Youngsters these days are flooded with too many choices but there are too little voices helping them to make informed decisions. There is a dire need for career counselling, and there has to be loads of awareness for the student and the counsellor to get into the right groove.
Few youngsters call career counselling a holy grail and few weaves a lot of myths around it. But, first things first, as a counsellor you have to put enough thought into it to understand what is career counselling and what it is not. All your learnings will translate into a strong guidance mechanism.
Career Counselling – What most of you know about it:
Comprehensive understanding to the student profile
The first step in career counselling is getting a comprehensive understanding of the students – the strengths, weaknesses, interests, hobbies, academics and every data point that’s useful for a career counsellor to work on.
Awareness on various career options
The counsellor should build awareness and update periodically about the different course and career options that are available for students. They should be well-versed the timelines of the application process to smoothen the application process. GCC is a comprehensive platform that covers most of the courses. This aids counsellors to give better guidance to students
Writing a Career Action Plan
After understanding the student profile and listing out available career options, the next in line is making a concrete action plan. This can be a written document or a framework that marks the crucial milestones in the student journey. Also, include any anticipated roadblocks and ways to overcome them.
Helping to draft Essays and SOPs
Many students lack the art of writing good essays for the universities. This happens due to the inability to project their achievements and strengths, and align them to the admission process and, at times, also because of their poor writing skills. Counsellors help students identify their true self and translate it into words.
Career Counselling – What most of you might miss out on
This is a critical component in the career guidance. Rather than starting a counselling session with the likes and dislikes of the child or picking a list from the available options, the best practice is to being with an assessment. This helps students to dig deep into their personality and understand their strengths. The psychometric tests are spread across various levels and each brings out a key trait of the person. From there, counsellors can generate a list of options that are a good fit for the students.
What most of the counsellors miss out on is integration of technology with the service offerings. If the works progress in the conventional mode, it consumes more time and the students may become impatient. And also, at times, the quicker we act the happier are the customers. The unified interface has to offer end-to-end solutions starting from psychometric tests to highlighting course options to scholarship guidance to delivering reports. This helps counsellors to pick the reports at ease and work on them. GCC is a platform that rides high on integrating technology with career counselling.
Emphasis on non-academic activities
Global universities and most of the Indian ones have started looking beyond academics for their admissions. They are emphasizing a lot on the student profile which is a blend of academic and non-academic activities alongside highlighting the core areas. Once the student selects a dream university, the counsellors create a roadmap for the students. They can advice the students to opt for career guidance products like ProMap that helps in building a focused university or college-specific profile.
Counsellors don’t just guide the students, they should also set realistic and relatable goals to them. They can use a SMART goals approach to help them plan their actions.
S – Specific
M – Measurable
A – Agreed upon
R – Realistic
T – Time-bound
They should prompt students to write their goals and help them to achieve them. The students take it as a direction map to achieve their short and long-term goals. It should also include any anticipated roadblocks that could fall in the way of the student’s goals. The counsellors should offer smart solutions to overcome such barriers.