Life After High School

Some people know exactly what they want to do when they finish school. Some search much of their lives for a career they will find fulfilling, and others stumble accidentally into work that ignites their passion. As you think about college, think about what you would like to achieve in your life and work toward that goal. Whether you achieve your goal immediately, take a detour on the way, or revise it as you go, it's important to pursue your interests and dreams, wherever they may take you. Those who have the most regrets in life are those who don't make the attempt to change what isn't working for them.

This worksheet is designed to help you and your family discuss what you'd like to do after high school and how you can get there. Your first step is to get to know yourself. Use the following questions to explore your ideas.

  • What are your interests/dreams?
  • What motivates you?
  • Where do you see yourself in ten years? Be specific about what you'll be doing, where you'll be living, and what your life will be like.
  • How will you get there? List the steps.
  • List five things you would not be able to live without. How will these things affect your life, your work?
  • What roadblocks might inhibit you from reaching your goals? How might you negotiate those roadblocks?
  • What would constitute success in your life?

Percent of Population Completing University in Selected Countries (Ages 25 - 34)

United States25%
Netherlands22%
Korea18%
Canada17%
Sweden14%
Germany13%
United Kingdom12%
France11%
Austria6%

Education at a Glance: OECD Indicators, Center for Educational Research and Innovation (1997).