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Career decision-making of immigrant young people who are doing well : helping and hindering factors Mathew, Deepak 2019

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 CAREER DECISION-MAKING OF IMMIGRANT YOUNG PEOPLE WHO ARE DOING WELL: HELPING AND HINDERING FACTORS  by  DEEPAK MATHEW   A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF  DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE AND POSTDOCTORAL STUDIES (Counselling Psychology)  THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA (Vancouver)   August 2019  © Deepak Mathew, 2019  ii  The following individuals certify that they have read, and recommend to the Faculty of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies for acceptance, the dissertation entitled:  Career Decision-Making of Immigrant Young People who are Doing Well: Helping and Hindering Factors  submitted by Deepak Mathew in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy in  Counselling Psychology ii   Examining Committee: Dr. William Borgen Supervisor  Dr. Norman Amundson Supervisory Committee Member  Dr. Ishu Ishiyama Supervisory Committee Member Dr. Cay Holbrook University Examiner Dr. George Belliveau University Examiner    iii Abstract Immigrant young people in Canada are making career decisions within the context of a volatile labour market and with contextual barriers and opportunities that are deeply rooted in terms of culture and other sociopolitical and economic factors.  In spite of these challenging circumstances, there are immigrant young people who are doing well.  This study addresses the gap in literature pertaining to identifying contributors to successful career decision-making of immigrant young people.  Using a positive psychology framework, this study aimed to understand the decision-making process of immigrant young people who believe they are doing well with their career decision-making.  Eighteen immigrant young adults who self-defined as doing well with career decision-making participated in an open-ended semi-structured interview based on the enhanced critical incident technique (ECIT).  The ECIT is a well-established qualitative research method and it was used to obtain a description of what helped, hindered or would have helped participants' career decision-making processes.  The results obtained in the form of nine categories of helping and hindering factors along with their wish list focused on three groups of influences, namely personal and interpersonal, experiential and external, and cultural and transitional.  The potential contribution of the study included enhancing empirical literature with regards to successful career decision-making of immigrant young people, expanding career development theory, assisting practitioners in the development of more inclusive tools and counselling interventions, and informing policymakers about the needs of these young Canadians.  Perhaps most importantly, the research will assist immigrant young people and their families by providing examples of how others have made career decisions in the face of personal and evolving economic and sociocultural challenges and opportunities.  iv Lay Summary Making career decisions can be challenging to all, especially for young people who have moved to Canada in their teens.  Earlier research has shown that in spite of the difficulties immigrant youth face, some are successful with career decision-making.  Since this aspect was not researched before and not much was known about the factors that contribute to immigrant young people doing well, this study intended to investigate this more elaborately.  With the help of open-ended interview questions, eighteen immigrant young people, who identified themselves as doing well, were asked about factors that helped and hindered their career decision-making along with what they wished would have helped.  The participants identified several personal, interpersonal, external, cultural, and transitional factors as having influenced their career decision-making.  These findings are expected to help career counsellors and practitioners, researchers, and policy makers to target their work and practice based on the identified factors.    v Preface This dissertation is the original and unpublished work of the author Deepak Mathew.  Data collection and data analysis were conducted independently with the approval of the University of British Columbia Behavioural Research Ethics Board (BREB), under certificate number: H15-01935 vi  Table of Contents Abstract .......................................................................................................................................... iii Lay Summary ................................................................................................................................. iv Preface............................................................................................................................................. v Table of Contents ........................................................................................................................... vi List of Tables ................................................................................................................................. ix Acknowledgements ......................................................................................................................... x Dedication ..................................................................................................................................... xii Chapter One: Introduction .............................................................................................................. 1 The Problem ........................................................................................................................ 2 Rationale for the Study ....................................................................................................... 7 Purpose of the Study ........................................................................................................... 9 Chapter Two: Review of the Literature ........................................................................................ 10 Career Decision-making ................................................................................................... 16 Career Success .................................................................................................................. 