Career Exploration Paper Tori Turner Liberty University Career Exploration Paper Career Field & Occupation Choice Within society, there are many occupations to explore and chose. The Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) results showed that my personal career strengths fall under the area of teaching and counseling. Currently, as a school counselor for a high school in Duncanville, Texas, a suburb outside of Dallas, I find the results of the assessment to be very accurate. Making the decision to become a counselor is a rewarding and exciting career choice.
In the world of counsling, there are many individuals who place emphasis on not just basic implications, but also on theoretical studies that usually are a part of their professional and personal experiences. As times have change, so have educational curricula. Counselors and educators, their philosophies, and educational standards continue to change; therefore, educators have to take on responsibility and think more about their chosen roles within the educational system and the various means of combining theory and practice.
The general examination of the different roles in counseling, personal career assessments and ideological relationships each play a role in the area of education and counseling. As a result of the choice as having a career as a counselor attaches the decision to continue to research theories and then integrate them into areas of education helps to build a solid foundation, which will in due course will led to the creation of a personalized educational philosophy.
The choice to be a counselor or educator gives an individual a chance to become more connected and familiar with both primary and present-day educational theories. Nature of the Work As a high school counselor works with high school aged youth in the area general education, special needs, and at-risk students to guide them in the right direction for knowing how set personal goals, study skills, career or college plans, be a mentor for others, and to just help them be successful within their personal educational endeavors.
A typical day consist of seeing students during office hours times in the morning, help with lunch duty, and then classroom visitation. During classroom visitation, students have the opportunity to participate in group activity discussions, such as the JUST SAY NO Program, Tell Someone Program, Drug prevention programs, and so forth. Preparation and qualifications Counselors within the Duncanville School District (DISD) are close in range to the salary of an educator’s of about 50,000 a year (Salary. com, 2012, p. 5).
A typical work week consists of 40 to 50 hours a week, but these hours do not include training and workshops. According to the United States Bureau of Labor and Statistics (BLS), a high school counselor has to have an undergraduate education that consists of programs in the area of psychology or another related major. Additional studies could be in the areas of adolescent and childhood psychology, life span development, and educational psychology. Often times, there is an internship or practicum, which helps with their work experience.
At the graduate level, a high school counsel may place more emphasis on assessments that will allow for their licensing. The Council for Accreditation of Counseling and Related Educational Programs helps in the area of accreditation and may be asked to complete research projects as a part of their studies. Many states require licensing for becoming a high school counselor, which varies by state (www. educational-portal. com). Working conditions Depending on the size of the high school’s population there can sometimes be more than one school counselor.
The environment is usually in a school setting and the hours are regular school hours and works the traditional 9 to 10 month school year. Supervision is the responsibility of the principal and the population of students varies from at-risk youth to the general population of students. The clients usually range in age from 14 to 18 and issues can range from drug/substance abuse, bullying, issues with home, pregnancy, and the list goes on. Opportunities and future outlook
The opportunities and future outlook for high school counselors will greatly depend on the size of the school and its district. Currently, in the Duncanville School District, there are very limited spaces for school counselors. On the other hand, other local larger school districts are in need of high school counselors because there are many students who are in need of needing someone to speak to about their life issues and other social problems that they continue to encounter on a daily basis. The increase in student enrollment and the building of new schools is not a negative situation.
It is more so a situation that opens the doors for more individuals who have been certified in the area of counseling. Overall, “employment for educational, vocational, and school counselors is expected to grow by 14 percent, which is faster than the average for all occupations” (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2010-11, p. 1). Economic and non-economic benefits In 2011-2012, the median annual wages of educational, school, and vocational counselors are were from $38,740 to $65,340 with the lowest salary being less than $29,360 (Bureau of Labor Statics, 2010-11, p. ). There are many schools who are trying to eliminate on-site school counselors and high part time visiting counselors to work with students on an as needs basis. States require elementary schools to employ counselors, but not always high schools. On the other hand, there are a lot of high school aged youth in school who are more interested in preventive and crisis counseling, but budget constraints at every school level can cause a stint in the job growth of school counselors.
There are also federal grants and subsidies that can be implemented, if available, to help set off school district budgets. Disadvantages and/or special situations A school counselor, at the high school level does differ from a traditional elementary school counselor especially in the area of responsibilities. Many of the students, who see a high school counselor, usually express higher stress type situations that need immediate attention. Whenever tragedies locally or worldwide, school counselors are placed under pressure to work with all of the students within the school.
High school counselors have to be willing to go the extra mile of stepping outside of the box and researching approaches that are proactive and help to encompass prevention. The disadvantage of being a high school counselor is that sometimes school counselors need outside support and in many instances there is not anyone for them to turn to for advice. Conclusion In general, being a high school counselor can be a rewarding and stressful type of career. It can also be a life line for many students who usually do not have anyone to turn or talk too.
Individuals, who chose to go into the area of counseling, have a natural calling and desire to want to help others and to be a hand of support. There are many students who have lived positive and less stressful lives because they were able to have a counselor guide them in the right direction. Currently, as a high school counselor, I will continue to use O*NET to research information that would help me to be a better counselor for students of all backgrounds and cultures; therefore, it is important to make sure that my personal career goals are focused and open-minded.