Career Preparation (High)

Career Preparation includes thinking about your interests, values, skills and preferences and exploring the career and education/training options available to you.


As it applies to School Counselors, this last stage of Career Development is known as Career Preparation. Career Preparation includes thinking about your interests, values, skills and preferences and exploring the career and education/training options available to you. At this stage, high school students begin to prepare for their academic and work life post graduation.  Career Preparation involves the creation of a career plan, with a specific career choice (or broader career pathway or career cluster choice) and includes identifying, creating and embarking on a high school graduation plan with this end goal in mind. Ideally, this career plan should stretch beyond the high school years and include specific programs of study, postsecondary education options and a plan to finance the education or training program of choice.  Career Preparation most typical begins in high school, but may begin later.


  • Career preparation must include the knowledge of what one must do in order to prepare for a career, such as which high school college and career pathway plan to follow and what type of education/training is needed for career goals.
  • Career preparation is not only about applying knowledge about oneself to making potential career choices, but it is about actively engaging in an education and training plan that will help prepare you for career goals.
  • Career development at this stage should focus on helping students make informed decisions regarding their educational/career plans at the post-secondary level. 
  • Starting to plan for a career in high school may be too late, as ideally, the high school education plan will take career interests and goals into account.
  • Job Experience, Job Shadowing, Internships and/or Apprenticeship opportunities are all activities that may be helpful in Career Preparation.
  • Many employers and state agencies are now focusing on “Employability Skills” (“Soft Skills”) as a necessary component in career preparation.
  • Career preparation goes beyond the classroom and academics.
  • Outside of School Counseling, Career Preparation may be seen to include/be described as scores on End of Course Assessments (ECA’s), Accuplacer scores, high school diploma and credits, etc.


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  • College & Career Resources shared at the 2022 INACAC Conference, February 28, 2022 – March 1, 2022
  • The Indiana Office of CTE and the Governor’s Workforce Cabinet released an online version of a new Indiana CTE Career Guide
  • I was asked to provide more information about the career panels that we have here at Edgewood High School. The Bloomington Chamber of Commerce has a program called the Success School which provides career-related programming for schools including Reality Store (junior high), employment fairs, etc. They maintain a database of individuals associated with the Chamber that they can contact to request volunteers for these activities. At the beginning of the school year I provide them with dates (we typically have one panel per month) and the career fields we want to focus on, and they provide the guest speakers. We have students sign up for the panels in advance. Any student in grades 9-12 can sign up. Some teachers choose to offer extra credit for attendance if the panel relates to their subject area. The panels meet for 45 minutes on Monday mornings. We have Homeroom from 7:30-8:00, so they do not miss much class time. (From Counselor Talk, March 2020)


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