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Allow your student to make the decision

Allow your student to make the decision

Even though it is helpful to ask occasionally about career plans, too much prodding can backfire.

Myth: A student must major in something “practical” or marketable. Truth:Students should follow their own interests and passions.

Myth: Picking your major means picking the career you will have forever.

Truth: That’s not true anymore. “Major” does not necessarily mean “career”, and it is not unusual for a student to change majors. Many students change majors after gaining more information about specific fields of study and career fields of interest. Many students end up doing something very different than originally planned, so don’t freak out when they come up with an outrageous or impractical career idea. Chances are plans will develop and change. It’s okay to change majors—and careers.

It’s okay to make suggestions about majors and career fields, but let your student be the ultimate judge of what’s best.

Career development can be stressful. Maybe this is the first really big decision that your son or daughter has had to make. Be patient, sympathetic and understanding, even if you don’t agree with your child’s decisions.

Next: Emphasize the importance of internships

A Parents’ Guide to Career Development
By Thomas J. Denham
Reprinted from JobWeb (www.jobweb.com) with permission of the
National Association of Colleges and Employers, copyright holder.