In research conducted in 2017, a resounding majority of corporations and universities responded that higher education and career decisions are impacted by guidance or lack of it, provided by high schools as early as in grade 8 and 9. Over 70% of students researched also shared that college counseling should be one of the primary focus areas that are delivered in high schools. But when the high school landscape in Asia is assessed, the career and college counseling department is predominantly missing in most high schools.
Most high schools still focus on the academic areas such as Mathematics, Sciences, Languages, etc. and human resources are typically assigned to these departments in large numbers. The function of career and college counseling, which is as important (if not more) to a student’s development and is highly dynamic due to constant changes in careers and evolving program choices, usually does not receive adequate resources or attention. The International Career & College Counseling (IC3) Movement aims to change this imbalance and enable high schools to help their students make best-fit higher education and career decisions.
The IC3 Movement can be broken into three parts: Sensitize, Glamorize, and Develop (SGD).
- Sensitize educators on the need and criticality of the Career and College Counseling function
- Glamorize the profession so that enough people take on teaching and counseling as a career
- Develop the human resources and conduct research that will be needed to deliver this function effectively in schools
Through events like the IC3 Conference and IC3 Regional Forums, IC3 aims to sensitize leaders of educational institutions around the world to the need and criticality of a robust career and college counseling department: for high school leaders to invest in the setup and maintenance of this office in their schools, and for university leaders to take a counseling-oriented approach to recruitment and outreach.
Responsible counseling is about helping students find answers to three important questions: 1. What to study, 2. Where to study, and 3. How to make it happen. Counseling should not only manage the process of applying but more importantly provide guidance for students in making these important decisions.
IC3 advocates for counseling to begin directly from class 8 or 9, with a complete curriculum for counseling in each grade throughout high school. IC3 provides counselors with the tools necessary to build these processes through IC3 events and the IC3 Institute’s one-year certificate program. The IC3 Institute has been established with the goal of training 100,000 professionals and impacting 176,000 schools in the next 15 years to better equip professionals in the field through training and resources.