As career options continue to increase exponentially, increasing numbers of people are looking at what may be called ‘unconventional careers’ in the Indian context. As is well known, from small towns to the country’s largest metropolis of Mumbai, most parents want their children to be either engineers or doctors. In the northern part of India, people may hanker for civil services or other government jobs.
Career Counseling should ideally start right after 10th standard or 12th standard (intermediate). This is the time when most people are unsure and apprehensive as to which career they should choose. Of course, many parents do intervene and help a lot. That, however, is not sufficient, as parents cannot be as dispassionate as career counselors. They may be subject to the influence of the careers of their peers’ children, their own likes or prejudices or some other factors. Expert career counselors, on the other hand, handheld students to help them zero in on their interests.
There, however, seems to be a steady but a slow paradigm shift as few parents now do not mind their children becoming journalists, stockbrokers, entrepreneurs, paramedics and so on. In fact, most Western countries offer jobs in these so-called ‘unconventional professions’. Moreover, skills take precedence over educational qualifications there. This attitudinal shift has influenced youngsters also to look for careers, which were shunned by Indians not too long ago. After all, people should be working in careers which give them satisfaction. Another fallout of this has been that lot of people are changing their career paths midway.
It is common for most middle-class people to see their children going abroad for higher education. Here, Career Counsellors help students to narrow down on educational institutions, which will depend on the marks they scored in their graduation, chances of obtaining their scholarship, the destination of their choice and the financial resources they have at their disposal.
In this landscape, quite a few professional career guidance centres have sprung up to cater to help youngsters realise where their strengths lie. Many of them take the aid of psychometric tests to understand what may be the aptitude of a particular person.
They also help students in filling up admission forms, asking them to get all the required documentation ready and in other minor ways.
Finally, educational institutions abroad want to know why a student has chosen their particular college/university. The student has then to sit and write a Statement of Purpose (SOP) detailing his/her intentions. Since this is the toughest part, it is better to avail the help of Career Advisors who know what these institutions want.
If you are in Mumbai and you seeking help for your career, walk into Y-Axis offices located in Andheri, Vashi, Bandra and Thane.