Building Confidence in Adult Students: 4 Tips for Case Managers

Published on January 23, 2024

Going back to school as an adult can be intimidating. Even though your clients are starting on a journey that will lead them to a more rewarding career and a better life, it’s normal for them to feel self-doubt. The following four strategies will help with building confidence in students so they can make the most of their job training opportunities.

1. Discuss Growth Mindset

Researcher Carol Dweck discovered that a person’s mindset is the key to success in tackling new challenges. A fixed mindset is the belief that intelligence and abilities are innate qualities that can’t be changed. Students with a fixed mindset may worry that they won’t be smart enough or talented enough to do well in their classes.

A growth mindset is the belief that you can develop your intelligence and abilities with hard work and perseverance. Students with a growth mindset will stick with challenges longer, achieve more and have a greater sense of well-being.

You can encourage a growth mindset in adult students in the following ways:

  • Explain the difference between a growth and a fixed mindset

  • Praise their efforts rather than outcomes

  • Encourage them to challenge fixed mindset thoughts when they feel discouraged

2. Avoid Comparisons

It’s natural for students to compare themselves to others when they go back to school. They may feel like they’re behind or haven’t accomplished as much as they should have. However, these types of comparisons are pointless and can be demoralizing for your clients. Here are some tips for helping your clients avoid negative comparisons:

  • Remind them they’re only seeing the “highlight” reel on social media

  • Encourage them to practice gratitude and think about the positive steps they’re taking to improve their lives

  • Point out how far they’ve come already

3. Tap Into Support Resources

To help your students succeed, make sure they take advantage of all of the resources their program offers. For example, MedCerts provides extensive support resources for students both during their studies and when they start job hunting.

Students are matched with personalized Student Success Advisors who will answer their questions and help them overcome any issues they face during their training courses. They also receive one-on-one career coaching and help to prepare for exams. Encourage your clients to get the most out of their job training program by going beyond their classes to get all of the support they need.

4. Develop a Clear Post Graduation Plan

Many students put so much effort into finishing their studies that they don’t consider how they’re going to transition from school to work life. Your clients will be better prepared for a rewarding career if they start planning in advance.

Networking is important for all professionals. Advise your clients to start networking as soon as they start their classes so they can begin building relationships they can draw on when they start looking for a job.

The career center at your client’s school is the ideal start for developing a post-graduation plan. Many have established pathways for helping students find employment. MedCerts partners with over 1000 businesses to provide job opportunities for their graduates.

Help Your Clients Succeed by Building Their Confidence

Mindset matters in all aspects of life. By building confidence in students, you can help them overcome the obstacles of returning to school and get started on the path to a successful career.

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Written by
Jennifer Kolb
National Director of Workforce Development

As MedCerts National Director of Workforce Development, Jennifer Kolb is responsible for overseeing strategy and business development efforts at MedCerts with an emphasis on the k-career pipeline.

Prior to MedCerts, Jennifer served in several leadership positions at Tallo and Hawkes Learning where she built and lead sales and marketing, new product launches, technology development updates and an entire product relaunch to be ADA compliant.

Jennifer has spent a decade within the workforce industry working with educators, state leaders, business and industry officials, post-secondary institutions and grant organizations from across the country, all with the mission of bettering people's lives. Coming from a long line of educators and with a business-centered mindset, Jen is passionate about student success and cultivating creative strategies for ensuring all talent has access to educational and career-related opportunities.

Jennifer earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Marketing and Psychology with a focus in business management from Clemson University.

Published on January 23, 2024

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Disclaimers:

Our employer-sponsored train-and-hire model is not offered to partners and potential students/employees in Pennsylvania.