pay their bills while attending college classes or earning advanced certificates.
“Students should look at the education required to be employed in that career, especially those that require a master’s degree and then see how they can select a bachelor’s degree that will make them employable as they transition to a graduate program,” Strohbeck explains.
“For example, I always knew I wanted to become a school counselor which requires a master’s degree. In my journey to get there I earned my bachelor’s degree in education and I was a high school teacher for many years while working on my master’s. This allowed me to gain experience, have a great job and also be financially stable while I continued my career journey.”
Top career paths in Macomb County
Information technology, health and trades are three of the career paths that kids typically find success in. According to Strohbeck, the jobs for students in these fields are “limitless.”
Whether your student picks these paths or not, parents can help their students achieve career success by teaching them the “soft skills” that translate well to any career.
“The biggest thing we can do to prepare our students for the future of work is to emphasize their ‘soft skills’ so that they can conduct themselves as a professional in any environment. Being punctual, a good communicator and team player will do more to advance their career options than any degree can,” Strohbeck says.
“The degree will certainly open the door for someone, but their soft skills will get them through the door. The world of work is rapidly changing faster than preparation programs can keep up, so it is vital that our young workforce is adaptable and knows how to learn and relearn.”