What does educational advice coaching look like?

Discussing study goals with a coach can help expat partners narrow down their choices and to brainstorm options in a world of near limitless opportunities.

Where to start?

“Most expat partners I speak to about study plans have some idea on what skills they would like to develop, but they don’t know whether or where they can find a suitable education to suit their needs,” says coach Mirjam Dikken. “For example, someone might use the opportunity of living in the Netherlands to gain knowledge on greenhouses, or someone located in Asia might be seeking online opportunities to upgrade their medical knowledge.”

Preliminary questions

“In a first call, we explore what the expat partner is thinking of: what has their career and education looked like so far; what skills or knowledge would they like to update / acquire and why; how much time they have to spare, are they looking for online / in-person options; do they want a degree / certificate for career purposes or just the knowledge; which languages would they be able to follow courses in.”

Taking a deep dive

“During the call, it might be established that this person is interested in finding contacts and institutes, or it might become clear this person is in an orientation phase and not sure about getting a full degree or courses in two different health related topics,” continues Mirjam. “I would then research possibilities, using a range of tools. First, I check the well-known institutes, then I deep dive into specific educational institutes. If applicable, I also look into associations / organisations focused on the specific topic because they often offer interesting insights as well.”

Further discussions

After Mirjam presents her detailed findings to the partner, a follow up call will be arranged to discuss the options. “If a further tweak in research is needed, I will update the educational advice,” says Mirjam, adding that when someone is unsure of what they wish to pursue, she will brainstorm ideas with them.

Additional requests

“Sometimes people will have searched for a course themselves and would like to know whether there are other options, so I will find additional choices,” says Mirjam. “In another case, someone had already started the process to apply for an MBA, but they found the application process overwhelming so I stepped in to help get the proper documentation together.”

Photo: Mirjam Dikken (on screen) in discussion with client – edited image

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