What do you want to be when you grow up?
As children, we were asked that question all the time, but as teenagers or young adults, we do not get asked this question as often, when it is most crucial. Whereas it has been proven that many college graduates are successfully employed in professions not directly related to their academic field, it is still a matter of importance that you plan your future career why you are still in high school. Below is a simple guideline to help you plan your career.
- Assess yourself. When choosing a future career, you have to take into consideration your interests, passions, strengths and weaknesses. If you're good in mathematics, a career in the accounting profession might be right for you. If you are more interested in sports than anything else, you can consider sports science as an appropriate college course for you.
Similarly, if you think you cannot afford a four-year college education with your family's finances, then by all means consider taking vocational courses at your local community or technical college. You will learn some marketable skills that will enable you to get a job soon and perhaps, by then, you can pursue further studies.
- Research your options. Once you determine which field you want to specialize in, look into the different schools that you can get in to. Having a college or university in mind will allow you to stay focused on your goal. If you want to go to an Ivy League school, then you have to really make an effort to excel in your academics and take on some extracurricular work while you're still in high school.
- Visit your career counselor. Every high school has a career counselor or guidance counselor who can help you evaluate your career plan. These people specialize in helping students choose a career from a myriad of options, so they would be definitely able to help you narrow down you choices and help pick the most suitable future career for you. Also, a career or guidance counselor can give a better perspective on the current requirements and costs of a college education.
- Make a career plan. Knowing what you want and knowing how to get what you want are two different things. In order to get that career you want in the future, you need to make an action plan now using all the information you gathered in the previous steps, identify actions that you need to take in order to get to your goal. Consider whether you need to take advance classes, do volunteer work, get involved in the local community, or take a part-time job to gain experience. You should also consider whether you need to get a part-time job to help finance your way to college.
The steps outlined above only give you a general idea on how to choose your future career. Try to perform each step and see whether you can start making your own future career plan now.