I have worked in education since 1993 specialising in career guidance since 1998. In this time I have been working as a Career Guidance Counsellor in public and private sector. In my experience client’s value and need in-depth, client focused career guidance to help them get clarity, build confidence and gain greater self-awareness to make those all-important career and educational decisions. While working as a career guidance counsellor, end -of -year feedback from students indicated repeatedly that the most beneficial aspect of the guidance programme for them was the 1-to-1 careers meeting, scoring an average 9/10.
Nowadays students and parents are faced with the challenge of reduced access to fully qualified Guidance Counsellors in schools coupled with high dropout rates in college.
- Since 2012, guidance counselling service provision in second level education has experienced cuts in the order of 24%with a huge 59% reduction in 1-to-1 guidance counselling (IGC 2013).
- An alarming concern in our education system is the dropout rate from 3rd level with an average of 15% not completing first year. The rate of dropout varies depending on:
- Course ( 1 in 4 students drop out from computer science while up to 98% stay on in law/medicine/education),
- Academic performance
- Gender difference with higher rates of dropout for boys (ref thejounal.ie).
The cost of such mistakes are multiple – financial cost, cost to your confidence, feeling lost and directionless (check pros and cons page for more details).
Over the years I have seen students invest huge time and effort into their studies, added grinds, revision courses, extra subjects and tuition outside school, with the intention to maximise their results. Achieving your best academic results will maximise access to a wide range of options, selecting the best ones that suit your interests, aptitudes, personality requires time and effort to ensure your investment of study time leads you in the best matched educational and/or career path.
I would recommend a senior cycle student spends a minimum of 1 hour a week doing the necessary research on courses, colleges, and grant applications ( www.susi.ie, check links) as well as going to relevant careers exhibitions, open days (check www.qualifax.ie) . Subject choice is one of the first considerations when looking at careers, and marks the beginning of your journey to effective career decisions. Investing time and energy from Transition year (or Junior Certificate if Transition is not an option) is very important.
Finally parents offer an important contribution in this process of discovery. Approximately 70% of students feel their parents are a key influence on their decisions around careers. Parents offer very valuable insights into the strengths, abilities, talents of their children and as a result are included in the process of career guidance (see packages)
As a result I have decided to offer in-depth client focused career guidance on a private capacity while taking a break from secondary education.
Check Services to see which option suits your needs.