Thanks to career counselling, Selma is making a decision about her future profession
A secondary school student from Podgorica is participating in the “Prilike” programme, which offers practical training and the possibility of career counselling to adolescents
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Podgorica, 20 May 2022 – Selma (18) is a general secondary school student from Podgorica. She loves foreign languages and enjoys working with young people. She is interested in journalism and activism. She has different interests but is not yet sure what her future profession might be. For this reason, through the “Prilike” (Opportunities) programme implemented by ADP-ZID with the help of UNICEF and with the financial support of the TUI Care Foundation, she was given the opportunity to participate in individual career counselling session after her practical training.
“Being a young person, I am aware that I have a number of opportunities and this programme was an opportunity for me to better recognize my own skills and qualities in order to better choose my future profession,” Selma says.
In addition to the opportunity for individual support through the career counselling that the “Prilike” programme offers, adolescents in Montenegro get the chance to try their hand in a field of interest and obtain their first practical experience that will help them choose their future profession. Thus, during the career counselling session, Selma talked about a number of occupations and the identification of the skills needed to perform such jobs successfully.
“We determined three avenues in which I can see myself and my career path, and I managed to find out that these are firstly activism, followed by translation and interpreting. In addition, I decided to try my hand at journalism because I believe that these are all professions that are closely connected,” this secondary school student added.
The career counselling session was led by psychologist Maja Lješnjak from ADP-ZID, who believes that career development should begin at the early stages of schooling.
“The career counselling process helps adolescents understand that they are responsible for managing their own careers and gives them the opportunity to recognize and develop the skills they need,” Maja Lješnjak says.
Thanks to the “Prilike” programme, in addition to career counselling, Selma also attended practical training organized by KOD. There she learned the basics of journalism and how to create a video podcast.
“We are delighted that young people are showing interest in doing a job they love because then they can give their best,” Nina Pantović from the organization KOD says. She believes that the “Prilike” programme has been a great chance for their organization to “host young people and hear their thoughts and new ideas about activism and their participation”.
Given that most adolescents from Montenegro have no experience of career counselling and that career guidance and counselling services in schools are virtually non-existent, the programme is an opportunity for secondary school students to receive support in making independent decisions about their future careers from professionals in this field.
The issue of including youth in socio-economic processes is particularly important since research shows that adolescents are most concerned about the economic situation and the huge uncertainty related to finding a job. In addition to this, the share of young people in Montenegro who are not in education, employment or training (26.6%, European Commission, 2021) increased in 2020. UNICEF’s programme “Prilike” provides adolescents with the opportunity to gain their first practical experience and receive career counselling in order to contribute to the successful transition of adolescents from education to the jobs market.
“As many as 98% of adolescents who have applied to participate in the ‘Prilike’ programme have no previous experience of practical training, while all of them want to participate in at least one career counselling session", said Ivana Bošković, UNICEF’s national consultant for the “Prilike” programme.
This programme strives to let adolescents in Montenegro come into contact with the jobs market for the first time and to identify their career paths.
All interested secondary school students from Montenegro can apply for training or career counselling using the following link: Prilike - Poziv za mlade (typeform.com)
UNICEF will use the “Prilike” programme to point out the need for services that help adolescents improve their knowledge and skills for the jobs market, making it easier for them to decide on their further education and future profession. This will, in turn, empower adolescents to manage their own careers. The programme’s long-term goal is to contribute to the successful transition of adolescents from education to the jobs market.