Sacred Heart School understands that students will eventually graduate and move out into the world. A unique offering at the school is a Career Development course offered in the fall semester to junior and senior students. The purpose of the course is to explore different career options, help students make a decision on a career direction, help them select a major in college, how to conduct a job search, find internships, set goals, and the importance of networking. The course is taught by Sacred Heart School’s guidance counselor, Patrick Hart.
On Tuesday, students heard from Tim Gust, a 1956 Sacred Heart alum, who has found success in the field of Neuropsychology. Gust, who currently lives in Los Angeles, CA, wanted to talk to students about his life and their career decisions. Gust reminisced a little about his time at Sacred Heart relaying tales about a few of the sisters that used to teach here. “Here at Sacred Heart we are fortunate to have had good teachers. A good teacher really does make the difference. It’s what counts….That’s my thank you to Sacred Heart.”
Gust quickly changed the focus to careers. “Ultimately I want you all to have jobs. How many of you are working now?” Gust then pointed around the room as students responded with their various jobs.” He then asked students what careers they were considering. Students provided a variety of responses: law enforcement, acting, vocal performing, author, medical fields, and architecture.
Gust said, “you have to get into an environment or situation that rewards your particular interest. Without that there is a chance you won’t be successful.” Gust relayed his own personal story of academic success but a struggle in college to succeed. “Your looking at a guy who initially flunked out of college as an engineer.” Gust said he chose his career because of family history and not because of any particular interest. “Had I taken an interest survey or put more thought into my career initially it might have been different.”
Gust turned to the counseling center at UND who helped him with an assessment and ultimately he finished his degree and went onto complete several more. It was during his doctoral studies at UND that Gust started the first career and counseling program at Sacred Heart. “That was something I really enjoyed — and wished I had it as a senior.”
Gust, the founder of the career and counseling program at Sacred Heart, poses with Patrick Hart, the current school counselor and instructor of the Career Development course.[/caption]
Gust, although semi-retired, is still doing part time work for the city of Los Angeles where he helps the city screen possible law enforcement applicants. He mentioned to students the importance of thinking about their career now. “If you end up with a DUI now it will mess you up and hinder your application years down the road. You’ll be looked upon differently.”
When students asked him what the most important tool was for success in life he responded, “Know as much as you can about technology. To be able to use technology well in any field — music, health care, etc. — will advance your career options.”
Gust ended by encouraging students to really consider their future now. “I encourage you to make the most of your life.”