Guiding Your Child’s Career Journey
Every young child dreams of becoming an astronaut, an actor, or a professional athlete. As they grow older, they may develop additional passions for fields like science, math, or literature. As a parent, it’s your job to support your child’s career journey and empower your kids as they discover new interests.
Guiding your child’s career journey can help them figure out what they do not want to do, too. This is crucial, as you don’t want your child to realize that they have hemophobia during their third year of a surgery program.
Giving your child a little boost is also a great way to help them gain experience early on in life. For example, if your kid shows an interest in entertainment, you might want to help them along the way by signing them up for acting classes or content creation. This will make things that much easier when they start applying for entry-position roles in the industry.
Becoming a Learner
No matter your child’s goals, a strong set of grades is sure to help. No employer will turn down an applicant because of a GPA that is too high, and great grades will open doors when applying for universities.
Foregrounding the importance of education helps your child become a lifelong learner, too. This is crucial, as your kid will need to know how to learn new skills when they enter the workforce. By teaching them how to learn and placing a premium on education, you show them that they have the skills and aptitude necessary to overcome challenges and adapt to their new job.
Becoming a lifelong learner isn’t just good for your child’s career prospects. Folks who consider themselves learners benefit from improved mental health, exhibit practical skills like speaking a second language, and are more likely to connect with supportive communities. This will serve them well in the professional world, where they’ll stand out from the crowd due to their resilience and aptitude for learning.
If you want your child to find success in their career, you’ll need to help them build key professional skills. Ideally, this will be a blend of employable hard skills (like coding or content creation) and soft skills (like leadership and communication). Emphasizing skills is crucial, as they’ll lean heavily on the skills they develop in childhood when they enter the workforce.
Fortunately, you don’t need to be a professional programmer or a polyglot to teach your kid key skills. Instead, focus on signing them up for educational experiences like:
- Sports teams that suit their skills
- Exchange student experiences
- Coding classes
- Music Lessons
You can also help your child learn how to create content and start a social media side hustle. This can be deeply empowering, as they’ll be able to earn a little extra pocket money from ad revenue while building the skills that content creators use in the professional world.
Volunteering for your local community with your child isn’t just a moral thing to do. Civic engagement opportunities look great on your kid’s CV and will help them gain experience in the real world. This is key if you want to help guide your child towards a career that serves the community in some way.
For example, if your kid has a passion for reading and research, they may want to become a librarian. Becoming a librarian requires strong interpersonal skills, curiosity, and a passion for analytics. Many libraries offer voluntary positions to folks who are interested in the career, and high school students may qualify for internships and work-study programs.
Volunteering helps children understand how to work as part of a team. This can be deeply empowering for kids who have lofty career goals but struggle to work well with others. By signing your child up for volunteering activities, you help them get hands-on experience in the real world. This can help your kid mature quickly and give them insights into work-life that their peers may not have developed.
STEM Based Careers
Careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) tend to pay well and are professionally rewarding. Pursuing a career path in a field like cybersecurity can help your child use their passion for tech in a professional context. Cybersecurity roles come with great job security and will be around for years to come, too.
If your child is civic-minded and has a passion for sustainability, you may want to guide them towards a career in renewable energy. Renewables are on the rise currently, and there are plenty of great career paths to choose from, including:
- Solar photovoltaic installer
- Wind turbine technician
- Software developer
- Green building architect
- Data scientist
These careers lean heavily on the skills your child will learn in STEM classes. They serve a social good, too, as data scientists and software developers minimize our carbon footprint and empower folks to use more renewable energy. This can be a great way for your child to express their interest in STEM while pursuing a career that brings them pride and personal fulfillment.
Guiding your child’s career journey can be tricky if they do not know what they want to do with their life yet. However, you can still set your kid up for success by fostering a lifelong passion for learning. This will help you foreground the importance of transferable skills and will motivate them to sign up for volunteer opportunities. This is crucial if they’re hoping to break into a demanding field quickly, as they’ll need a strong CV when they leave education.
About the Author
Katie Brenneman is a passionate writer specializing in education, mental health, family lifestyle and online safety. When she isn’t writing, you can find her with her nose buried in a book or hiking with her dog, Charlie. You can follow her on Twitter.