You may already have a clear idea of what you’d like to do in your adult life; you may have some vague ambitions; or you may not have a clue.
It’s not a bad idea to spend some time thinking about your future.
The most important thing is to keep as many options open as possible!
Even if you don’t think you will want to study a moment longer than you have to, try to do as well as you can in school exams; your plans may change, and you may find it hard to get into a course, or be chosen for a job, without a particular qualification.
If you do have a particular career or course in mind, spend some time finding out what you will need to achieve that aim.
Look at the job profiles on the National Careers Service or Prospects websites, which set out what is needed for hundreds of different jobs. Future Finder allows you to match A-level subjects with future careers and explore what jobs might be most needed (and best paid!) in the future.
See what you can do to help yourself by
- doing relevant volunteer work
- making sure you are studying the right subjects at school or college – see our education pages here
- doing relevant additional courses or classes that might be available
All these things will help you to find out whether this career or course really is for you; and will help to show your commitment and enthusiasm when you do apply.
Some courses and careers are particularly competitive and you’ll need to be very determined if you want to get in. You’ll need to decide if you are prepared to sacrifice some free time in your teenage years – studying harder and for longer hours than your friends, for example, or dedicating all your free time to ballet or music practice – in order to achieve your aim.
Don’t worry if you don’t have any particular course or career in mind. There is plenty else to keep you occupied during your teenage years, and you may suddenly find yourself inspired by a holiday, a trip to London or watching a film. Writing things down in a diary or notebook can also sometimes help you understand yourself better, and might even lead to a sudden revelation of what you really want to do with your life!
Try to keep an open mind, look out for things you find interesting, develop your hobbies and interests outside school, talk to friends and friends’ parents – and keep as many options open as possible. You don’t know what will happen in the future and your dream job may not even have been invented yet.
have a look at these other agnes pages: