It can be a daunting decision choosing the right courses fit for your career when enrolling in College or University. The amount of courses available to you is overwhelming. You suddenly find yourself registering for courses you didn’t know existed worried that somewhere down the line, you may need it.
In fact, it’s a running joke amongst millennials, that job postings are seeking candidates who have had training beyond their years in the workplace. It’s no wonder recent undergrads are stifled by the decision-making process.
Here are some things to consider when selecting courses applicable to your field of interest. The first being really simple:
What are you interested in?
Most, if not all people succeed in things they have a genuine interest or passion for. Figuring out where your true interests lie will help you to short list which courses you’re more likely to gain from.
It isn’t ground-breaking logic, but you’d be surprised by how many people need to be reminded of this - You absorb more when you care for the subject. For the next 3 to 4 years you will be rigorously studying your chosen subject. Be honest with yourself and think about whether you’ll continually be attentive to the course.
Why are you interested in your chosen course?
This is an important one. Not all subjects point to one career path and that’s an exciting thing! Once you’ve short listed your courses, search for a common denominator. What do all of these courses have in common? This will help you to decipher the “why” behind what has motivated you to make your final decision.
Figuring out why you’re interested in specific topics, will open you up to multiple careers paths that involve your overarching love for helping others, being a leader, being inventive, etc. It’s nice to know that you’re not bound by one job option.
What jobs have past students gone on to do?
With so many networking platforms available to us, we urge students to connect with others. Take advantage of LinkedIn, LunchMeet (App), Ten Thousand Coffees and other networking apps/sites to find mentors or others who have taken a similar route you’re about to embark on.
Chances are, these people will be open to giving you feedback and insight firsthand. Whether it’s to suggest you take a specific course they regret not having taken themselves, or highly recommend a course they were able to benefit from. All this information will be helpful to you.
What job specific-skills training is provided outside of school?
Not all schools offer the courses you need to meet every job requirement. But don’t be discouraged!
Find a job posting for a position you can envision yourself being in years from now and see what qualifications they’re looking for. If you find that your University or College will not be able to equip you with a specific/necessary skill, look into training programs outside of school.
The amount of workshops, training courses and events that provide educational services is endless! Some are even free and takes little time to earn certification. Know that your options are not limited to the courses you’ve selected in school. You can drop in on courses that might be provided elsewhere, or a attend industry-related events to build on your knowledge and expertise.
The internet is a great source to explore what additional educational options are available to you.
Keep these things in mind and rest-assured you’re doing what’s right for you.
Happy course selecting!