Do you know what your child’s dream job is? You might be surprised by the answer!
We all want great things for our children. Many of our children want great things for themselves too. But do we want the same things? The recent GoStudent Future of Education Report found out what the top dream industries are for young people today. Read on to find out more…
- What is the GoStudent Education Report?
- What are the report findings?
- What are the top dream jobs?
- Ways to support your child for the future
What is the GoStudent Education Report?
Here at GoStudent, we believe in giving every child the support that they need to fulfill their potential. That means supporting them academically to help them with their future career to find their dream job.
In order to better understand the needs of pupils and guide the support which they’re given, we conducted a survey into how students and parents feel about the education they’re receiving and how they feel it will help – or not help – them in their pursuit of their dream job.
The GoStudent Education Report gathered data from a diverse but representative sample of over 12,000 parents or guardians and children across six different European countries including the UK.
Our report aimed to find out what children feel about their current education; what they feel about – and hope for – for their future; and how the education system is supporting them – and also how it might be letting them down.
What are the GoStudent Education Report findings?
So what did the report find out? Here are some of the top results relating to children in the UK and their dream jobs…
- Three times as many children are inspired by a career in health and social care as are driven to become social media influencers
- More than 7 in 10 children want to “make a difference in the world”
- Evidence that existing education is failing to keep up with a fast changing world – with 57% of children thinking that school alone is not preparing them for their dream job.
As well as this, our report also concluded that 89% of UK children stated that having a job that they love is a priority for them in the future and that 73% aspire to make a difference in the world.
It is clear that today’s children know what is important to them and what sort of mark they want to make on the world.
However, in contrast to these rather positive statistics, the report also found that 57% of UK children believe that school alone is not preparing them for their dream job and that 21% of children who do not plan to attend higher education have decided this because they don’t think they will achieve the required grades.
This is a sign that children are very much aware of the difficulties that they will likely face when fighting for their future careers. These results raise some important questions. Most importantly: in what ways can we support our children for the future.
What are the top dream jobs for children?
A few generations ago children wanted to be tractor drivers, ballerinas and astronauts. Nowadays, career options are a lot more diverse. This is due to all of the new roles, industries and possibilities that have been created by technology.
Some of the results from our survey may come as a surprise, especially at a time when media messages about young people suggest self-obsession and a lack of interest in the wider community.
The top most sought-after job categories for Generation Z and Alpha are:
- Health and Social Care - 13%
- Creative Industry - 12%
- Sport and Leisure - 11%
- Animal Care - 10%
- Computing and Science - 7%
You might be thinking to yourself, ‘this doesn’t make sense! Don’t young people want to become influencers and YouTubers now?’ The answer is because social media influencer only came out as number 12 – significantly lower than it might have been a few years ago, as a past similar poll suggested.
Given the widespread ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is perhaps unsurprising that health and social care is the sector most young people aspire to work in, with technology a close second.
Ways to support your child for the future
According to the GoStudent Director of Future Labs, Alexander Nick, ‘Once students leave school, they face a crucial decision to pick a career path. A decision, made with imperfect information, that will often dictate decades of one's life.’
So what can we do to make sure that our children are not making crucial life decisions based on misinformation and nonsense? Well, we need to start off by educating them.
There is no fixed age from when it is considered to be appropriate or correct to start talking to children about jobs they could do. There is nothing wrong in explaining to young children that people can choose their job and ask them what they’d like to be when they’re older.
Here is a breakdown in ways to support your child for the future:
- Encourage them to explore their options
- Use real world examples
- Encourage extracurricular activities
- Make contact with a career advisor
- Work experience and volunteering
1. Encourage them to explore their options
It’s of course beneficial to encourage your child to further explore their own interests and strengths, and you can help with this by exposing them to a wide variety of career options that relate to these interests.
Remember that while providing guidance and support is helpful for your child, it’s always best to ensure that you do this in a way that does not impose your own agenda on them.
2. Use real world examples
It’s also good to keep an eye out for local events that align with your child’s interests and any career aspirations. For example, if your child has mentioned that they want to become a doctor, take them to hospital open days or science week events in your local area.
Everyday outings can also be a learning opportunity. If you take your child to the library you can explain the role the librarian has there and encourage your child to ask questions or if they’re really into climbing trees, you can tell them that there’s a job called a tree surgeon which involves this!
3. Encourage extracurricular activities
Odds are, there are many different after school clubs and extracurricular activities in your child’s school which could be useful for giving them insight into different careers – so encourage them to sign up!
Encouraging your child to engage in team-based activities such as a football team, a choir or the Scouts will help your child develop many essential life skills such as communication skills, problem solving, critical thinking, time management, and interpersonal skills. These all make great qualities that will last a lifetime and help your child succeed in pursuing their dream job.
4. Make contact with a career advisor
Many schools, particularly secondary schools, should have a career advisor available to offer guidance to their students regarding their future and help your child identify different jobs based on their interests.
If you’re not sure whether your child’s school has one, then you can email their class tutor and ask if this is available, and if it is - then it’s great to make use of this where possible.
5. Work experience and volunteering
If your child is older, work experience is one of the best ways to teach them about the world of work. In case you were interested, we have an article all about flexible summer jobs for teens! This will also put them on a good footing when they begin to send out their CV as they will have previous experience.
If they are struggling to find a work experience position, then also finding different opportunities to help partake in volunteer work will not only enhance their world perspective but helps to build more of these essential life skills such as empathy, organisation and understanding.
The world is a fast-changing place and children face a lot of uncertainty about their future career prospects. The best thing we can do to help them is to give them the support and encouragement that they need to flourish to help them on their path to attaining their dream job.
One of the best ways to help your child is by working with a dedicated tutor to provide 1:1 support and give them the best footing for the future.