Did you know that the number of youth that reported a positive view of their future in a 2008 survey of 2,100 Mission high school youth was 73 per cent? What happens when expectations and reality don’t mix?
Life after high school can be a tumultuous time. The prospect of transition can lead to self-doubt and anxiety. After high school, the structure of school days disappears and for students without the academic gifts, financial gifts, motivation or support structure to attend university, they can feel as if they have been left behind. Friends move away, parental expectations may become tense and the reality of trying to make it on your own can seem daunting.
Did you know that skills in planning and decision making were reported at only 25 per cent in this same survey?
Planning ahead, organization and meeting deadlines are critical skills for adult life. University is a time not just for academic growth and learning but also about leaving the nest, becoming more independent, and learning about yourself and the wider world around you.
What can you do to support someone you know making this transition?
Consider individual strengths, interests, favoured learning environment, comfort level in a smaller school rather than a larger school, comfort level in remaining close to home or moving far away, athletic and extracurricular options. Talk with people you may know that have been through various post-secondary options including trade programs and less conventional career paths.
Most universities have a pool of recent alumni to talk with in each program area. If possible, a pre-visit and/or student orientation can be a good idea to get a feel for the environment. As financing post-secondary education can bring its own set of challenges, explore community scholarships, post-secondary scholarships, grants, work-study programs, co-op options and low interest student loans.
What if your plans for your high school graduate and theirs don’t mesh?
The reality is career paths are experiencing more changes and shifts today than ever before.
While transitions signify positive life events for some of us, they can also be triggers of past negative life events such as a parental separation and forced move away from friends and stability, a move to a new country, etc. If motivation and decision making become problematic, counselling can offer support for your young adult in making these life changes.
Do you know a young person or adult who is struggling to move forward in their lives? Join Tamara Throssell of Changing Point Coaching to learn about resources, supportive conversations and strategies to help your loved one move forward in a compassionate and supportive way.
The event happens June 27 from 7 to 8 p.m. at the Mission Leisure Centre. Please RSVP to Kirsten Hargreaves, firstname.lastname@example.org, or 604-820-3752.
40 Assets: Helping Children and Youth Thrive is a volunteer-based working group in Mission within the District of Mission’s social development program. The Did You Know article series focuses in on results from the 40 Developmental Assets Survey completed in 2008 by 2,100 Mission high school youth.