Figuring out what you’d like to do after high school can be really exciting…and difficult.

There are countless options to choose from and many feel overwhelmed, especially when it comes to the significance of making the ‘right’ choice.  The threat of impending student loan debt and an uncertain job market add additional pressure to choices made during this transitioning stage of life.

Undecided? Follow these 5 tips to get started!


1. Talk with a Career Coach

You don’t have to face this alone! Working one-on-one with a career coach provides a fun and strategic method to start exploring what fits you best and how to get there. You’ll participate in proven assessments and activities that help guide you through the steps below, in addition to a decision-making process and SMART planning for next steps in college and beyond.

2. Learn about yourself

The first step towards deciding what you’d like to major in is to take a look inside yourself.

What are you really interested in? What kinds of activities do you spend hours on that feel like minutes? What are your strengths and natural aptitudes?  What are some obstacles that you face? What are your beliefs and core values? What is your purpose in life? What motivates you?

Asking yourself these questions brings clarity to who you are, what you want, and where you can bring your best.

3. Explore industries and careers

Once you’ve learned more about yourself, take some time to explore what interests you! Look into what industries and careers you might like based on your strengths, interests, and preferences.  Follow your curiosity and use resources such as Road Trip Nation, O*NET, College in Colorado to help you learn more about what kinds of jobs you might enjoy and excel in.

4. Explore volunteer experiences, internships, and job shadowing

Sometimes a career or major sounds really great but once you get into it…it’s not your cup of tea. Once you’ve explored industries and careers, a great next step would be to spend some time talking to people who work in the field about their experience with an informational interview or job shadow.

Even more, seeking out volunteer experiences or an internship in the field will help you identify what suits your personality and work preferences. At Realizing Aptitudes, our career coaches also help in finding such opportunities to explore. Check out our blog to learn about additional benefits of volunteering!

5. Explore majors and utilize elective courses

Take time to fully explore majors of interest by looking into the major coursework, prerequisites, GPA requirements, and course of study for your chosen career path to determine if it is a good fit for you. You can also explore your interests by taking an elective course on a subject that you’re curious about.

Identifying any potential obstacles in your path and focusing on your unique strengths to overcome them can help you learn from each experience and enjoy the journey of life, no matter path you choose.


Picking a career or area of study is just the beginning of your journey, not the destination. 

You may take a detour and go down a different path, turn around, or make a pit stop. That’s part of the process!

You and only you have the unique privilege of learning and growing into the awesome person you are along your journey.

Enjoy the journey. 🙂

Ashley Flynn, M.A.
Career Coach & Outreach Coordinator

Known for her optimism and zest, Ashley empowers young adults to discover and shine a light on the best parts of who they are, identify ways they can positively contribute to the world, and plan for thoughtful next steps along their journey. Ashley earned a Master's in Clinical Psychology from the University of Central Florida and a Bachelors from Florida State University. When she's not at work, you can find her enjoying live music, hiking, running, or skiing in the beautiful state of Colorado.