YouScience Builds Confidence in Teenage Girls’ Resume Writing
Preparing students for adulthood should be a prime focus in secondary education. Resume writing, interview skills, and being able to articulate one’s talents, special traits, and assets for potential employers and future college and career opportunities, falls under that scope. When asked to communicate what they’re good at, most people fumble over their words. Take that challenge to a bunch of teenagers and it’s no surprise you get crickets.
That’s exactly what school counselor Amelia Mann found when working with her students at the Girls Preparatory School in Chattanooga, Tennessee. Her students had a difficult time articulating their qualities on a resume.
Wanting to implement a program to help them prepare for future careers and resume writing, Amelia turned to YouScience Discovery. “Our advisory program didn’t have any kind of self–awareness mechanism. It seemed like, at least with my experience working with YouScience, it would be a good tool to consider linking the whole person aspect that YouScience really looks at.”
The Whole Person Aspect
Having been a counselor for over 20 years, Amelia recently switched college and career planning tools and her school began using YouScience with the ninth graders to help them discover how their innate abilities and attributes define how they learn.
“I think it’s given our students and teachers more of a vocabulary to explain who they are as a person and who they are as a learner. Connecting that to college counseling is something that happens a little later. We start ninth graders with YouScience Discovery and the understanding of self.”
In more words, the benefit that students and educators gain from using the YouScience Discovery tool is that it provides each participant with specific language that best describes their distinct personality, traits, strengths, and how they work in group or independent scenarios. It gives statements like, “You think on your feet, respond quickly, and enjoy engaging in brainstorming sessions.” The value that comes from having that knowledge early on in high school gives counselors, teachers, and students direct insight into best practice learning strategies and how to prepare for their futures. It also provides specific language that can be used on college and job resumes.
The Lesson Plan
To help the girls foster the art of positive self-description, Amelia created a lesson plan to work with juniors on incorporating their YouScience Discovery results into resume building, essay writing, and interview preparation. After downloading the YouScience Resume Language, College and Career Planning Worksheet, she would ask the students to look at their YouScience inventory results and choose terms that describe them. They were then asked to think about the impact those descriptors had in their lives, whether applicable in school, work, or family life. Finally, they shared their insights with the group.
One student, Mary, shared that she was naturally good at group work and someone that would help others in a group situation. For validation, Amelia asked those who’d worked with Mary to share examples of the different hats she wore in each group interaction. Because they knew each other well, they were able to describe her in a way that empowered and edified her. In turn, Mary was able to enhance her resume by sharing specific examples rather than the typical: “I’m a hard worker and I like people.”
Amelia helped the girls connect examples in their lives to their YouScience results. They wrote detailed, impactful statements on their resumes about who they are, what they do, and why. As they moved forward with interview skills and essay writing, they continually referenced back to their YouScience results as a brainstorming tool.
“It was one of those moments where they were empowered and felt like they were doing interesting things even though they didn’t see it that way initially.”
When it came time to explore summer internships, job shadowing, or course selection for their senior year, the girls referred to their YouScience results as a jumping off point. For many, it was an underlying affirmation and it exposed them to new career paths.
The Power Behind YouScience
In an article published by Cambridge University entitled “YouScience: Mitigating the Skills Gap by Addressing the Gender Imbalance in High-demand Careers,” the University of Missouri found that, “when compared to interest assessments, aptitude assessments helped identify seven times more female students with the natural talent for careers in construction and technical health care, four times more females with the talent for jobs in the manufacturing field, and twice as many females with the talent for jobs in computer technology.”
As girls, many of her students were interested in STEM, but had only considered careers in nursing or physical therapy. Receiving results that tied their science-minded brains to accounting and other science-based careers allowed them to expand their worldview. YouScience opened their eyes to their potential, gave them the confidence to pursue different options, and provided specific language that allowed them to “humble brag” without feeling self-conscious.
When it comes down to it, YouScience Discovery does three profound things:
1. Provides a way for counselors and educators to understand their students on another level. It helps break down the barriers that prevent students from learning because their specific needs aren’t being met.
2. Allows students — teenage girls — to look at the whole picture; to be exposed to choices they wouldn’t have even considered or even known TO consider; to explore options and create a vision beyond what’s directly in front of them; and to be able to articulate their strengths in a clear, impactful way.
3. By using it in present day learning — in addition to college and career planning — educators are breaking down walls, building futures, and preparing students for life beyond high school.
All in all, YouScience empowers students to be EXACTLY who they are.
Connect students to their best-fit pathways, careers, and post-secondary opportunities.
To learn more about YouScience and how this unique platform is changing students’ lives, connect with one of our regional directors.