Career Testing and Internship Overview
One of the primary goals of the Compass Project is to help individuals identify, understand and plan for a career and educational direction. With this goal in mind, the purpose of the career assessment and internship program is twofold. The first purpose is to help each individual student develop a greater self-awareness of interests, abilities, values, and personality preferences. The second purpose is to help each individual discover areas of study and experience potential career options based on the information gathered from the assessments and discussions.
When coupled with meetings and interpretations from our qualified staff of Mental Health Counselors and Social Workers, the assessments are utilized as a tool to help each individual gain a clear perspective of future career paths and how do deal with career changes over time. The program also helps each individual to develop:
- A plan of action to explore identified educational and career paths
- A greater sense of confidence in unique traits and abilities
- greater control over executive functioning skills such as organization, planning, emotional control and the ability to self-regulate in a job setting
- A heightened sense of psychological and emotional well-being
Participants meet with one of our counselors for three to four sessions and get written and verbal feedback.
Internships provide an opportunity for participants to gain hands on experience in the field of his or her interest. After developing a greater understanding of a client’s career and educational options based on the identified skills, values, interests, personality and strengths, Compass staff works with each person to find a unique internship placement.
The internship process includes:
- Additional meetings with the Compass staff to discuss options for a placement
- Assistance with the development or refinement of resumes, cover letters, a personal pitch, interview skills, and job search techniques
- Periodic feedback meetings and check-ins with the job site supervisors throughout the placement to ensure satisfaction and success
- For summer participants, weekly group meetings to discuss internship experience
Tests and Assessment Details
Tests and Assessments are used as tools to help us identify and understand what college majors, internships and potential careers might be of most interest. There are a number of tools that we may utilize, and the decision is largely dependent on the specific needs, goals and background of each individual. The following is a brief overview of the various tests that we utilize.
Strong Interest Inventory
The Strong generates an in-depth assessment of interests among a broad range of occupations, work and leisure activities, and educational subjects. To reveal interest patterns, it presents results on a variety of complementary themes and scales:
- · The General Occupational Themes maps out broad interest patterns to describe personalities and preferred work environments (corresponding to Holland’s RIASEC theory—see also Self Directed Search).
- · Basic Interest Scales provide more specific information about areas of interest
- · Occupational Scales relate interest patterns to those of satisfied workers within the occupation.
- · Personal Style Scales describe preferred style of working, learning, leading, risk-taking, and team participation.
CareerScope® takes career and educational planning to a new level. The proven career assessment and reporting system from Vocational Research Institute is a powerful, yet easy-to-use program. With more than 40 years of experience developing world-class assessment programs, VRI has designed a system that measures both aptitude and interest through valid and reliable assessment tasks. The results are instrumental in helping an individual begin the career or educational planning process.
CareerScope Results are Valuable for:
The Myers-Briggs Personality Type Indicator
The purpose of the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) personality inventory is to make the theory of psychological types described by C. G. Jung understandable and useful in people’s lives. The essence of the theory is that much seemingly random variation in the behavior is actually quite orderly and consistent, being due to basic differences in the ways individuals prefer to use their perception and judgment.
In developing the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator [instrument], the aim of Isabel Briggs Myers, and her mother, Katharine Briggs, was to make the insights of type theory accessible to individuals and groups. They addressed the two related goals in the developments and application of the MBTI instrument:
- · The identification of basic preferences of each of the four dichotomies specified or implicit in Jung’s theory.
- · The identification and description of the 16 distinctive personality types that result from the interactions among the preferences
The Cattell 16PF (16 Personality Factor) defines our basic, underlying personality, without regard to how we apply it or the environment in which we apply it. A simple analogy would be to think of the human being as a personal computer. Personality profiles such as 16PF measure the basic features of the PC such as the size of the hard disk, RAM, processing speed and so on. If an individual can understand what their personality is, they can then make better use of strengths, and make allowances for the resultant weaknesses.
My Vocational Situation
There are three scales to assess individual feelings about career identity, information and barriers.
The Identity Scale helps uncover if someone has a clear and stable view of one’s goals, interests and talents. It also helps identify if they have confidence in their ability to make career decisions.
Need for Information Scale helps identify if someone is in need of occupational information, training, and/or employment information.
The Barriers Scale helps identify if someone has problems with finishing or funding education or training, or problems with lack of approval from an important person.
The essence of the values inventory is to help an individual understand what is most important to them; the "what counts" factor. In general, values will stay consistent over time, although interests may often change. Therefore, we must consider values as equally important as interests, personality and aptitudes when it comes to helping someone decide on potential career and educational paths.
BRIEF- Behavior Rating of Executive Functioning
The BRIEF is a questionnaire about "executive" functioning, focusing on strengths and weaknesses in controlling ones thinking, behavior, and abiltiy to problem-solve.
The executive functions direct how we solve problems, how we act in our daily lives, how we manage our feelings, and how we control our attention. We break them into specific areas, including the ability to (a) choose goals for ourselves, (b) plan and organize our work, (c) inhibit (block out) distractions or stop inappropriate behaviors, (d) hold a goal and plan in mind, (e) try new approaches when needed, (f) complete work, (g) be aware of how our own behavior affects others, (h) control our emotions, (i) keep up attention and effort, and (j) manage our "stuff' such as a backpack, locker, room or office. These executive functions can impact many of the things we do, including how well we do in school, how we function in a work environment, how well we control our behavior, and how well we get along with friends, family, teachers and co-workers.
We utilize the BRIEF to understand challenges and to help us develop coping strategies and mechanisms to control thoughts and behaviors.