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Engaging Parents in Career Conversations. Presenter/s: Venue: Date:. Acknowledgements. The following have contributed to the development of this resource: Gray Poehnell Canadian Career Development Foundation Career Education Association of Victoria Source Materials:

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Engaging Parents in Career Conversations

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  • The following have contributed to the development of this resource:
  • Gray Poehnell
  • Canadian Career Development Foundation
  • Career Education Association of Victoria
  • Source Materials:
  • “Guiding Circles” - R. McCormick, N. Amundson, & G. Poehnell
  • “Hope-Filled Engagement” - G. Poehnell & N. E. Amundson
  • “Lasting Gifts” - Canadian Career Development Foundation and
            • Career Education Association Victoria
  • www.myfuture.edu.au
  • www.education.gov.au
  • www.employment.gov.au


have a conversation
Have a conversation

Step in Step Out:

  • Select one person who stepped in with you and have a conversation about:
    • the experience you have in common
    • what interested you about attending this workshop
workshop aims
Workshop Aims

By the end of this workshop you will be able to:

  • Better support your teenager in their career journey;
  • Have a career conversation with your teenager;
  • Know and understand the High 5 messages
  • Learn about some useful career resources;
  • Understand the influential role you play; and
  • Become a career ally!




Raise parents’ awareness of education and training opportunities.

It raises the value attributed to those opportunities by parents.

Miles Morgan (2012, March)


Parents are the preferred source of career information, advice and guidance for teenagers.

Hibbert, T (2010, September)

On Track

Better careers advice would have encouraged early school leavers to stay at school.

State of Victoria (2008)

Lost Talent

It is important for young people to have a specific occupational career plan and receive comprehensive career development services.

Foundation for Young Australians (2010)


the changing world of work
The Changing World-of-Work

What will work be like for young people in Australia today?

Minimum of 7 careers in a lifetime

Follow your heart

Focus on the journey

Use your networks

Lifelong learning

What was work like for you growing up?

  • Could you expect to stay in the one job?
  • Were you able to choose the job you did?
  • Were you able to change jobs when you wanted to?
  • Were you able to ask for help and advice?
  • Did you have to keep learning new skills?


concerns about the future
Concerns About the Future

What concerns do you have about your teenager’s future?

What concerns does your teenager have about their future?


Source: National Career Development Week


your future how many of you
Your Future: How many of you…

… knew at 16 years of age what you wanted to pursue?

… are doing now what you thought you wanted to do when you were 16?

… made important career decisions based on researching and reading labour market information?

… are where you are now, at least in part, because of a chance encounter or unplanned event?

Source: “Lasting Gifts”

Canadian Career Development



positive uncertainty
Positive Uncertainty

H.B. Gelatt describes ‘positive uncertainty’ as:

  • the ability to recognise and accept that the future is uncertain; and
  • at the same time, be positive about it.

Source: Gelatt & Gelatt


attributes that young people need
Attributes that young people need…





Ambition is the path to success, persistence is the vehicle you arrive in. ~ William Eardley IV

When one door of happiness closes another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us. ~ Helen Keller

It is not in the stars to hold our destiny but in ourselves. ~ William Shakespeare

In order to succeed, your desire for success should be greater than your fear of failure. ~ Bill Cosby


preferred future
Preferred Future

Source: “Lasting Gifts”

Canadian Career Development



how do students learn about careers
How do students learn about careers?
  • Self Development
    • Understand yourself: your interests, skills and values
  • Career Exploration
    • Find out about different types of work and learning
    • Experience different types of work
  • Career Management
    • Learn how to make a Career Action Plan and work towards it



high 5 career development messages
High 5 Career Development Messages

1. Change is Constant

2. Learning is Ongoing

3. Focus on the Journey

4. Follow your Heart

5. Access your Allies


* Developed in 1995 by Canadian career development leaders

Source: Career Industry Council of Australia


change is constant
Change is Constant

Did You Know…?



Source: Karl Fisch


change is constant1
Change is Constant

Labour Market Information on Job Outlook

  • www.joboutlook.gov.au
  • Over 350 occupations with:
    • Overview and Job prospects
    • Statistics: growth, earnings, hours, gender/age, FT/PT
    • Knowledge, skills and abilities
    • Training and Vacancies
  • Career Quiz

Skill Shortages



Source: Job Outlook


learning is ongoing
Learning is Ongoing
  • Where do you learn?
    • Home? School? Play? Events? Other?
  • How do you learn?
    • By: Doing? Reading? Hearing? Singing? Watching?
  • What about informal learning?
  • What is lifelong learning?


learning is ongoing1
Learning is Ongoing

Senior Secondary School Pathways:

Source: VCAA


learning is ongoing2
Learning is Ongoing
  • Vocational Education and Training in Schools (VETiS)
    • Expand opportunities and pathways in senior secondary
    • Vocational focus
    • Contributes towards completion of VCE/VCAL
    • Can combine with a School-Based Apprenticeship or Traineeship


Source: VCAA


learning is ongoing3
Learning is Ongoing
  • School-based Apprenticeships and Traineeships
    • Vocational training that contributes towards a senior secondary qualification
    • Involves work, vocational training and school studies


