Fernando: Values and career guidance


TWO weeks ago, I was invited to speak on the integration of core values in career guidance before secondary school heads, selected guidance counselors and several Edukasyon sa Pagpapakatao (EsP) teachers of the DepEd Division of Baguio City. I must thank Ma'am Nora Dalapnas, the EsP division supervisor, for the invite. I thought it was commendable management move for the coordinators to involve values in the discussion of career guidance for its very significant role on the subject.

I believe we seldom take values into consideration when planning on our career or when we try to guide our students and children on career paths. Most of the time, we only highlight talents and skills when speaking of career success. In fact, there are other factors that our students and children needs to be enlightened of to help them with their careers. In Grade 9 EsP Module, other factors include financial consideration, goals, and values. The problem in focusing on just talents and skills is when students have to shift course in college because there is not enough financial assistance or the sudden realization that it was not what they really want. Even when one is socially skilled and has superb speaking ability, such are some of the attributes of a good lawyer, to qualify him/her in the study law, he/she cannot just dive into it because of financial consideration. The same principle can be applied to other financially demanding college courses.

My focus is the role of values in career. This is very important to us Filipinos because we put high regard on values. When speaking of values in career, I think it is like talking about happiness in our job. There are only few number of people in the country today who can say that they are happy with their jobs. Many would admit that they go to work because they need to, for survival reasons. But a person who picks a job based on his/her values, this person must be feeling fulfilled every time he/she goes to his/her work. A young man or woman who values patriotism, nationalism, and freedom must be so happy and fulfilled when accepted in the police force. Or someone who values sharing knowledge to young will be happy to become a teacher.

Career guidance is designed to lessen the problem on unemployment. We have a lot of graduates who cannot land jobs accordingly because of mismatched skills or they are not skilled enough. But we also have lots of cases where people cannot stay too long in their jobs because they are not happy. Many would not perform well in their jobs because of the same lack of satisfaction. The quality of the job performance is compromised. That is when we have employees perform for compliance sake because the works do not make enough sense for them. Oftentimes, they are the last

one to time in and the first ones to time out. The students must learn this concept of value in career-pathing as early as junior high school before they choose their tracks in Grade 11 and 12.

The students need to discover what they value in life and take this into consideration in choosing their careers. Most part of our lives are spent doing our work/job and we cannot just live these long years not feeling fulfilled in doing them. We do not want to call these years wasted times. Some questions that will help us or our students and children discover their values in life include; What sort of things or activities that make us happy? What activities or things that give us a sense of satisfaction and fulfillment? Of course, we have to ask if these things are accepted as good to make sure that we are on the right course. Is the career/job I am about to take aligned to my values?

Values, I believe, is the primary factor when choosing a career. This career of course sets course in our decision in choosing the track to take in senior high school. Yes, talents and skills are important especially from an outsider’s view but are these enough to make someone spend the rest of his adult life in a job? Why do people despite being in a job for long years, say 15 years, still get the courage to write resignation letters? Something in them must be telling it is not the right one. How come they know it? Perhaps because they are not happy, not satisfied and not feel fulfilled. Their job does not define who they are because what define them and us are our values in life.

We have the second batch of senior high school graduates this school year and it is very interesting to know if all these graduates take college courses aligned to their tracks. If yes, then good but not, it is also worth noting.


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