What it is: CFC is not your average approach to understanding career development (of course, since I wrote it, I think it’s above average 🙂 More than any of my other books, this one, while written as a textbook for graduate courses in career counseling, is a practical guide to anyone looking for career development. The book provides an overview of career development and career-focused counseling – “career-focused counseling” is distinguished from other approaches because career and work issues are emotional intense topics, and is a real counseling issue. Four chapters cover each of the broad categories of career theory, and provide types of assessments and web/print resources for each. It also covers the ways in which counseling theory applies to career development. Importantly, the book covers career development with certain populations (older adults, veterans, and the differently abled, P-12 students, and college-aged individuals). In addition, it explores the intersection between certain mental health issues and career development (how each impacts each other). Last, but perhaps most importantly, it takes readers through an exploration of their own career development.
Why I wrote it: In my career, I have worked with children, adolescents, homeless adults, adults with mental health issues, individuals living with addiction, college students, and incarcerated youth. In all of these groups, career was always involved, either as a stressor that led to or exacerbated their suffering, or was impacted by their mental health, addiction, or history of incarceration. Career impacts, and is impacted by, every facet of an individual’s life. And while much has been said (written) about career development, I felt there was a need for a pithy, practical guide to help students learn to help clients while helping themselves in this core area of the human experience. I wrote it because my students did not want to read the tomes published on career counseling that may be more theory than practice. My students and supervisees wanted something they could read and take right into session with them. I also wrote it because career development is about social justice – the idea that pulling yourself up by your bootstraps assumes that you have boots to begin with. It is about putting practical steps and tools into the hands of the populace in order to aid them in making important decisions about the life they have and the one they want. Because of this, I wrote this book because I couldn’t not write it.