Career Quest Expo is helping and mentoring teenagers and secondary school students get started early with conversations on self-discovery, purpose and motivates them for success in life.
The event which was recently held in Lagos trained 35 secondary school students on topics such as career options in the 21st century, maximizing the internet and social media platforms, content creation, and starting a career in tech.
The aim of the program is that these students are empowered for a great future which puts them in a vantage position to contribute significantly towards the country’s growth and economic development and ultimately toward the achievement of the global SDGs.
Fope Daniels, the convener of Career Quest Expo, an HR professional and an Employability Strategist, noted that the training program serves as a platform for students to gain confidence in who they are and gain insights into various career paths and in-demand skills in the new world of work so these students can make informed decisions about their future relative to the realities of our ever-evolving world.
“Our approach with Career Quest Expo is to leverage Informal education, a type of learning that is outside of a formal school setting, driven by intrinsic success motivations such as personal goals, interest, mindset shift, and personal development,” she said.
“There is nothing you can’t achieve with the right mindset. If you believe there are opportunities for you, then you will get it. Anything you set your mind on is very possible,” she stressed.
“When people understand what purpose means, their interests, who they are, it will better influence their decision. So we are taking that part of mind reengineering, a change in their mindset, then also exposing them to career options and make them see possibilities against the odds which is why we invited young people to share relatable success stories,” she added.
Daniels further explained, “The reason why we are focusing on this age bracket (senior secondary school students, who are about to gain university admission) is to pay it forward to these young ones so that they don’t have to go through the struggles that we went through discovering ourselves.”
Ukeka Oreoluwa, a 15-year-old SS2 student shared her story at the Career Quest expo, a mentoring event for secondary school students.
Oreoluwa explained her love for Further Math and dreams of being an engineer, noting that deciding between being a mechanical or electronic engineer has been challenging.
“I came to this program because I want to be an engineer, but I’m not sure which field. Being here opened my mind on how to choose my career path,” she said.
Speaking also, Michael Showunmi, a social entrepreneur and founder of Raising Star Africa who sees ability in his disability, advised the students to think beyond their barriers.
“They should think ahead, change their mindset, focus on what they can control, think about the positive, the opportunities, and picture what you want your future to look like in your mind and start focusing on that. You become what you think,” he said.
Temitope Ajayi, an employee experience specialist at AltSchool Africa, emphasized that the event exposes young minds to limitless opportunities. “If you are passionate about something and you love it, please go for it; there is no restriction at all.”
Ajayi also shared three practical paths for pursuing a career and discovering one’s purpose. “Firstly, it is important to know your values—what guides your decision.”
“For me, it is growth, mindset, excellence, and showing up. Secondly, know what you are passionate about, your interests, what you are skilled at, and what you need to brush up to reach that level. Thirdly, getting mentors is important, asking for feedback from people who can guide you based on their experience to limit mistakes on your journey.”
“You don’t have to spend years figuring out what to do. You are here so that you can rest on the shoulders of people who have gone before you and guide you on what you want to become. It’s also important that you go for what you are passionate about.”