Interactors and students from Classes 7–12 got an opportunity recently to listen to entrepreneurs, artists and leaders from various fields, interact with career coaches and learn about Rotary’s peace fellowships, RCC, RYLA, youth exchange and New Generations Service Exchange programmes. This they did at the career counselling camps organised by RID 3090 District Interact chair Manik Raj Singla. The district has added 50 new Interact clubs under his leadership and the career couselling initiative trains and provides career guidance for close to 200 Interactors every weekend. “Apart from Rotary knowledge, we also offer them information on careers of their choice, colleges, courses offered in other countries, scholarships and competitive exams,” says Singla.
This year he wants to introduce Interact in semi-rural regions “to help students understand how they can make a difference in their community through Rotary while building a strong career.”
Nitin Kumar from Interact Club of Veer Haqiqat School, Patiala, wants to be an intelligence officer for the Indian Army. “I was asked how I would be able to achieve my dream but had no idea.” In a one-to-one session, he was told about the various courses he should take up to “fulfil my goal. My dream wasn’t just dismissed as a joke, I was told it is achievable. It boosted my confidence and gave me a sense of direction.”
On weekends the Interactors are encouraged to solve psychometric and aptitude tests conducted in their school. Apart from this, Singla is organising counselling sessions for the parents of these Interactors. He stresses that it is important to involve the parents “in the Interact initiative. Only parents can provide the support a child needs to reach his/her full potential. Through our Parents Guidance Programme, we help them understand that not all children are good at academics. Parents should help their child choose a career according to the his/her aptitude, interest and skill.”
“We have never included parents in a career guidance programme till date. This is a great idea,” says Sarla Bhatnagar, the principal of Veer Haqiqat School.