A career plan is an outline that identifies what an individual is good at and involves knowing how the individual’s skills, interests, and values translate into possible careers or jobs. Furthermore, a career plan includes matching people’s career goals to their educational and financial needs, making excellent personal decisions, and finding methods of meeting individuals’ financial and educational requirements on their schedule (Chetana & Mohapatra, 2017). A career plan highlights the essence of understanding how people’s cultural contexts influence their worldviews (Stoeber et al., 2016). Every person has a personal worldview composing their beliefs, opinions, values, and attitudes regarding how items interact in the world. A person’s cultural context influences their career planning process and father entails such factors as their life experiences and cultural heritage. The paper will analyze the strategies that would be used to support a student’s life work plan by examining a case study through the Hill and O’Brien (1999) Helping Skills Model.
Lisa is a 16-year old Hispanic female who for most of her life lived in the village and struggled to speak English. In search of a better life and educational facilities, her parents decided to migrate to the United States. Here, her parents found life challenging and they could barely secure a decent job. As a result, they had to move into a poor neighborhood where they could afford rent and save enough to pay Lisa’s school fees. The neighborhood Lisa lived in was very dangerous and she had to witness different people with negative attitude towards life. Most people around her age were out on the street and could not afford money to pay for school. They, therefore, engaged in juvenile delinquency and drug abuse, which were the kind of behaviors associated with the neighborhood. Lisa’s parents were afraid that one day she could join such groups and stop going to school.
In school, Lisa found it very difficult to associate with other students. Her dream was to pursue a career in finance and become a financial analyst in the future. One of the challenges she had was discrimination because the school she attended had more white children. Usually, Lisa found herself alone with no one associating with her. Additionally, even though she could understand the English language, she found it difficult to communicate with other children. As a result, most of her peers laughed at her Mexican accent and frequently ridiculed her. All these factors made the school environment a hostile place for Lisa. She hated the school and often told her parents that she needed to change schools. Even though she explained her situation, her parents explained that the school was the best one around the area, which they could afford. However, the hostile school environment did not favor her in terms of education because she could not perform as expected. She was depressed and was always in trouble for fighting with other students who taunted her.
Stage 1: Exploration
In Lisa’s case, the exploration involves determining how to deal with her school situation to pursue her studies and get a good grade that would qualify her to enroll in college. Furthermore, this stage involves finding solutions to an individual’s problems with their surroundings and how to manage their depression issues to reduce the incidences that may jeopardize their career paths (Atli, 2016). To ensure that Lisa attains her goal in pursuing a career in finance, the counselor will utilize Parsons’ trait and factor theory. The theory states that an ideal career matches the personal values, personality, and skills of an individual (Zafar et al., 2021). The theory also emphasizes the importance of matching these traits with the school and work environment and the salary for the individual.
In this case, the exploration stage involves establishing a link between Lisa’s performances in school and the discriminations she encounters. Additionally, this stage involves discovering the relationship between the parents and Lisa. These are important because they will help reduce the anxiety and depression that are affecting Lisa. Therefore, the counselor will be able to address the problem effectively. Additionally, the process is important in encouraging Lisa to understand her values, personality, and skills before deciding to pursue her opportunities. The stage is essential in encouraging Lisa to discover or gain self-confidence and consider other careers to ensure that she makes the right career choice. In this case, Lisa would be encouraged to talk about what she likes and dislikes.
Stage 2: Insight
The insight stage is important for the individual because it is the point at which the career counselor identifies the strengths of the person. To ensure that this takes place, numerous steps are supposed to be followed. Identification of Lisa’s strengths will help guide her towards the right career path. A career that matches her skills, values, and personality thereby avoiding circumstances where she might feel anxious or depressed because of encountering challenges. According to research, one of the methods of ensuring that an individual chooses the right career is by conducting skills and scorecard sort to aid the person to comprehend what is essential to them and the type of skill they utilize more easily (Hariko & Anggriana, 2019). In the case of Lisa, she mostly enjoys mathematical calculations. Furthermore, one of her skills is her sense of keenness and an exceptional sense of attention to detail. All these are essential in the field of finance since it requires an individual with such skillsets.
Since Lisa is going through a tough time in school and is mostly frustrated by her peers, it is important to ensure that the teacher knows that she is experiencing discrimination. To ensure that the teachers are notified of these incidences, the parents can be involved. The counselor should encourage Lisa to tell her parents about her school experiences. If possible, her parents can seek the attention of her teachers and inform them of what their daughter is going through. By letting Lisa’s instructors know that she is being discriminated against, they would ensure that they develop measures that create an inclusive environment. Students would be taught how to associate with people from different cultures. Research states that students in an inclusive environment perform better than those who learn in an environment that is not inclusive (Abkhezr & McMahon, 2017). Thus, ensuring that Lisa can associate with her peers in the same manner as everyone else, the result will be an improved performance geared towards attaining her career goals.
Stage 3: Action
Since one of the major issues that Lisa has is concerned with her accent and difficulty in speaking the English language, the counselor can encourage her to enroll in English as second language classes. By doing so she improves her ability to speak the language and this will help her communicate effectively with other students. Additionally, this will improve her confidences, which will reflect positively on her results in school. Additionally, because other students provoke her and cause her to engage in fights, it means that she may have anger issues. To avoid such incidences, she can train herself to understand other students. By doing so, she will gain more insight into these student’s backgrounds. As a result, she would be able to control her environment without engaging in fights that may cost Lisa her education. She can attempt to associate with teachers who will help her improve her grades thereby ensuring she would achieve her overall goals.
Career plans are an essential part of an individual and comprise an individual’s values, skills, and interests. To ensure that these are followed, a career counselor can follow a distinct path that enlightens their client or student. In this case, the student was from a different cultural background and was trying to study to become a financial analyst. However, she was in a new environment where her culture was among the minority population. Through Parson’s trait and factor theory, the career plan explored the challenges the student faced. The second stage involved developing insight and finding the individual’s strength. Finally, through acknowledging these challenges, the student was encouraged to take action, which involves enrolling in English classes to improve her language and associating with her teachers.
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Hariko, R., & Anggriana, T. M. (2019). Reviewing the role of families in student career planning. Konselor, 8(1), 6. Web.
Stoeber, J., Mutinelli, S., & Corr, P. J. (2016). Perfectionism in students and positive career planning attitudes. Personality and Individual Differences, 97, 256-259. Web.
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