I had never considered career development education as a possible pathway. I barely even knew it existed. But when I took an opportunity to become a career development educator, I immediately knew it was the right decision.
Making the jump to career development education
My discovery happened a couple of years ago at RMIT in Vietnam. I used my experience as an English teacher to land a job as a career development educator in the RMIT career centre. This was mostly out of a desire to get out of English language teaching, which was getting stale for me.
I wasn’t certain that taking the job was the right decision. I’d never been interested in the corporate world. I assumed I had to have a degree of business experience and a corporate mindset to do the job well. I was unsure what I had to offer students who were studying to become accountants, analysts, managers, or marketers.
Like a fish to water
But as soon as I started working with students, I knew that I’d be a great career development educator. I discovered that the job entailed teaching some fundamental skills. I taught students the value of concise writing, by helping them edit their resumes down to one or two powerful pages. I gave them confidence, by showing them how to drive the conversation in a job interview. I helped them articulate their goals and their values and make sound decisions, by asking them a few key questions. My experience as an English teacher was invaluable as I distilled complex ideas into engaging lessons and resources.
Full steam ahead
In helping students choose their career paths, I found mine. I have decided to commit myself to the profession of career development education. I have consolidated my career change, securing my second position as a university career consultant, at La Trobe University in Melbourne. I’m also studying RMIT’s Graduate Certificate in Career Education and Development to gain a formal credential.
I have plans for the future, of course. Hopefully, you’ll see them play out on the pages of this blog as I record some of my personal and professional learning as a career development educator.