20 Career Theories ................................................................................................................. 24 Immigrant Career Development ....................................................................................... 29 Career Development of Youth .......................................................................................... 36 Relational Context of Career Decision-making ................................................................ 41 Conclusion ........................................................................................................................ 45 Chapter Three: Methodology ........................................................................................................ 46 The Study Design .............................................................................................................. 46 The Rationale for the Study Design .................................................................................. 47 The Evolution of ECIT ..................................................................................................... 49 The beginnings of CIT. ......................................................................................... 49  vii The continued adaptations of CIT......................................................................... 50 CIT and counselling psychology. ......................................................................... 53 Philosophical and Methodological Assumptions .............................................................. 55 Steps of Conducting CIT Research ................................................................................... 58 Trustworthiness of CIT ..................................................................................................... 59 Methodological Procedures for The Current Study .......................................................... 61 Overall description of the five steps. .................................................................... 61 Description of the sample. .................................................................................... 64 Inclusion criteria. .................................................................................................. 70 Participant recruitment. ......................................................................................... 70 Participant screening. ............................................................................................ 71 Data collection procedures. ................................................................................... 72 Data analysis procedures....................................................................................... 76 Conclusion ........................................................................................................................ 83 Chapter Four: Results ................................................................................................................... 85 Overview of Results .......................................................................................................... 85 The Contextual Results ..................................................................................................... 85 What does career mean? ....................................................................................... 86 What does doing well mean? ................................................................................ 92 Changes in doing well. .......................................................................................... 98 Critical Incident and Wish List Categories ..................................................................... 101 Personal qualities. ............................................................................................... 102 Family members/situation. .................................................................................. 110 Significant others (outside family)...................................................................... 114 Experience/training. ............................................................................................ 117 External/serendipitous factors. ............................................................................ 123 Cultural/immigration-related experience. ........................................................... 126 Network/information/resources. ......................................................................... 128 Finance. ............................................................................................................... 131 Language. ............................................................................................................ 133 Scaling Results ................................................................................................................ 136  viii Answers to the scaling question. ......................................................................... 136 Rationale for the answers to the scaling question. .............................................. 137 Rationale for the difference in ratings. ............................................................... 144 Conclusion ...................................................................................................................... 147 Chapter Five: Discussion ............................................................................................................ 149 The Contextual Results ................................................................................................... 149 What does career mean? ..................................................................................... 149 What does doing well mean? .............................................................................. 157 Critical Incident and Wish List Categories ..................................................................... 161 Personal and Interpersonal Influences. ............................................................... 161 Experiential and External Influences. ................................................................. 166 Cultural and Transitional Influences ................................................................... 171 Integrating Contextual Results with ECIT and Wish List Categories ............................ 175 Limitations of the Study.................................................................................................. 