Original Research

Their stories: Children, exemplary models and career narratives

Hande Sensoy-Briddick, William C. Briddick
African Journal of Career Development | Vol 4, No 1 | a63 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ajcd.v4i1.63 | © 2022 Hande Sensoy-Briddick, William C. Briddick | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 11 August 2022 | Published: 12 December 2022

About the author(s)

Hande Sensoy-Briddick, Department of Counseling and Human Resource Development, Faculty of Counseling and Human Development, South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD, United States
William C. Briddick, Department of Counseling and Human Resource Development, Faculty of Counseling and Human Development, South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD, United States


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Abstract

Background: Despite the consensus on the significance of early career development, we still know little about the best-or-evidence-based practices for this demographic. Searching the keywords career development and marginalised populations and/or communities within the PychINFO, we found that 11% of articles were related to children, while only 1% of them were related to marginalised children. This indicates a strong need for scholarly attention on children of colour and their career development.

Objective: This manuscript outlines the construction of a curriculum developed to be used by counsellors in facilitating the career development of children, particularly those from minoritised communities. We hope that the curriculum will contribute to the scholarly discussion on best practices for career intervention in childhood.

Methods: Rooted in the narrative, social construction perspectives, the curriculum was prepared by assembling career and life narratives of culturally diverse exemplary models. These narratives of persistence provided children with various strategies exemplary models implemented to overcome barriers that challenged their sense of agency. Collaborating school counselling staff used three stories within the curriculum with the hope of increasing children’s sense of agency and adaptability. Students were third graders from a high-need elementary school. About one-fourth of the student body represented diverse cultural backgrounds, including Indigenous, Latino/a and black communities.

Results: Initial feedback from the counselling staff indicated that the curriculum lessons were well-received by the children. They were able to engage in age-appropriate narrative analysis via questions asked by the counselling staff.

Conclusion: Although the effectiveness of the curriculum is yet to be determined, the curriculum shows promise for assisting children in increasing their own sense of agency and in crafting their own career narratives.

Contribution: This manuscript provides a unique and promising approach to facilitating the early career development of children.


Keywords

children; career narratives; curriculum; resilience; exemplary models.

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 4: Quality education

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