Source: VCAA


learning is ongoing4
Learning is Ongoing

Source: Job Guide


learning is ongoing5
Learning is Ongoing

Source: Department of Education


learning is ongoing6
Learning is Ongoing
  • Courses and institutions
  • Further education and training entrance requirements
    • VTAC entry
    • Prerequisite studies (e.g. Units 3-4 English studies)
    • Admission tests (e.g. STAT, ALSET, UMAT,VETASSESS)
    • Interviews, folios, auditions, aptitude and other special purpose tests, personal statements and questionnaires.
  • Scholarships
  • Special consideration
  • Important dates


Source: VTAC


learning is ongoing7
Learning is Ongoing
  • Victorian Skills Gateway:
    • Information about Certificate and Diploma courses
    • Explains terms about careers and courses
    • Fees and financial support
    • Occupation search
    • Answers to questions



focus on the journey
Focus on the Journey

Skills and industries

Source: “Hope-Filled Engagement”

Poehnell & Amundson


focus on the journey1
Focus on the Journey
    • Don’t focus on one destination only
  • Know what you want, but don’t be too sure
  • Be open to changing your mind
    • Recognise that your career journey will be throughout your lifetime
    • Appreciate and value each experience along the way



follow your heart
Follow your Heart


Is it okay to tell your kids they can do and be anything?



Source: Network 10


follow your heart1
Follow your Heart

Ring 4: Is it planned (P) or spontaneous (S)

Ring 5: Do you do it alone (A) or with someone else (SE)

Ring 6: Does it involve your mind (M), body (B), spirit (S) or emotions (E) or a combination

Ring 1:What are three things you like to do

Ring 2: How long is it since you did each thing

Ring 3: Does it cost ($) or is it free(F)

Adapted from “Guiding Circles”,

McCormick, Amundson & Poehnell

access your allies
Access your Allies


Adapted from “Lasting Gifts”

Canadian Career Development Foundation


how do you identify where young people are most engaged in life
How do you identify where young people are most engaged in life?

By noticing:

  • what they enjoy doing
  • what can’t they stop doing
  • what they are complimented on
  • where they are engaged
  • what motivates them
  • their favourite things

What drives them?


broaden ideas for work and career paths
Broaden ideas for work and career paths


  • open-mindedness
  • and discuss their passions and where they could lead
  • learning, we are always learning
  • the possibilities and be positive
  • flexibility
  • exploring (research information)
  • www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9KawhtfORI

Source: “School A to Z”

NSW Government

Education & Communities


where is the young person at in their career journey
Where is the young person at in their career journey?

Does know, but I don’t think it is possible!

Does know, but needs considerable pathways planning

Don’t know

Won’t commit

Won’t engage or talk



being a good listener
Being a Good Listener
  • Give your full attention
    • Stop what you are doing
  • Don’t interrupt
    • Let your teenager speak
  • Stay as calm as you can
    • If you’re caught off-guard by what they are saying, breath deeply
  • Listen for emotions
    • Hear what they are saying beneath the words
  • Give it time
    • Don’t rush in with your response


helping to set goals and plans
Helping to Set Goals and Plans

Career Action Plans:

  • use the three stages of career development:
    • self-development;
    • career exploration; and
    • career management
  • help young people to:
    • set their goals;
    • clarify the actions needed to achieve these goals; and
    • commit to participating in the planned activities



  • My Guide
  • Build your career profile
  • Explore career ideas
  • Consider career options
  • Develop your career plan

The Facts

  • Careers
  • Work and Employment
  • Education and Training
  • Funding
  • Contacts
  • Skills
  • myQuiz
  • 5 activities



myfuture mini career explorer
myfuture Mini Career Explorer


Source: myfuture


other important information
Other Important Information

Special Entrance Access Scheme (SEAS) Categories:

  • Personal information and location
  • Non-English speaking background
  • Difficult circumstances
  • Disadvantaged financial background
  • Disability of medical condition
  • SALT, REEP and PPP


Source: VTAC


scholarships and help with fees
Scholarships and help with fees


  • Access and Equity Scholarships
  • Commonwealth Scholarships
  • Merit Scholarships


Help with fees

  • HECS Help
  • VET Fee Help


key workshop messages
Key Workshop Messages
  • The crucial role of parents and others play in the career development of young people
  • That career development is a lifelong journey
  • The value of career conversations
  • Engage young people where they are at in life
  • Information and resources are available


next steps
Next Steps
  • Talk to your teenager
  • Help them find out who they are, what drives them, what interests them.
  • Help them to explore their “preferred future” and how they may work towards it.
  • Help them articulate how they want to contribute to their world.

Discuss change

  • Discuss the changes that are happening in the community and in their world.
  • What opportunities does change present?


next steps1
Next Steps


  • Use your networks to give your child opportunities to experience and explore different things.

Use labour market information

  • Be aware of the shifting labour market and be predictive about what that may mean for future opportunities.

Be an ally

  • Support your teenager on their journey and remind them, and yourself, that is it okay to be uncertain.