Career development is a process in which all youth choose and prepare for careers that fit their interests, skills, and values by participating in the three key phases of self-exploration, career exploration, and career planning and management. Families play an important role in guiding their youth through these phases by exploring real applications of career development activities and encouraging youth to get involved. Individualized learning plans (ILPs) are another valuable tool that families can share with the young people in their lives to guide them in taking charge of their future career goals and plans.
- Understanding the New Vision for Career Development: The Role of Family - This Info Brief discusses the three phases of career development, highlights Individualized Learning Plans as a tool for facilitating the career development process, and examines how families can play a role in supporting career development for their youth.
- "ILPs Across the U.S." - This interactive map provides a snapshot of current ILP policies in all 50 states and Washington, D.C.
- "Shelly Saves the Future: A Story of Career Development" Informational Comic - Follow high school senior Shelly as she uses an ILP to take charge of her future.
- "Kickstart Your ILP" Toolkit - This toolkit provides students with tips on how to jumpstart their ILPs as well as a checklist of steps to complete during each year of high school.
- Individualized Learning Plans (ILPs)
Soft skills are necessary for youth to succeed in education, job training, independent living, community participation, and, ultimately, in the workplace. Families of youth with and without disabilities play a key role in helping their children learn expected behaviors, understand the unspoken rules of the workplace, and deal with personality conflicts. Parents are also aware of their child's strengths and can build upon those assets in the process of developing soft skills. View the following resources to learn tips on how families can help youth develop soft skills.
- Soft Skills to Pay the Bills - Mastering Soft Skills for Workplace Success
- Habilidades sociales para salir adelante - Dominar habilidades sociales para tener éxito en el trabajo y un futuro seguro
- Soft Skills to Pay the Bills - Video Series
- Soft Skills to Pay the Bills - Video Series and Discussion Guide on DVD
- Soft Skills to Pay the Bills - Video Discussion Guide (PDF)
- Soft Skills to Pay the Bills - Rack Card (PDF)
- Helping Youth Build Work Skills for Job Success: Tips for Parents and Families - This InfoBrief addresses the need for youth to acquire work skills and offers strategies parents and families can use to work with their youth to develop skills that lead to success on the job.
- Helping Youth Develop Soft Skills for Job Success: Tips for Parents and Families - This InfoBrief discusses the importance of soft skills and offers strategies parents and families can use to help their child develop skills for employment success. Also available in Spanish: Ayudando a los Jóvenes a Desarrollar Habilidades Sociales para Tener Éxito en el Trabajo: Consejos para los Padres y las Familias
- The Impact of Web-Based Game Play on Soft Skills Education
- Tapping into the Power of Families: How Families of Youth with Disabilities Can Assist in Job Search and Retention
- Graduation Requirements and Diploma Options for Students with Disabilities: What Families and Advocates Need to Know
- The 411 on Disability Disclosure: A Workbook for Families, Educators, Youth Service Professionals, and Adult Allies Who Care about Youth with Disabilities
- Youth and Disability Disclosure: The Role of Families and Advocates
- Schedule A Hiring Fact Sheet for Youth