Investigating education requirements and identifying areas of interest and personal ability are important first steps in establishing a pathway to a career.


  • Life Skills
  • Career Exploration
  • Discovering Your Future


By the end of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Use occupations and career clusters to identify possible careers.
  • Recognize the relationship between school-related learning experiences and preparation for future careers and job opportunities.


  • Computers with Internet access
  • Career Cluster Research activity sheet (see resources)


Text in italics should be read aloud to participants. As you engage your post in activities each week, please include comments, discussions, and feedback to the group relating to Character, Leadership, and Ethics. These are important attributes that make a difference in the success of youth in the workplace and in life.


Career Cluster Research

Career Cluster Research

Have participants log into the following website: Explain that they are to research each career cluster listed on their Career Cluster Research activity sheet. They may either summarize the career cluster in their own words or list jobs they think would fit into that career cluster. Tell them to make brief notes on the level of education or type of education required to participate in these careers. Have the Explorers list the two career clusters that most interest them.


Advisor-Led Discussion

Ask Explorers to share what they learned during their research, and encourage Explorers to reference their Career Cluster Research activity sheet to guide their answers. Important points to emphasize include:

  • All work has value.
  • Careers and job choices should be made on the basis of the individual’s strong personal interests and abilities.
    • Explorers should be advised that research findings have determined that adults are most successful in careers and jobs where they are happy doing the work.
  • In addition to emphasizing personal interests as the driving factor in career and job choices, participants should be advised about being realistic in the selection of their future career or job. It is important to emphasize that participants should give consideration to more than simply an interest in a single subject or area in making a career choice.

Further, participants should be advised that many careers that seem glamorous—such as those of a rock star, professional athlete, model, movie star, hip hop performer, or basketball or football star—are extremely difficult to attain. Explorers should be advised that the chances of getting these glamorous jobs are very slim because of the rare combination of opportunity and physical attributes that result in such rare accomplishments.


Some sample questions are below. They are designed to help the participants apply what they have learned to their own interests. You are welcome to use these questions or develop your own questions that relate to your post or specific focus area.


Focusing Questions

  • How did it go? What were some of your findings?
  • What are your personal interests for a job?
  • What kind of work do you think you would like to do?
  • What do you enjoy spending your time doing?
  • In what areas do you consider yourself talented?
  • Do you have talents or areas of strength that your parents or other adults have noticed or commended?

Analysis Questions

  • Why is it helpful to look into multiple careers at this point in your life?
  • How do your skills and interests align with the careers you learned about today?

Generalization Questions

  • What can you do now to prepare for careers ahead?
  • What is the appeal of some glamorous jobs? What makes them so difficult to achieve?
  • Why is this important as you prepare for the next steps in your future?
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