Since the time we are quite young, we are asked “what are you going to do when you grow up?” This may translate into “how do you plan to support yourself?” This is a tough question!
There are various ways to arrive at a career direction: parents, friends, relatives, neighbors, teachers and guidance counselors all may offer advice. You might do some informational interviewing, job shadowing or take some career assessments.
I suggest you also use my favorite research sites for career information: the Occupational Outlook Handbook www.bls.gov/oco and the Occupational Information Network www.onetonline.org. Both sites provide detailed information about careers including forecasting information. It may also be helpful for you to look at local and national job boards to have an idea of what is currently in demand. The State of Ohio has a public job board (Ohiomeansjobs.com) which can be used to search for local or national openings.
It is important to consider what you know about yourself when planning for the future whether you are just finishing high school or returning to train for a career change.
Some questions you will need to consider are related to your interests, abilities and values. Do you enjoy working with your hands? Would you rather work in the out-of-doors or inside? Do you want to work more with people or things? Is this a path I want to follow for my work career or will I want to do this for my recreational/volunteer activity? What really grabs your interest?
At Terra State Community College, there are many paths to choose from that align with area and national workforce needs. I encourage you to view the college catalog located on the main Terra State website www.terra.edu to see what majors and courses excite you.
I am often asked what careers are in demand. An area I have noticed in the past several years that business and industries are looking to fill are skilled trade positions.
A majority of the employers registered on our job board are looking for individuals with technical skills. Many of these are in areas of plastics technology, computer skills, computer aided design (CAD), computer pneumatic controls (CNC), robotics, engineering, maintenance, manufacturing, quality control and other technical fields.
Many employers attending the two job fairs we host each year for our students, alumni and community members tell us they have trouble filling these type positions. They are looking for reliable individuals who like to work with their hands and have the skills required to be successful. We have several unique programs on campus that attract the attention of employers beyond our region. One of those is the plastics technology major.
No matter what your path, more opportunities are open for individuals with education beyond high school. Earning potential increases with your skill and educational level. I encourage you to consider upgrading your skills at Terra State Community College. It is an affordable resource in our region for credit and noncredit training.
Coordinator of Career Services
Terra State Community College