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The Student News Site of Gretna East High School

The Wingspan

The Student News Site of Gretna East High School

The Wingspan

Students call for real guidance in “Career Week” over redundant “tests”

Students+call+for+real+guidance+in+%E2%80%9CCareer+Week%E2%80%9D+over+redundant+%E2%80%9Ctests%E2%80%9D
Brayden Hansen

Deciding your future as a teenager can be a very stressful experience. For sophomores, it is a requirement for students to spend a week in their social studies class discussing their futures in the workforce. While the name of the week, “career week” would imply that we would explore different careers, and pathways to obtain said careers, the so-called “career week” is really just taking personality tests for multiple days without actual career counseling.

Students spend five days discussing future careers and taking tests to help them determine their interests. The counselors assist students throughout their class’s designated week and conduct small group projects that feel unnecessary. The most disappointing part of the week is the repetitive feeling, as we use the same personality and career tests from our ninth-grade health class which makes the week feel unnecessary and redundant. 

Trying to find what we are interested in by taking personality tests doesn’t help us figure out our futures as much as those who decided on it might have hoped. With each personality type comes a set of certain jobs you could be suited for based on the statistics you get, but it’s possible that students receive jobs outside of what they really want to do.

Personality tests can help us discover more about ourselves, but at the same time, there is only so much someone can learn about themself from a website. During this week, we take the 16Personalities and Nebraska Career Connections tests. These tests are intended for use to learn more about certain personality traits and types. The Nebraska Career Connections website gives a handful of jobs that could suit the test taker, but often students feel like their given jobs don’t match who they are or what they want to do.

After students take the personality tests, they participate in small group projects closer to the end of the week, and students work together to solve a hypothetical “real-world” problem given to them. This idea is good in theory because it allows us to work with diverse personalities in our class, but at the same time, we have worked together all year. We already know our peers, so this exercise doesn’t stimulate a new work environment and, therefore, poses another waste of time. 

Career week should focus more on building our knowledge of our interests and possible career options. We could discuss wages, classes and internships that can help get you there, or even simulate their suggested careers in different project formats. The counselors could try having students brainstorm to figure out what they want to do in the future or where they want to go to college. Internships and career ideas could be discussed as a whole group. Turn this week into a “how-to” week where we discuss how to interview and network. We can learn to plan for certain careers and build resumes. Adding on to this, counselors could have representatives from different careers visit students during the week to discuss different paths in their career fields.

We should have options rather than an online test telling them what we’re fit for. Students should spend time with their counselors discussing what their plans or interests are and then go from there. Have them try new things, figure out what they want, and be patient and understanding.

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About the Contributors
Reese Beery, Reporter
Reese Beery is a sophomore in her first year on the journalism staff. She serves as a staff reporter. She enjoys many aspects of journalism including sports writing and photography. From capturing memories with a camera to halftime football reports, she gives it her all. She joined the journalism program because of her lifelong passion for writing and creativity. If she’s not working you can find her spending time with family, friends or attending sporting events, even if it’s just her little brother’s baseball games.
Brayden Hansen, Editor
Brayden Hansen is a sophomore at GEHS and is in his first year in journalism with the Wingspan. He serves as the op/ed editor. Outside of school, his passions are reading, spending time with friends, listening to music and gaming. He was born in Kansas City, Kansas, but moved to Nebraska at a young age. Brayden’s favorite type of story to write is opinions due to its impact and it just being fun.
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Comments (3)

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  • S

    ShoMar 21, 2024 at 1:16 pm

    We appreciate your thoughts and opinions on this matter, because the topic of “Career Counseling” is a big beast to tackle, even on a student-by-student basis.

    I really enjoy the idea regarding brainstorming to generate interview/networking tips, especially with a creative edge to serve all students with our current caseload (approx 350/counselor). Our professional organization (ASCA) recommends 250:1 in order to address all needs of students effectively. Currently our career unit is four days long. In years past it has been five.

    With knowing your peers and work environment, I agree it can be perceived as a waste of time. In the classes I observed/led (6), various conversations were having a struggle to get going; numerous times I visited groups to initiate ideas (outside of those recommended on the situation cards).

    One’s perspective is needed to be taken into account when it comes to navigating careers. That being said, I invited all students to visit/email/suggest ways to make the Career Unit better. Thank you for giving voice to a very important topic in a students’ career. I plan on reaching out to students to better format future presentations.

    Our hope with the 16 Personalities test results was to give an overview of interests, skill sets, and possible pathways. Nebraska Career Connections does give outlooks of wages, interests, education/experience, and salary/outlook to name a few. With a little digging, the profile also gives information in suggested careers or related ones.

    I do know there is only a small slice of time we have to give in presentations, but we do encourage students to dive further (on their own) in research. A lot can change from year to year, moment to moment.

    There are some concerns I would like to voice. The title itself is an attention-grabber, so although I appreciate the word choice, it does paint a picture that we don’t know how to give guidance. I also wondered why there wasn’t an interview to either of us discussing the overall scope of a students’ visits with their Counselor/Counseling Department and how we can help in the Post-Secondary realm.

    Junior Conferences addressing where they plan on going and what they would like to do, Senior Presentations addressing the follow-through of said plan, and scheduling wellchecks (students can initiate this if there are any questions at all) are only a small part of what we strive to do year to year.

    With any goal(s) of Personal/Social, Academic, and Post-Secondary/Career counseling, anyone can make an appointment to discuss those plans. We hope students feel comfortable enough to make an appointment to discuss the above-mentioned goals.

    Reply
  • M

    Madeline CooleyMar 19, 2024 at 10:06 am

    I hope the counselors consider this because it would be much more useful than the current career week.

    Reply
  • M

    Miki KeckMar 18, 2024 at 5:12 pm

    You are correct and your thoughts and suggestions are spot on. I hope they take your editorial opinion piece into consideration and change “career week” so it is something to look forward to instead of being redundant.

    Reply