5 Ways to Help High School Students Choose a Career Path

A high school student choosing a career after high school.

Careers start well before the first day of a new job. That’s why it’s important for parents and teachers to help high school online, homeschool, and distance learning students pick a career and prepare for the future. Sitting down with your child and discussing possible career choices can help you both get an idea of future career opportunities. Here are some tips to get started.

Choosing a career after high school is one of the most important decisions your child will make. That’s why it’s important for parents and teachers to know how to provide career resources for high school students to help them prepare for the future.

Sitting down with your child and discussing possible career choices for high school students can help you both get an idea of what your child would like to do in the future. Here are some tips to get started on how to choose a career after high school:

1. Help Your Student Discover Their Interests and Talents

Employ your child’s natural gifts, hobbies, and talents as the basis for your discussion about choosing a career path after high school.

Does your student spend their free time reading books or coding? Is your child interested in athletics or animals? Or, has your student participated in extracurricular activities that could lead to a career? These are all clues on the path to discovering the best career ideas that suit your high school student.

2. Consider Your High Schooler’s Academic Strengths

Which academic subjects interest your student the most? Create a list of their favorite high school subjects, as well as the subjects in which they excel the most.

Encourage your child to be specific. For example, if their top two subjects are science and math, be specific about the subject area or level—biology, chemistry, algebra, calculus, and so on.

This is a helpful and inspiring exercise to generate career ideas for high school students that align with their interests and skills.

3. Identify Your Student’s 5 Greatest Personal or Social Strengths

To expand on this exercise, have your student create another list of their top five greatest personal or social strengths. It’s sometimes difficult to identify one’s own strengths. As a helpful starting point, your student can ask other people in their life for key traits to get them started.

If your child’s strengths and abilities need more clarification, your student can ask their friends, teachers, or coaches to pick the traits that best describe them. Your high schooler can also take aptitude tests that can help pinpoint their strengths.

4. Explore Trending Careers

Trending career lists can be a helpful starting point for choosing a career path after high school.

While your child may not pursue a career solely for financial gain, it may make sense to see if their shortlist of potential careers will lead to a lucrative job. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics lists the top 20 fastest-growing occupations along with salary information.

This information can help you and your student narrow down career options or identify a list of potential careers to explore further.

5. Discuss Career Options with Their High School Counselor

You can also encourage your student to meet with their high school counselor. Counselors help students prepare for college, careers, and more. In addition to career planning for high school students, counselors can advise your student on selecting colleges, getting ready for college admissions testing, and applying for scholarships and college admission.

Ask your high school student what interests, work environments, or rewards they think will be most important in the careers they have shown interest in. For more insight, have your child take this quiz that helps students pick a college major or career.

After taking the quiz, your child can explore additional career resources for high school students that will help them visualize the career path of their choice.

Career guidance for high school students is available through many online education programs, including Pearson Online Academy. Learn more about college prep and career-readiness for your high school student.

Careers start well before the first day of a new job. That’s why it’s important for parents and teachers to help high school online, homeschool, and distance learning students pick a career and prepare for the future. Sitting down with your child and discussing possible career choices can help you both get an idea of future career opportunities. Here are some tips to get started.

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