177 Implications for Future Research .................................................................................... 181 Methodological recommendations. ..................................................................... 182 Diverse populations and applications. ................................................................ 183 Implications for Theory .................................................................................................. 184 Implications for Practice and Policy (with Recommendations) ..................................... 186 Conclusion ...................................................................................................................... 190 References ................................................................................................................................... 192 Appendices .................................................................................................................................. 235 Appendix A: Recruitment Poster .................................................................................... 235 Appendix B: Screening Questions .................................................................................. 236 Appendix C: Consent Form ............................................................................................ 237 Appendix D: Interview Guide ......................................................................................... 240   ix List of Tables Table 1:  Summary of Basic Demographic Data .......................................................................... 67 Table 2:  Themes Related to What Career Means ........................................................................ 87 Table 3:  Themes Related to What Doing Well Means ................................................................ 93 Table 4:  Participant Response to “Have you Always Done Well with Career Decision-Making”?............................................................................................................................................... 98 Table 5:  Themes Related to “What Changes Facilitated Doing Well with Career Decision-Making?”............................................................................................................................... 99 Table 6:  Categories of Critical Incidents (Helping and Hindering) and Wish List Items ......... 103 Table 7:  Themes from the Scaling Question.............................................................................. 138 Table 8:  Participant Change in Ratings on the Scaling Question .............................................. 145  x Acknowledgements I would like to express my deep gratitude and would like to acknowledge the unwavering support of my supervisor Dr. Bill Borgen, who trusted my capacity to do well with my academic pursuit in Canada. Dr. Borgen has also immensely contributed towards my learning and increasing my confidence as a researcher.  I am thankful to my committee members Dr. Norm Amundson and Dr. Ishu Ishiyama for sharing their knowledge and providing very valuable feedback and insights for this dissertation. I am extremely thankful to Dr. Amundson for facilitating my exposure to the field of career development and the myriad of opportunities in the area of career counselling. I would like to extend my heartfelt gratitude to Dr. Ishiyama for challenging me to think ‘out of the box’ and reassuring me on my career journey as a new immigrant to Canada. I would like to specially thank Dr. Marla Buchanan, Dr. Lee Butterfield, and Dr. Alanaise Goodwill for being very generous with their helpful suggestions and encouragement in supporting me with this project. I am also grateful to my fellow PhD students in the program – Ada, Jesse, Kevin, Lynn, and Maria – who have journeyed together with me and have constantly supported me in moving towards completing my doctoral program. A sincere thanks to Annie Soni for proofreading this manuscript.  Most importantly, my deepest gratitude goes to my wife, Priskilla Oommen for her love, care, and kindness that made this journey enjoyable and fulfilling. I am also very thankful to my parents, my extended family, and my church – Kerala Christian Fellowship – for their prayers and constant encouragement.   xi My appreciation and thanks are due to the eighteen participants in the study who were willing to share their experiences with me, contributing towards the completion of this dissertation.  xii Dedication                   To my wife, Priskilla Oommen 1 Chapter One: Introduction Career development is integrally tied to career decision-making.  Some decisions have the potential to significantly influence the course of one’s career.  Hence, there is often anxiety associated with decision-making, especially when the outcome of the decision is perceived to impact one’s vocational life.  Both decision-making and indecision are popular topics of research in vocational literature (Gati et al., 2011; Miller & Rottinghaus, 2014).  In fact, career decision-making process is one of the most researched topics in career research (Gati et al., 2011).  While the complexity of career decision-making can be onerous for people of all ages, young adults particularly find it challenging to make decisions that are tied to their life and meaning (Okubo, Yeh, Lin, Fujita, & Shea, 2007).  One particular developmental challenge for adolescents and young adults is to witness and participate in the formation of their own identity (Arnett, 2000; Erikson, 1950).  This process is likely to consolidate in providing the individual with a sense of meaning and purpose for life.  However, identity development is beset with the stress of making choices about life-goals, relationships, and educational and occupational commitments (Côté, 2002).  Moreover, the demands associated with the social contexts of young adults, exert pressure on them to make identity commitments, revise them, and also to accelerate this process (Schwartz, Zamboanga, Meca, & Ritchie, 2012).  Aspects of culture and cross-ethnic diversity issues also influence the identity development process of young adults (Schwartz, 2001). The career decision-making process for young adults can be even more challenging when the context in which these decisions are being made is fluid and ever changing.  