Tips for Year 12’s in a year of uncertainty……
This is an extract from an article I was writing about Year 12’s and how to manage during these times of uncertainty with post Covid fluctuations in the job market. From my experience having worked with Year 12 students over many years, here are 5 things that may help ease this rocky time:
- Engage with your career advisor! Being one myself, I know I am completely biased, but this can really help you. If I read a relevant piece of information, or hear of some new course, or find out a new fact, it can really help the next student who walks through my door. You want someone who is both well informed and looking out for you.
- Engage with institutions As a basic rule of thumb, if you are interested in Universities, Colleges or TAFE campuses in your area, then contact them and engage with them on social media. Find out about the many “future student” events, whether virtually or in person. I find that students who do this are a lot less overwhelmed, as they are already moving and talking in that space. They have already been to a Q&A session, or an open evening, or even studied in their library. This all helps to get a feel for a place.
- Talk to adults who enjoy their jobs. The data suggests that families (read ‘parents, and especially Mothers’) can influence career choices by up to 70%. The messages that students hear at home have a significant influence. If a student lives with a fulfilled and happy Psychologist-Mum, for example, that sends a powerful message about that occupation. Equally, the impact of a stressed-out unhappy Accountant-Dad is also significant.
- Try to remember that there are multiple paths. This is probably the hardest point for students to understand. There is always choice. Sometimes you have to follow a path for a while to realise that the path is not for you. Students come from a school environment where they are familiar with the syllabus, the timetable and the structure of school; it is a safe linear path. The road ahead for them may not be. The uncertain, unfamiliar path can take time to get used and can be unsettling. The sooner this is embraced, the easier it will become.
- Work on your interpersonal and personal (soft) skills. I see so much effort, thought and worry that goes into Year 12 studies. Once the ATAR significance fades into the background (and it will, quickly), what you learnt during those final school years will be of real value. Did you learn good manners? Did you become a good team player, team leader or considerate team-mate? Did you learn to engage with people and be respectful and courteous? These are all areas that are often overlooked, but will be more important as you embark on your career and head out into the world.
Also it may be pertinent to note the recent changes to University funding, especially in the increasing costs to students of Humanities, Social Sciences and Business. Read more about this here. Read about skills demanded from jobs and those acquired through Arts and Humanities.