Career Counseling for High School Students and Role of EdTech Companies
Isn’t it common to see confused teenagers? I didn’t even know what course to pursue after high school graduation; did you?
High school is a rollercoaster ride. Teenagers are at their peak of hormonal changes and on the cusp of career transformation.
The students may admit it or not, but they do need help.
It can be a real task for students to understand their interests and go through the college selection and admission process. There will be rejections and application errors, so students should receive proper guidance for subject selection and admissions.
Most students plan on going to college, but sometimes they either drop the idea or drop out before graduation because of high tuition fee or other reasons. In a study by the Pew Research Center, about 44% of women gave unaffordability as their reason for not attending college, while only 39% of men said the same. But the second most common reason for men and women was to work to help their families.
Some students also ditch a regular college education because they want to pursue their passion.
Importance of Higher Education
There are two schools of thought. One says that a college degree is important if you seek financial betterment. To corroborate, a 2021 study said that in 2021, a bachelor’s degree holder earned a median wage of $52,000 annually. On the other hand, a student with only a high school diploma earned a median wage of $30,000 annually.
The other school of thought mentions that a college degree does not define an individual’s career. Of course, there are exceptions, but it is also true that everyone has their own journeys.
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Unfortunately, COVID has widened the college employment gaps among graduates and undergraduates. A study conducted in December 2021 tells us that the unemployment rate for college graduates is 1.9% ( aged 25 years or older), and for high school graduates is 3.7%.
Why is Counseling Necessary in High School?
We all know that students are often confused about selecting their majors in college. We have all been there.
Counseling is a guidance program that helps students to channel their energies in the right direction. For example, in high school, counselors help students to:
- Unveil their interests and follow the right career path.
- Assist students in determining which courses will benefit them in a specific career field.
- Educate them about colleges as per their tuition fees.
- Help them through the college admissions process.
But this is just what is in the job description. Many good counselors go to lengths to help students get into college. And this is where our answer lies.
Students often feel they are not well guided to help them decide on their career path. They are mostly confused about what subjects to study and how that would help them achieve a desirable career path.
They can often make mistakes. As a result, they may either change their majors or drop out of college altogether. However, both these options are a significant waste of time and money.
Effective and timely counseling can help students discover their interests, understand their career paths, and choose relevant courses and colleges as per their feasibility.
Why Counseling When the Internet is There?
No doubt the internet holds immense information, but we cannot speak to it about our doubts. It just delivers and does not help us discover. Counselors are trained professionals who know about careers and how to deal with confused students.
We spoke to some college students through social media, and they feel that career counseling in high school would have helped them select their majors in college. However, some also said they decided to study in college because they had nothing else to do.
We found it to be concerning. Students choosing to study college just because they have nothing else to do can lead them to choose the wrong subjects, which might increase the dropout rates. This can cost them their time and money too.
Sessions with a career counselor can start by telling students about the importance of attending a college and what process can be followed for applications to different colleges.
Role of EdTech Companies in Counseling Students
Career choice and subject selection are big tasks for high school students. This is where EdTech companies can play a part. EdTech companies can act as a one-stop shop with a combined cluster of resources to help students guide their careers.
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EdTech companies can be helpful in this area since the school counselors are overwhelmed with almost 400 students per counselor. Unfortunately, this can prevent students from receiving personalized guidance sessions.
Some of the many companies that offer college counseling services include:
- College Essay Guy provides a wide range of services for students, parents, and counselors. Writing a college essay is one of the significant challenges to admissions, and this website helps students with the entire process.
- College Vine was founded in 2013 and has offices in the United States and the United Kingdom.It boasts a 70% acceptance rate of students into the Ivy League and top schools.
- Empowerly was founded in 2018 and boasts of a 94% success rate of college admissions for students in the top 50 schools.
- Niche is a US-based online platform that helps students find the right school and colleges for them. It gives school/college rankings, reviews of parents and students that can help others to take decisions.
- Common App as an online counseling platform is old and is a non-profit initiative. It bridges the gap between college applicants and institutions to help students simplify the college admission process.