Becoming a Career Development Professional – Part 1

Have you ever wondered what a career development professional or practitioner is and how you can become one? If so, then you have come to the right place: we’re going to answer that question for you and more. 

What is a CDP?

CDPs are Career Development Professionals (or Practitioners) who work with individuals and/or groups to navigate their career journeys through self-reflection, career exploration, decision-making, and planning. The field is a growing and exciting one. CDPs use their creativity and imaginations to find customized and unique ways to help others. CDPs often serve as educators, mentors, role models, and advocates – all at the same time.

Career development has been around for many years in a variety of settings – in schools, workplaces, and community service agencies. As far back as ancient times, philosophers would discuss what was important in life and how to live decent lives with purpose. Those discussions continue today in the career development sector.

The term “career development professional” is not always a formal designation although many professional associations have begun to offer voluntary certification. CDPs tend to “go by” many other job titles depending on their specific job role and work settings. A career or employment counsellor, for instance, may be a trained counsellor who specializes in career and holds a counselling certification/designation. CDPs represent a wide variety of educational backgrounds, including psychology, sociology, education, business, economics, and more.

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What Are the Responsibilities of a CDP?

CDPs can provide a variety of services, including:

  • Assess client’s strengths/skills, interests, personal style, and values
  • Research labour market information, trends, and opportunities
  • Identify and discuss career possibilities with clients, particularly in fields that are growing/expanding
  • Access funding for training or professional development opportunities
  • Provide work search skills training (e.g., workshops, individual coaching)
  • Support clients to make decisions, set goals, and enact action plans
  • Aid in preparation of work search materials (e.g., resumes) and strategies (e.g., mock interviews)
  • Assist employers in recruitment, retention, and engagement of workforce
Read Part 2 Here.

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