Tuesday 7 May 2013

Getting The Right Career Advice

Why it’s important to decide what you want to study early

From the day you can choose your subjects, you are constantly made aware of how your choices will affect your future. Even if you have chosen a career, it can be difficult to decide on the right subjects or courses to support your career path. Starting the process early and planning in advance will make sure that you don’t have to catch-up or run into dead-ends.

Deciding on a career
Deciding on a career might be a daunting task. Visit your school or college’s career counselor, who will be able to help you with your decisions. You can also do some thinking yourself! Ask yourself what your interests are and if you have any skills or personal strengths? By recognizing your interests, skills and strengths, you might be able to identify or narrow down your options.

You can complete our free Career Aptitude test to assess your skills and interests, which will give you an indication of the type of career that you are best fitted for. We cannot guarantee that this fun assessment will match you with your perfect career, but it is a wonderful tool to narrow down your choices and open avenues that you might never have thought to explore!

Speak to family or friends already working in your chosen industry. Ask them questions about their day-to-day activities, their responsibilities, what they enjoy and perhaps even what they do not enjoy about their job.

It might be worth contacting a company or business and commit to job shadowing or work experience. Job shadowing and work experience will give you a chance to observe day-to-day activities (for example, you might not expect a teacher to do as much administration).

Choosing the right subjects, degree, diploma or qualification
Once you know what career you would like to follow, you can speak to a career advisor to make sure that you choose the correct subjects required to meet a degree or diploma’s prerequisites (you might need mathematics and science for certain careers). Many careers also involve specific qualifications to make sure that you have the knowledge and skills required to do the job (for example, you cannot just decide to become an electrician if you do not have knowledge of important laws and safety standards).

What if I changed my mind?
You always have the option of changing your mind. Many people choose to change their career paths after working for some years or choose to further their studies to take on more responsibility (a plumber might choose to do a business management course to help him become a manager and eventually owning his own business, for example). Keep in mind that you might have to go back to college or university and this process will take time and money.

Eduloan has a solution for full-time and part-time students and even offer you the opportunity to deduct your fixed monthly repayments from your salary. For more information and to speak to one of our Eduloan consultants, visit our website (www.eduloan.co.za), 
like our page on Facebook (www.facebook.com/EduloanSA) and follow us on Twitter (@EduloanSA).

Here are four tips for making study or career decisions
·         Identify career opportunities that suit your interests
·         Evaluate your skills and strengths
·         Research the prerequisites of your chosen career (do you need science or biology or do you need a certain qualification to make sure that you have the knowledge to practice in your field?)
·         Constantly develop skills and experience

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