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At the Crossroads of ‘I can,’ ‘I should,’ and ‘I want’

Discover how we can leverage a Japanese framework to guide students toward more targeted pathways.

Updated 12/10/2022
mother using a laptop in kitchen with teenager

Conversations about the future with American students all too often involve the oversimplified and misleading question of “What do you want to be?”, giving the impression that a person simply ends up being something. What if the emphasis shifted from “What do you want to be?” to questions like “What are you passionate about?” “What do you want to give to society?” and “What are you capable of?” 

The Japanese framework of Ikigai can serve as a roadmap to help young people think about and articulate a plan, in terms of what they want, what they can do, and what society needs. Through Ikigai, anyone can understand their ideal state of being along four axes: doing something that you love; doing something the world needs; doing something you are good at; and doing something you can be paid for.

Discover how we can help more students approach Ikigai and give them the tools and resources to explore the wide variety of options available in their journey to successful careers.

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