What Do You Like? Career Exploration for Young People

Each child has a unique design of gifts and interests which God has given him or her intentionally: "For [you] are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works which God has prepared in advance for you to do" (Eph. 2:10). You can make a tremendous difference for the children in your life by helping them understand their God-given design and the types of careers that would utilize their gifts and abilities.

What Do You Like?is a new resource to help young people in grades 4-8 begin seeing how their interests may match up with different types of jobs. The website was developed by the Bureau of Labor Statistics to provide "introductory career information for younger students. Most of the material on the site has been adapted from the Bureau's Occupational Outlook Handbook-a career guidance publication for adults and upper-level high school students that describes the job duties, working conditions, training requirements, earnings levels, and employment prospects of hundreds of occupations."

The kids' website provides a quick introduction to a sampling of careers, providing general information to help students understand the basics of that occupation. "For example, the most common way of preparing for an occupation is described, while other, less common, methods of entry might be mentioned only briefly or not at all. In the same way, the earnings figures given are representative and might not illustrate the variety of earnings found in an occupation." Students can find more detailed information and a wider range of career options in the Occupational Outlook Handbook.

Career Planning from Elementary to College Years

The elementary and middle school years are a great time to help a child explore and identify types of interests he or she has, and to begin seeing how those interests relate to career paths. At age 16 or older, professional career testing can be very helpful in clarifying the specifics of the student's interests, skills, personality type and values. When a student has an in-depth, multi-faceted understanding of his or her design, identifying prospective career options (and a college major) becomes much easier.

Would you your son or daughter (or another student in your life) benefit from professional career testing? If so, we invite you to learn more about our package, Professional Career Testing for High School/College Students. You can give someone the gift of getting "on track" with God's purpose early in his or her life!

Kevin Brennfleck and Kay Marie Brennfleck are the authors of Live Your Calling: A Practical Guide to Finding and Fulfilling Your Mission in Life. As National Certified Career Counselors and Life Calling Coaches, they are recognized experts in helping people identify their giftedness and find their purpose in life. If you are interested in career coaching and testing to discover work that fits your God-given design; or would like assistance with writing a powerful resume, interviewing effectively, finding job openings, or other aspects of a successful job search, you can schedule a free consultation session at www.ChristianCareerCenter.com.