College and Career Readiness is a buzzword that has many meanings. The meanings vary from a student’s perspective, to the college they will attend, parents, teachers, and counselors currently in their life. Is it research and siting sources prior to college? Is it being able to find your class on time? Follow the semester syllabus? Could it be running out of gas and figuring it out.? I once ran out of gas and had a piece of cardboard in my car that I created a funnel, walked to the nearest gas station, filled up (thank goodness I had my emergency $5.00), and Uber wasn’t around. Some folks think college and career readiness is having a resume, graduating and earning $80,000 right off, with major benefits, and a corner office. Students today have extremely unrealistic expectations, and will change college majors 5-7 times, careers 7-8 times between ages 21 and 29. The average college completion rate at public universities is 50% because they truly don’t know what they want to do.
Employers want graduates who are on time, team players, and trainable for specific tasks. They often cannot think creatively/critically, or follow directions; employers are stating they are not ready. I just attended a forum at Troy High School with educators and business professionals who also reinforced graduates are lacking soft skills. I’m not saying I have the answers for every scenario, but as a counselor and college consultant my students will stay at the same college, understand the impact and choice of major, the job outlooks and have a clear understanding of who they are and where they want to be. Remember they are only 16, 17 and 18 years old, and will go through lots of challenges, choices, and fears. As your student’s coach, advisor, counselor and cheerleader I will ask questions, encourage introspection, discuss topics, and repeat questions; these actions will help me understand who they are and where they want to be. Just like a car that needs refueling, our kids need the energy, resources and encouragement to take healthy risks, and be challenged. Read More.