“Why many parents decide well before the child is grown what will they become?”

It was one of the afternoons; around 2.00 pm; I was at the auditorium of one of the well-known schools in the city. I was called to address the students of 10th,11th, and 12th-grade students. I could see boys and girls sitting on the ground; few among them had not interested expression and while few with excitements on their faces.

I started with a small story about a bird. It was caged but it used to sing beautifully. It used to make a melodious voice and the owner lady just loved hearing to it. The lady had a daughter; very pretty and she had a very sweet voice. She liked to make different voices like mimicking of other human voices and even cartoon characters. But she never liked to sing songs or learn music. Her mother seeing the birds singing so sweetly; now she wanted her daughter to become a singer, she started sending her forcefully to music classes and compelling her to make singing as her passion. Poor child, she couldn’t understand why her mother was doing this to her. The mother started planning for her daughter to be a music singer. The daughter could not understand how to tell her mother to stop forcing her; finally one day she flew bird in the open sky. She thought the cause of her force full singing will go away with a bird and her mother will change her mind.

After telling the story I asked students present there; who among you all can relate to this story. Many raised their hands. They wanted to tell about themselves, but I chose to continue for a time. I told them at this age they are only expected to focus on their career. Questions from whoever they meet will only be related to their future. They will be given suggestions from their parents and others. But they should find out what they want to be. There will be pressure from parents to take up a specific course for their career but it’s they who have to find out what is best for them. These days career counselling has become a huge hit for students to approach and get themself counselled along with their parents.

Then I started giving them highlights on career counselling. I said; it’s the centre where they have to go with their parents. There they are asked to take up the aptitude test. Aptitude tests are known as interest tests too. These tests are used to find out what the child knows better and what kind of career they can choose. Different centres have a different number of tests, but the results will show them what they can use based on their previous knowledge and skills. These tests examine the areas of language, verbal aptitude, spatial aptitude; numerical and mathematical aptitude, etc. The parents are also counselled and they are informed of what kind of career is best for you. They can get their various doubts cleared and answered there. It is no more like earlier days where only doctors and engineers were having recognitions. Today the world is changing and so the other wide numbers of opportunities have come up. Now marks and scores do not decide the future or end the future of any student. If a student is weak in their studies; still he has a bright future.

Every student has a hidden talent. Based on their talent and interest the student can take up their career and farewell in their life. The main thing required is interest and dedication. Nothing is achieved in a night’s time. You have to dedicate yourself to whatever field you are going for. Hard work and efforts will surely lead to success.

I was almost nearing to the end of the session; I got a few students to query asking how to make their parents understand and go for career counselling. For this, I requested the school and management to arrange for one awareness workshop for parents where they can learn about what career counselling is and how beneficial it can be for them as well as to their children. The session was over and I could see many students had a big smile on their faces.

Sejal Davey

Special educator, child and career counsellor and parenting coach.

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