Stories of Transition

The transition from high school into educational and occupational pathways is a bewildering process for many young people and their parents. From the time they start kindergarten to the day they graduate from high school, most youth travel down a relatively straightforward path. They proceed systematically from one grade to another. Everyone their age is doing pretty much what they are doing school-wise, and career decisions are something for the distant future.

Then comes high school graduation and the roadmap ends. Some young people move smoothly into post-secondary training and satisfying work while others flounder. They change their education programs multiple times or drop out altogether. Many graduate from college or university with no idea what they want to do and spend years careening from one job to another and back to school in an attempt to establish themselves in a fulfilling career. This research seeks to gain a deeper understanding of the educational and occupational pathways that high school graduates take after graduation with a particular emphasis on the supports, roadblocks, and detours they have encountered along the way.

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