Who to talk to when you don’t know what to do after high school

Young student talks to her career counsellor

Leaving school can feel pretty overwhelming. One minute you’ve had all of your decisions made for you and your class schedule locked in, but the minute you leave school, all of the planning and decision making fall back on you!

If this is where you’re at right now, looking for informative articles like “Who to talk to when you don’t know what to do after high school” is a great first step. Let’s look at a couple of the most reliable information sources for soon to be school leavers.

Friends and family

One way to decide on a suitable career path is by talking to your friends and family about any of your initial thoughts, life goals, career concerns, really anything that’s taking up space in your mind. 

They’ve all been in your shoes before, and as your close circle will be more than happy to share their stories and what they did after high school. You’ll probably find most people changed their minds about their career a few times, or took quite some time to figure out what they wanted to do. 

As some of the closest relationships you have, your friends and family can also help shed light on the skills you excel at. Sometimes it’s hard to identify your own strengths, and it can be really helpful to discuss your thoughts with others. 

Ask your family and friends, “what do I do well?” or “What can you see me doing in 5 years time?”

They’ll be able to answer much faster than you can probably do yourself. 

In some cases, your family can have the connections necessary to help you secure a job or gain experience in a field that you’re interested in. For example, if you wish to work with children, it might be that your aunt’s friend runs a nursery so they can connect with you.

So don’t hesitate to reach out to those closest to you – they’ll likely be more than happy to help!

Career counsellor/mentor

Talking to your teachers or even a career counsellor/mentor can give you some great advice on what to do next.

They typically have a lot of experience in guiding people just like you to decide on their future. Plus, it’s their job.

Simply starting the conversation will help boost your confidence and give you some reassurance that you’re making the right decision.

What happens when you talk to a career counsellor/mentor?

When you meet with a career counsellor or mentor, they will usually do a few things to help you feel more decided about what you want to do after leaving school. 

They will usually start by asking you about your interests and skills, and then try to match you up with careers that would suit you. They will also help you create a plan for your future, including steps that you can take to reach your goals.

For example, if you decide that you want to chase a career working in construction a career counsellor can help by pointing you in the right direction for starting your training. They can also help you figure out what other steps you need to take, such as getting experience in the field of networking with people who work in that industry.

Attend a careers expo

Attending a careers expo is a great way to get some exposure to things you could be doing after high school.  At Careers Event, our events help students just like you explore a wide range of academic and career opportunities to discover a future that excites you!

Check out our upcoming Tertiary Studies & Careers Expos and head to our website to find more helpful resources for high school students.