For many soon to be high school leavers around Australia, the end of the year is a time for celebration. You can wave goodbye to exams, homework, and the dreaded tone of the school bell. However, graduating can also bring much uncertainty. Trying to figure out what’s next can be difficult but thankfully there are a lot of places to find career advice.
Use your school career counselor
Many high schools have a dedicated department to offer student career advice and support. Reaching out to your school career advisors is a smart move. They have years of insight into your development, interests and personality. They can use this to provide tailored advice that you could use to work out your next steps.
Self-reflection and research
Understanding yourself is really important to finding the right job. Start by writing down what you are interested in and enjoy, what you can’t stand, and how you are motivated. These traits will help you identify what types of careers you may be suited for.
They will also help professionals provide more tailored career advice - should you need help figuring out your next steps.
There are plenty of tools out there to help you, including the Australian Government’s Job Outlook career quiz. It can help you match your work style to a career that may suit your personality workstyle and skillset.
Ask your friends and family
We are usually our own worst critics. Being honest about what you are good at doesn’t always come easy. This is where our personal cheer squad comes in. Talking to friends and family can give you insights into your talents and skills that you may not have considered. Having seen you at your best (and worst), they are also well placed to chat to about your ideas for future careers.
What If I didn’t get the results I wanted?
So, what if your marks came back and your original plans need to change? It’s not the end of the world. If you were planning on going to University, there may still be pathways for you to attend. You may just have to undertake some bridging courses first. Another option could be looking at vocational education.
Vocational education offers the ability to work while learning. This allows you to enter the workforce and get a feel for full-time work while earning a certificate or diploma. You may also be able to use those qualifications to help you get into university. To find out more, read our article on vocational education.
What if I am living with a disability illness or injury?
Do you live with a disability, injury or illness and you’re looking for specific career advice? There are a number of employment services that support people as they prepare to leave school. You could either access the Eligible School Leavers program or potentially the School Leaver Employment Supports (SLES) as part of an NDIS plan.
Both services help people living with a disability make the move from school to work by providing support, building confidence and gaining experience.