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Career Planning

Updated on: Apr 22, 2013

Welcome to the guided tour for secondary school students. On this tour, you will be able to find out more about planning for your future.

What do you want to be?

With all career possibilities available, how do you make a decision? Once you know what career path you want to follow, how do you get there?

One way to answer questions about your future career is to develop a career plan. A career plan outlines the steps you need to take to reach your career goal.

Generally, a career goal is based on your skills and interests, career possibilities and job trends.

Once you have chosen a career, think strategically about the steps to accomplish your goal. Understanding and accomplishing your career goal will be a lot easier if you create a career plan.
   
'The early bird catches the worm', goes the famous adage. This might be interpreted to mean that in order to achieve success one needs to possess qualities like punctuality, diligence, hard work etc. One also needs to plan ahead, especially in today's fast-paced and highly competitive world.

A career plan determines your skills and interests, what career best suits your talents, and what skills and training you need for your chosen career.

What is required?

It is common knowledge that for carving out a reasonably good career in any sphere, a good deal of planning is required. The vital issues are: a student's aptitude and abilities, his/her favourite subjects, class wise/ subject wise performance, institutions offering relevant courses, the job prospects in a particular field, growth of career prospects with passage of time, global positioning of a particular field and so forth.
   

Where does a secondary class student begin?

A student must ascertain his strong points, a few subjects he is good at. For instance if he/she is strong in English and social sciences, he must make sincere attempts to improve his scores in science subjects including mathematics. To do so, he/she is required to join tutorials/ private tuitions where guidance can be had from truly knowledgeable and professional people.
To improve your marks in a particular subject, try to procure the notes prepared by one or two brilliant students of senior classes. You can seek help from your subject teachers, your friends, your siblings and their friends, neighbours' children studying in the same class but in another school and so forth.
   
The student must guard against mercenary and commercial organisations that are imbued with the idea of making quick bucks rather than help students with their career plans. Go for organisations with long standing reputation and beware of fly-by-night operators.


Choice of subjects

once you know your strong and weak points, your interest and strength; its time to make an informed decision based on an assessment of oneself, one's skills and aptitudes and the opportunities that choice offers. It is very important what is your career goal and path for the career goal.

Do not adopt a single track attitude. Instead explore possibilities.
   
For instance if you are keen on taking up biology, don't think of only medicine. Instead, try to gather information on the allied fields e.g.
? biomedical and biotechnological sciences,
? veterinary science,
? marine biology,
? primatology,
? genetics,
? horticulture,
? agriculture,
? dairy science,
? poultry, sericulture,
? bee-keeping    

Good Marks Tips

Science subjects require make ample use of diagrams and drawings in their final exam papers also, to demonstrate their skills. In order to secure higher marks by means of diagrams, you need to practice a lot during the entire academic year so that the images attain a certain level of perfection.

Allied fields in Engineering
In case you are interested in taking
up engineering, you must understand that there are other options besides electronic or software engineering. Instead, why not go for

? Leather Technology,
? Mechanical Engineering CAD & CAM
? Chemical Engineering,
? Mining and Petroleum
? Ceramic Technology
? Rubber Technology


In case you are planning to take up humanities at college, then you must consider the possibilities that exist e.g.,
? Archeologist
? Social Service
? Public relations,
? Front office manager,
? Secretary,
? Newscaster,
? Anchor,
? Radio jockey,
? Video jockey    

Tip

Enhance and sharpen your language skills (including English), communication skills and general knowledge. Begin early so that when you pass out of high school, you have a few weapons in your arsenal.


If you have a penchant for music, fine arts, dramatics, and dream of taking them up as full-time professions, you must devote sufficient time to them, after your academics; must have regular riyaaz/practice. You must gather knowledge about the maestros and their notable contributions. Fine arts and performing arts do not always work up to formal university degrees. You can take up intensive training in private institutions and schools devoted to these disciplines.

Languages offer bright career prospects
Even if you do not have the knack for them, work hard to secure high marks in English and Hindi and/or Sanskrit, so that your overall scoring rate improves and you become more eligible for competitive/ public exams.

In case you wish to take up a career in languages, be it as a translator/ interpreter or an instructor, you must begin early. During your vacations or even during the rest of the year you could enroll yourself in language institutes like Alliance Fran?aise, Max Mueller Bhawan, Japanese, Italian and Portuguese Cultural Centres which teach their native languages respectively. These centers are located in the metros and other major cities around India. In case you do not have access to these institutions; you could learn languages through the linguaphone (audio) courses. As yet another alternative, most cities and towns have YWCA and YMCA centers which also conduct language courses.

In a similar fashion explore avenues in chemistry, physics, mathematics, geography, economics etc. For information on more career choices visit our other section:

Career options
Top 10 Careers

It might be a good idea to commence some library work on each subject. If you are eager to do well in your exams, you need to step beyond the prescribed textbooks or learning by rote. Start with your school library. Next you could get yourself enrolled in some public library or the other.
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