The element of uncertainty increases significantly when young adults have to make decisions about occupational roles even before some of these roles are not clearly defined in the job market.  Moreover, the  2 stress associated with preparing themselves for the future, through pursuing educational pathways and certification requirements can be overwhelming, especially when the outcome of this arduous process cannot be gauged. An added layer of stress can come from being a member of a minority group, for whom resources and opportunities may be limited.  Young immigrants to Canada are at the intersection of multiple cultures and find themselves enmeshed in multiple transitions.  Most of the transitions that come their way are involuntary, and hence there is very little readiness for dealing with the associated adjustments.  However, many immigrant young people in Canada are doing well with their careers (Krahn & Taylor, 2005).  The variety of factors that play into creating successful outcomes need to be explored, since not much attention has been paid to this aspect in career literature.  Since career is a meaningful enterprise in people’s lives, there could be a great contribution to career literature, if the personal meaning associated with career decision-making success is shared with other people who are undergoing a similar transition. Knowing what helps and hinders career development of young immigrants to Canada is beneficial both from a systemic perspective and also from an intervention standpoint.  The findings can also enhance our theoretical understanding of career decision-making of immigrant young adults.  Results of the study will also inform career practitioners and stimulate more research in this area. The Problem There is a global shift in the nature of occupational and job opportunities for people of all ages.  These changes are a result of globalization, competition, increased mobility of individuals and families, the transformation to a technology and knowledge-based economy, the increased  3 diversity of workers, and the rise of social change movements (e.g., human rights, environmentalism, mass migration/immigration).  The landscape of the world of work in Western industrialized economies has changed drastically.  Over the past two decades there has been an increase in volatility in work and work opportunities.  Consequently, there is a need for innovation, action, and commitment by governments, employees, employers, and citizens. Similarly, the need for innovation in career development services to support people’s needs in the face of these ongoing social and employment related changes is greater than ever (Maranda & Comeau, 2000; Riverin-Simard, 2000; Savickas, 2011b).   The impact of global change is strongly felt in the Canadian job market.  The Canadian worker is caught in the middle of these hard-hitting developments in the world of work.  With greater technological advancement and an increased engagement with knowledge-based economy, traditional methods of approaching the job market might not work well for job seekers, those who are making career decisions, or even for those undergoing career transitions.  These changes in the economic and social landscape challenge the career development opportunities of all Canadians (Borgen & Hiebert, 2006), and especially those who are younger (Foster, 2012).  One of the less anticipated consequences of these changes is a shift in the decision-making process of job seekers (Ng, Schweitzer, & Lyons, 2010).  Most workers are not prepared for navigating through the rapidly changing and highly uncertain world of work.  Also, the labour market is less sensitive to the needs of groups that may be vulnerable and marginalized (Abele & Delic, 2014).  One such group affected is immigrant young adults (Wilkinson, 2008).  The impact of the modern economic, political, and social transformations has not worked well to favour young immigrants in Canada.  Immigrant young people witness the difficulties faced by their parents in Canada, which in turn is believed to have an effect on their career development.  4 This is especially more relevant for immigrants who came as adolescents, who are referred to as the 1.5 generation (Shields & Lujan, 2018). This is because they did not come to Canada as adults to be considered first generation immigrants and they are not fully second generation because they were not born in Canada.  Previous studies of immigrants to Canada reveal that those who immigrated before they were 10-12 years of age share experiences that are more similar to youth born in Canada, compared with those who moved after 10-12 years of age (Cheung, Chudek, & Heine, 2011). In the Canadian context, the contribution of immigrants to the economic, social, and cultural development of the nation stands out as prominent.  Immigrants represent a demographic shift in Canada, since 60% of newcomers are below 30 years of age (Citizenship & Immigration Canada, 2010).  As of 2008, there is a reported increase of 25% with regards to immigrant youth arriving in Canada.  About 80% of these young people coming to Canada are from visible minority groups (Shakya, Khanlou, & Gonsalves, 2010).  While immigration accounted for more than one half of Canada's population growth between 1996 and 2001 (Statistics Canada, 2003), By 2030, nearly all population growth in Canada will be from immigration (Statistics Canada, 2008) and it is estimated that by 2036 immigrants will comprise nearly 30% of the population (Block & Galabuzi, 2011; Statistics Canada, 2017).  With regards to immigrant youth, in 2016, 27% of all youth in Canada (15 to 34 years) identified themselves as a member of a visible minority group, compared with 13% in 1996 (Statistics Canada, 2018).  Also, about 40% of youth in Canada were first generation immigrants or who had at least one parent who is an immigrant (second generation).  This statistics changes to 75% and 69% when considering the cities of Toronto and Vancouver respectively (Statistics Canada, 2018).  Amidst this significant contribution of immigrant youth towards population  5 growth in Canada, young immigrants to Canada are expected to significantly contribute to the growth of the Canadian economy (Reitz, Curtis, & Elrick, 2014).  However, this expectation will be met only if some of the prevailing challenges faced by this group is addressed, which also has a direct bearing on the career development process of immigrant youth.  