As if the Senior Year isn’t hard enough for our Young People, this year’s cohort have the uncertainties’ generated by COVID19 to deal with as well.
Earlier in the year, when COVID started to infiltrate Australia, our Young People had so many unanswerable questions around final exams, graduation and then Uni or employment. A lot of these uncertainties still exist for them today.
There is the uncertainty for our students aspiring University degrees and what opportunities may look like. The impact COVID has had on the Australian Universities with the border closures, impacting on International Students and the financial strength they bring to the economy, questions around the overall impact for our local kids; fees they may be hit with and the allocated placements.
Consider the uncertainty for the students hoping to leave school and enter the workforce to gain employment in their chosen field. The ABS Labour Force documented in June that unemployment rate was currently sitting at 7.4%, higher than June 2019 (as you would expect) with close to a million people in Australia unemployed (992,300 people).
During my period of Stand Down, I commenced a Youth Coaching Business; Intent by Design because I see the effect uncertainty has on Young People and the stress it causes to their well-being. I’ve been journeying with a beautiful young person who came home from school one afternoon, stressing about her career, uni and just a bit bamboozled where to start and what to do. Her mum made contact with me, and her journey to clarity commenced. Due to confidentiality, I won't share her real name, so lets call her Anna.
By the fourth session Anna knew what she wanted to do, which degrees and at which universities she was going to apply. Anna was already feeling empowered. In this fourth session, we also did an exercise to explore all the different employment possibilities she could have with the degrees she had chosen. Anna shared her surprise in that she had no idea of the scope of possibilities that would be accessible to her. We also explored differences in expected salaries, in line with her future hopes and dreams, like travel.
Through putting a little bit of framework and strategy to the approach, Anna gained massive clarity and even greater excitement and enthusiasm for her future. As she was gaining confidence and clarity she was on a roll, so when it came time to write a letter to herself from her future, WOW, this was powerful! At first I could see, Anna was a little unsure about sharing it with me, so I shared my story when I did the exercise and my own thoughts and apprehensions in sharing it with others, in fear of being laughed at or told it’s ridiculous. So she took a breath, and began to read it to me. The smile and excitement that came across her face was priceless! Exactly the reason why I do what I do! Beautiful for me to witness, POWERFUL for her to have not only written it, but to have spoken it out loud and shared it with another.
One of the sessions I had asked Anna if she talks about Uni and careers with her friends. She replied that she doesn’t anymore because they are all stressed out about it and she likes the place she is in now and doesn't want to take on that 'stress' energy. Anna has expressed feeling more confident in the new certainty and clarity she has now gained. She even has a backup plan. If she doesn’t get into the course she wants, she knows what the plan will be and is good with this.
Sadly it’s not the norm for Young People to go to a Youth Career Coach and their experience of any career guidance is very quick and impersonal. The School Guidance Counselors often have a ridiculous work load, with not enough hours in the day and don't have the time to journey deeply with the students. As a result, the students may be given some pamphlets on different degrees and unis and are pretty much sent away.
Our Young People don’t need to be told what to do, but they sure need someone to journey with them, listening and empowering them to discover what is truly in their heart, what their dream is and then to have some structure and accountability in discovering the path to make it happen.
I absolutely love what I do and am passionate about empowering people to discover who they really are, why they exist and how they add value to the world. Life is too short for it to be wasted and we need our Young People to rise up straight away as they are our future right now.
Is your young one in their Senior Year and appearing to be struggling with Uni choices?
Do you have a young one in Year 10 or 11, feeling pressured about subject choices aligning with their future career and have no idea what they want to do? (BTW this is normal. A very confusing time, with a lot going on for them)
I would love to help out and see that stress decrease!
Certainly if you have any questions that I could possibly assist with, please don’t hesitate to contact us