Career counseling for teens was not a great experience for the money. Call the number, go through the phone tree and select that you want to be mailed the tests, give my credit card info to a machine over the phone, get charged $250, and they send a packet of tests. When the tests have been completed, call to make an appointment. And all went according to the process I was told.
1. I called in early January, 2012, and took the first available appointment—in late March. Unfortunately when I realized that I had a conflict, I called in late February to reschedule—for late May. Don't try to get this done in a hurry. 2. The 1/2 hour appointment is entirely based on the test results. (There is no allowing for the student who didn't know what many of the careers entailed when answering questions as to whether he/she would be satisfied working as X. For many high school seniors, their knowledge of professions is not much more developed than what they have regular contact with in life or on TV: teachers, police officers, politicians, firefighters, lawyers, doctors, nurses, and what their parents do. They have a vague idea if anything of what a microbiologist does, or an electrical engineer, or a court reporter. Much less a skills manager, a sommelier, or a neighborhood planner.) The appointment consists of the counselor reading off your results, essentially phrased as "your answers were not like those of people who are in the following professions," and then telling you what you shouldn't be. There was no discussion with the teen, no checking to see if there were any questions, or if any answers had changed since first completing the tests nearly 5 months prior.
The counselor ended the appointment by telling my teen to go to the college she'd selected (which he made a snarky remark about), pick a general major that could provide learning in many different areas (with the goal of getting a qualified major adviser early on), and after 2 years of general studies, select a major that appealed. As if I couldn't have given that information to the senior.
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