This book offers chapters with case vignettes in which creative career interventions are applied. Each of these chapters provides a thorough exploration of the career-related challenges and needs of each unique group. The book provides an overview of the unique needs of several populations including high school and community college students; dual-career couples; stay-at-home mothers; working parents; midlife and older adults; caregivers; unwed and teen mothers; formerly incarcerated individuals; lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) individuals; veterans; culturally diverse men and women such as African American, Asian American and Latino persons; and other populations. Each population chapter opens with a case vignette in which a client’s story is presented for readers to consider. These cases highlight the diverse array of career and lifestyle-related concerns that clients may bring to counseling. The vignettes are revisited at the close of the chapter to illustrate potential ways of helping clients resolve their concerns. The book contains more than 50 innovative career interventions that are located at the end of the book. These interventions can help one to have greater insight into how creativity can be used when working with clients facing career changes and challenges.
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Caregiving is the act of tending to the needs of children, elderly adults, or sick or disabled individuals. Caregivers may perform duties such as cleaning, shopping, cooking, managing household finances, administering medication and other health care-related duties, and helping with activities of daily living. For those who have mostly or only performed unpaid caretaking duties, career transitions can be difficult to navigate. Caregivers who have to work outside of the home and maintain caretaking responsibilities are often perplexed by the logistics of balancing the two sets of competing responsibilities. Some caretakers may be at greater psychological risk due to the factors that triggered the need to seek employment along with the interruption this change may have on their identity. Career counselors are in a position to help caregivers traverse this new and unfamiliar occupational terrain.
Community colleges serve a critical role within higher education. An open access system can be both affordable and flexible; community colleges prepare students for the increasing need for skilled and educated individuals in the workforce. Although community colleges serve different goals, two primary goals are academic and vocational preparation. The vocational-technical pathway was developed to prepare individuals for entry-level positions in business and industry. Academic advisers support community college students who are preparing to transfer by advising in courses that will transfer as well as assisting with the application processes. Career centers and career counselors at community colleges offer all students a range of services. These services include providing career assessment and counseling, offering job and internship search assistance, reviewing resumes and cover letters, and sponsoring mock interviews. Regardless of the community pathway a client participates within the focus remains providing support to individuals pursuing their personal and professional aspirations.
This chapter describes career counseling considerations for African American Men, Latino Men, and Asian American Men. Interpersonal and systemic discrimination are still prominent in society, leading to elevated social and health risks for African American males. Creative career interventions could be beneficial for African American males. Narrative therapy allows clients to tell their unique stories to counselors open to learning new contexts and ways of dealing with challenges and problems within the clients’ realm of possibilities. Counselors using career counseling strategies should remember the unique needs of the populations with which they are working. Feminist theory has been extremely useful in working with marginalized populations, and this orientation can be expanded by the use of relevant career assessments. Asian Americans encounter counselors who promote individualism and focus on the needs of the client without consideration for the impact on the family.
This chapter explores the unique experiences of various groups of culturally diverse women who work in the United States and highlights common barriers faced by all culturally diverse women. It presents two career counseling theories, social cognitive career theory (SCCT) and narrative career counseling theory, which the career counselors may use to empower clients. The chapter discusses specific techniques and resources that might be beneficial to the career development of culturally diverse women across theoretical approaches. Many culturally diverse women will experience injustices that are due to racism, discrimination, oppression, sexism, and heterosexism. Career counselors working with culturally diverse women have the capacity to be agents of social change. These professionals contribute to the creation of a career demographic in the United States that is representative of the actual makeup of the nation by helping culturally diverse women anticipate possible challenges and construct proactive coping strategies.
Dual-career households are composed of couples in which both members are committed to professional occupations. Regardless of the phase of the life cycle, dual-career couples face unique stressors related to time constraints, and work responsibilities. In addition to time working at an office, a common arrangement affecting couples’ decisions and family life is working from home. A crucial barrier to couples maintaining an ideal career trajectory is the availability of meaningful employment within a confined geographical area. An additional constraint on working families is availability and accessibility to childcare. When funding childcare becomes a concern, couples may seek financial assistance through government-funded childcare subsidy programs, such as the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF). An ideal focus for clinicians working with dual-career couples is on sensitivity, positivity, and intentionality. Couples may also take the therapeutic process as an opportunity to develop a healthy lifestyle to cope with dual-career obligations.
Potential employers may be hesitant to hire former inmates due to perceived risk of employment failure or business loss. Formerly incarcerated persons may have spotty work histories and may have limited education and job training background, creating further obstacles to gainful employment. Educational illiteracy, limited job skills and interpersonal skills, criminal history, and neighborhood settings have been cited as obstacles to employment as well as increasing risk for reincarceration. In light of the evidence from the professional literature, it seems that in order for parolees and other ex-offenders to succeed in establishing a traditional career, a range of needs must be recognized. The needs include: education, housing, aftercare services, child care, social support, treatment, policy changes, employment support, and job training. Intervention strategies to assist formerly incarcerated individuals to get and keep jobs and to avoid reincarceration emerge from diverse models representing a range of offender needs.
The occupational opportunities for high school graduates have changed in the past few decades. In recent decades, the educational requirements for jobs across the career spectrum have increased, changing the types of available positions for individuals without postsecondary education. Young adults who understand themselves and the demands of the world of work are better able to make career choices congruent with their values and interests. High school graduates who are adaptable and open minded in their job search will retain employment in a workforce that is constantly changing. It is important for high school students to receive realistic information about their skills, interests, and the job market so that they can make effective career decisions. Recent high school graduates could access the employment projections from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). Career counselors help high school graduates establish realistic expectations and develop strategies to remain flexible into the working world.
This chapter illustrates the career challenges faced by Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) community with a case study of a 45-year-old gay male whose employment was recently terminated. The LGBT community has made tremendous legal, social, and political progress over the last two decades; yet, LGBT persons still encounter barriers and obstacles in ways that can be very different than their heterosexual counterparts. Sexual orientation continues to be a workplace issue because no federal laws protect LGBT individuals from employment discrimination. A model for effective practice, Career Counseling With Under Served Populations (CCUSP), was developed by Dr. Mark Pope and was originally based on his earlier research in career development with LGBT individuals. The chapter provides a summary of the 13 key components that provide culturally appropriate career services. Using these keys as guidelines, appropriate holistic career counseling is a likely outcome.
- Go to chapter: Midlife Adults: at 40, the Eyes had it, now at 50, the Career Does! when Career Vision Begins to Blur
Midlife Adults: at 40, the Eyes had it, now at 50, the Career Does! when Career Vision Begins to Blur
This chapter discusses the historical overview of middle-aged workers, barriers to career transition and resources for midlife transition counselling. It opens with a case vignette of a 51-year-old Black male who worked for several small companies as a mechanic. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, middle-aged workers older than 50 years experienced a sharp increase in unemployment. From losing a position to voluntary transition, middle-aged workers are a specific demographic that may experience difficulty in navigating career change. The psychological aspects of career transition can be threatening and difficult to predict. In addition to the obstacles concerning midlife transition, there are psychosocial needs that are important to the career counseling process. Various resources are available to help augment the career counseling process and assist the client in making a career transition. These resources are listed as activities to extend the concepts discussed in the counseling sessions.