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Career choices: A report into Northern Ireland’s young people and their perceptions of careers, choices and future prospects

This research piloted for the first time an approach designed to find out more about young people’s perceptions of careers, choices and their future prospects in Northern Ireland. The aim was to connect with young people in schools and colleges between the age of 14 years old to 19 years old to find out more about their views of the world of work, the opportunities available to them, and what they think their future might look like., The objectives were as follows: To explore young people’s career decisions and preferences, including sources of information used; To identify their expectations of earnings and perceptions of employers’ expectations; To assess their levels of confidence in gaining employment, how this compares to previous generations and concerns about securing a career after post-primary education; To review the length of time they might spend in their first job and subsequently, how many jobs they expect to have in their lifetime; To investigate young people’s perceptions on the potential impact of Brexit. The findings are designed to inform government policy makers, the Education Authority, Area Learning Communities and other allied bodies, education leaders and teachers, employers and careers practitioners on what matters to young people when it comes to careers, choices and future prospects.