Career Development

Career Development: Examining Strategies for Advancing Career Development in Jamaica

Strategies for Advancing Career Development in Jamaica

by Denise N. Fyffe


Career Development is both a social and economic policy issue and it is the foundation of the school-to-work process. Career development issues must be debated at the national level if we are going to articulate that the education system has primary responsibility for preparing graduates for constructive employment or for further study or training.

Proposed Strategies

In response to the current state, the following strategies for advancement are being proposed:

Creating a career development culture

Our culture needs to promote lifelong learning for career development and instill an emphasis on individual responsibility for the provision of career education. The idea of managing one’s career and obtaining advice and information on a regular basis (not just in a crisis), should be instilled throughout life.

MOE Policies

Policy directives from the Ministry of Education to incorporate Career Development as an integral part of education, rather than an optional possibility, as is currently the case in many schools.

Mandatory inclusion of career development studies and training for teachers at Teachers’ colleges.

Career Development Association

The establishment of a recognizable association of professional Career Development Practitioners to be responsible for policies, programs, delivery systems, qualifications, and ethics & guidelines of the profession.

Campaign to change the stigma attached to certain fields of study. In some cases, career education is perceived as being solely for technical or vocational students who will not progress to college or further education.

Distinguishing the differences (in function, training, and need) between guidance counselors, career counselors, and practitioners.

Institution Alliances

Developing an alliance with national and regional educational bodies such as the University Council of Jamaica (UCJ) and the Caribbean Area Network for Quality Assurance in Tertiary Education (CANQATE) for strong partnerships and sharing of resources to achieve shared goals.

Making use of public libraries as resource centers fully equipped to meet the challenges of career information needs.

Accountability for results in career development service

For example, PROGIS making an impact, and how much compared to the resources? – The need for evaluation and accountability of service providers.

Providing access and training for adult clients: highly skilled or educated clients whose only barrier is labor market opportunity.

Including career education as part of the remedial education system for prisoners.

Making use of Technology

Computer services are central in most service areas in our economy, including the provision of career development services and a valuable information base.

Promoting Career Development as a vehicle for education reform in Jamaica.

Sensitize principals and school boards about Career Development as a part of the teaching and learning process.

The necessity of Career Education in producing better workers and citizens.

Staffing community network agencies such as Parent Teachers Associations, Church groups, The Jamaica Information Service, Police Youth Clubs, Jamaica Junior Chambers, Kiwanis clubs, neighborhood watches, strata societies, and other community service agents, and career specialists to meet the diversity of needs for adult clients. These include mid-career changers, dislocated workers, long-term unemployed persons, older workers, women entering or re-entering the labor force, persons with disabilities, incarcerated adults, and retirees.

Ensuring evaluation and improvement of existing internship programs at technical and community colleges, with a view to administering career intervention through specialized staff members.

Conduct industry workshops to attract the sponsorship of the private sector in investing in Career Development Education.


Check out Jamaican Guidance Counsellor’s Handbook

jamaican guidance counsellorThe Jamaican Guidance Counsellor’s Handbook, introduces the Jamaican educational system and highlights the psychometric movement, the trait, and factor theory as well as legislation that impacted the development of present guidelines and ethical standards. It also explores the counseling process, issues of school management, school organizational structure, and several counseling techniques which are apt for the school setting. The book also examines the various roles and responsibilities of a Jamaican Guidance Counsellor and provides a list of resource centers in Jamaica.


Available at all online book retailers and




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