There are some days when I’m sitting here in my office when I didn’t sleep enough the night before and my coffee has worn off and I feel like I could actually fall asleep sitting totally upright in my chair if I just tip my head back…and then I realize I haven’t made my post here on GMS yet, and it’s like a dagger in my soul. Especially when I don’t have a good topic lined up. No nap for me!
And then I remember…Counselor Buddy! The Robin to my Batman! Robin C-Buddy emails me lists of good stuff to write about, and today I’ll be leaning on those lists because of that whole coffee-and-sleep situation above.
Today, a hellaciously unique piece of advice that I’m almost sure you haven’t heard before. If you’re not absolutely lockdown certain what you want to be when you grow up (and even if you are, you’re probably wrong), then Counselor Buddy suggests — the ASVAB?
For those who are unsure what they want to do post-secondary,
the ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery) offers an
exceptional career assessment piece.
Oh? You mean that test I should only take if I’m thinking about joining the military or want recruiters to start calling me?
Students often believe that they should only take the ASVAB if they are thinking about joining the military or believe if they take the ASVAB then recruiters will start calling them.
Oh…gotcha. That’s the one.
Recruiters are allowed by law to receive all names and phone numbers of juniors, so they will be calling regardless of whether you take the ASVAB or not.
Will they ever! I remember how many times they called me in high school, and we weren’t even at war or stretched thing troop-wise the way we are now.
However, when I think of the ASVAB test today, I think about it as something that really only serves a purpose if you’re going to join the military. But I think I’m about to be shown the error of my ways.
The ASVAB has sections that test more than academic ability; it also measures mechanical comprehension, electronic information, among others.
Ah, that’s right. Upon further research: General, Mechanical, Administrative and Electrical sections.
I remember that well from high school, actually, now that you mention it, because I remember the mechanical, electronics and spatial-relations parts of that test being hard for me, because I was a complete bookworm and not a hands-on guy at all.
When students receive their ASVAB scores, they are also given a code to use online at the ASVAB site which offers a comprehensive career assessment using the 16 career clusters. It’s one of the better tools I’ve seen for students to see what they would be capable of, or have some natural ability in, based on how they scored on the test. The career assessment is created and designed specifically for each student, based on their ASVAB results. The code to access their data online is available for a set amount of time (I think the code is good for one year?).
You know, I’d forgotten all about this. Well, not the online part, that part didn’t exist when I was in high school, but I remember getting a pretty decent little summary of jobs I might be good at. And I don’t remember laughing at it or ridiculing it, so it must’ve been halfway decent, because a good part of my high school life was spent ridiculing and laughing at things I didn’t understand or thought were stupid.
And I remember also being impressed that it did a decent job picking careers for me, since my skill set was miles away from anything you’d normally associate with the military (I liked reading and writing, basically, and I wasn’t skilled at anything mechanical, scientific, etc.).
Remember, too, that even if you’re not going straight into a career right now (military or otherwise) and you’re going straight to college, you still have to choose a career, and presumably you’ll choose an academic major based on that projected career.
So, if you’ve got any lingering doubt whatsoever as to what you want to do with your life, give it a shot. There are a lot of careers out there that even the most informed students have never even heard of (I’m still discovering a lot that I haven’t heard of myself, actually), and you might like what you find.
Anyone out there taken the ASVAB? Are you required to take it? (I was, but I was a military brat at a military school, so I don’t know the M.O. for all you civilian students.) If you’re interested in not only taking but actually studying for it, here are some ASVAB practice tests from Military.com that should get you in ship-shape for it.
Has it given you some good options for careers that you think you might like? Let us know in the comments below.