Children and teenagers are naturally drawn to new experiences, which may hold the key to assisting them in developing a sense of purpose in life.

Almost every teenager agrees that most of what they learn in high school is irrelevant to their life outside of school or to their future employment. According to one survey, most high school pupils confess to feeling exhaustion and boredom. Research on the future of jobs confirms that 65 per cent of the jobs that today’s high school graduates would have in their lifetime do not yet exist. However, we continue to train them in the same way we trained industrial employees a century ago. According to a study done by Professor William Damon, head of the Stanford Center on Adolescence, only approximately 20% of young people reported leading a purposeful life.

A leading researcher on youth development, Kendall Bronk, defined purpose as having four features; dedicated commitment, personal meaningfulness, goal-directedness, and a vision bigger than oneself. The discovery and development of purpose are inextricably linked to the discovery and development of identity. The question of purpose is a critical matter during adolescent years, and studies prove that youths who pursue purpose have higher life satisfaction and happiness. Another research even suggests that living a purposeful life is associated with better physical health. Young adults who have a sense of meaning in their lives cope better with social media, as they are less likely to seek validation from likes, comments and follows.

Ebenezer Chukwudi Umahi saw the need to educate young people on purpose and life planning and rose to the challenge. Ebenezer is a multi-talented and multi-skilled student of the University of Benin Teaching Hospital. He is a Direct Response Copywriter, 2D/3D Videos, Front-end Web developer, Writer, Medic. Ebenezer, who is currently working as an Admin at Nezer’s Diary and Social Media Manager at Dream Weave Africa Consult, is passionate about helping young discover purpose early.

The project was carried out at Russell International School, Benin City, where he educated over 150 students on the essential role of Life planning in attaining a fulfilling career choice. The project entailed the following activities;

  •         A keynote presentation on the essential role of life planning in attaining a fulfilling career choice to inform the students on the need to discover who they are and their capabilities early to make career decisions that are in line with their purpose
  •         A self-assessment test to evaluate the students on their understanding of what has been taught to ensure comprehension and assimilation
  •         Selection of peer educators to advocate for life plan and career choice development in their respective communities and sphere of influence. This will ensure that the continuity of the good work and exponential results as the student advocates engage their peers

In the course of the project, over 150 students were sensitized to the essential role of life planning in attaining a fulfilling career choice. About 75% of the participants scored above average in the self-assessment test on the Teenage to Purpose and Career Assessment Test. In addition, a good percentage of the students who were present committed to having purposeful living and maximum life accomplishment by early career/life planning.

Ebenezer believes in changing the world one child at a time. You, too, can start where you are with what you have to initiate the change you want to see.

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