Confidence in career decision-making upon first destination employment post graduation: A study of Texas Tech University seniors and graduate students

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2016-12-09

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Abstract

In today’s collegiate environment, a growing concern is apparent in regard to college graduates and their confidence in decision-making upon post-graduation employment. As students graduate college and begin seeking full-time employment, there are many factors that are taken into consideration. Are they ready to self-assess, generate options, seek information, and ultimately generate a confident career decision? The purpose of this study was to compare the relationships between confidence in their career decision-making of first destination employment under four conditions, (a) after taking StrengthsFinder ™ and receiving one-on-one person-centered coaching, (b) taking StrengthsFinder™ and not receiving one-on-one person-centered coaching, (c) not taking StrengthsFinder™ and receiving one-on-one person-centered coaching, or (d) not taking StrengthsFinder or receiving one-on-one person centered coaching. This study investigated the decision-making processes of college students graduating and obtaining their first full-time, or part-time position. Students who chose to join the military or volunteer on a full-time basis were also included in the study. University administrators, faculty, career services professionals, employment recruiters, parents, and graduating students all have a vested interest in the futures of graduating students seeking gainful employment upon graduation. With the effective implementation of person-centered career coaching and use of the StrengthsFinder™ assessment, students have the opportunity to be more confident in the career decision-making process. This study has important implications for Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS). FCS professionals have been addressing through research and professional development the relationship between work and wellbeing. Furthermore, there is an increased focus on career readiness in the secondary FCS curriculum.

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Keywords

Positive psychology, FCSE, StrengthsQuest, Career decision making, Person-centered counseling, Canonical correlation

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