For the current study, the term youth and young adults are used interchangeably, and considers age 35 to be the upper limit of identifying this population.  In a recent publication from Statistics Canada (2018), individuals between the age of 15 to 34 were considered youth.  Unemployment and underemployment levels among immigrants are higher than the national average (Wilkinson, 2008).  This has a direct impact on their children.  Immigrant youth are, therefore, more likely to come from lower-income households (Shakya et al., 2010). Currently, there is high rate of poverty among immigrant youth in Canada due to their family circumstance, increased barriers in finding employment and the difficulty in attaining higher education (National Council of Welfare, 2012; Shields & Lujan, 2018).  The unemployment rate for immigrant youth is almost twice the rate of those youth born in Canada (Wilkinson, 2008), with some improvement more recently, but the gap continues to be significant (Yssaad & Fields, 2018). The vocational challenges faced by immigrant young adults can be fully appreciated only in the context of how their parents themselves are navigating the transitional process. Immigration policy in Canada has provided opportunities for people from all over the world to explore possibilities of greater fulfillment for themselves and their families in Canada.  However, new immigrants face several hardships once they arrive and begin searching for jobs in Canada.  The Canadian labour market has not been very friendly to skilled immigrants in helping them realize their vocational dreams.  Many immigrants find it extremely difficult to get those  6 professional jobs or high skilled jobs which they practiced in their home country (Reitz, 2013).  The employment rate for immigrants who are university educated was only 68.4% (landed five years or less) as compared to 90.9 % for their native-born counterparts (Statistics Canada, 2013), though this gap is more recently found to be shrinking (Yssaad & Fields, 2018). Hence, when new immigrants to Canada are faced with obstacles in making the kind of progress they expected, it is likely to significantly affect their vocational identity and overall well-being.  Unemployment and underemployment are identified as factors that have an effect on an individual’s mental health post-migration (Kirmayer et al., 2011).  Also, immigrants sometimes have to face discrimination due to their ethnicity, race, religion, and language (Westwood & Ishiyama, 1991).  Nangia (2013), using data from the general social survey conducted in 2009 shows that immigrants have a significantly higher chance of facing discrimination than non-immigrants and 56.3% of immigrants face discrimination in the work force.  The prevalence of discrimination in the labour market was demonstrated by Oreopoulus (2011) through a field experiment using 13,000 resumes that were created to both represent typical characteristics of immigrants such as foreign sounding names, international education, international work experience and typical English names, with Canadian education and experience.  Of the many findings the one that stood out was that resumes with English names, Canadian education and Canadian experience were three times more likely to be called for an interview.  Similarly, immigrant youth, especially from visible minority groups, also face racism and discrimination, which can lead to experiences of social isolation, decreased sense of belonging, low self- esteem, anxiety, stress and depression (Shakya et al., 2010).   Many newcomers to Canada are overwhelmed with the change and their career identities as well as their self-identities are negatively impacted.  Many skilled immigrants settle for  7 survival jobs and continue to take up jobs that are below their potential and skills.  This is likely to impact their overall health and most specifically mental health (Robert & Gilkinson, 2012). Nevertheless, many immigrant young adults do well in spite of the challenges (Motti-Stefanidi, Berry, Chryssochoou, Sam, & Phinney, 2012).  Recent advances in career development theory and practice question traditional assumptions about access to occupations, but little is known about the experience of immigrant young adults who self-define as doing well in making career decisions in the face of rapidly changing employment opportunities and contextual barriers that are rooted in culture and other socio-political and economic issues.  Rationale for the Study Research in the area of career development of immigrant young adults, points to evidence that reveal how some immigrant youths are doing well with their career (Krahn & Taylor, 2005; Motti-Stefanidi, et al., 2012), in spite of multiple barriers.  With respect to making use of educational opportunities and aspirations about the future, they do better than young people who were born in Canada (Finnie & Mueller, 2010; Motti-Stefanidi et al., 2012).  However, not much is known with regards to how young immigrants who are doing well, are able to overcome the barriers that are commonly faced by similar people.  Immigrant young people as a group generally are under studied (Lauer, Wilkinson, Yan, Sin, & Tsang, 2012; Schellenberg & Maheux, 2007), and the experience of those who see themselves as doing well with their career decisions has not been investigated.  This study aims to fill this gap with respect to the career development. According to Jensen (2011), immigrant youth are exposed to multiple cultural settings that impact the formation of their identities as well as their facility for career decision-making.  8 Besides having to deal with the challenges of cultural transitions and language barriers, and its effect on their personal selves, young immigrants in Canada also find it difficult to acquire the skill sets and training that is necessary to successfully navigate their way through the challenges of the job market (Anisef & Kilbride, 2003; Britten, Borgen, & Wiggins, 2012).  There are also family expectations and values that are often built into their cultural contexts that make career decision making more than an autonomous enterprise (Marshall, Stewart, Popadiuk, & Lawrence, 2013). The challenge of finding their place in the world of work for immigrant young adults, given the complexities of personal, social, ethnic, and economic influences, is not yet completely understood.  Moreover, there is a dearth of research that uses qualitative methods to explore the lived experiences of career decision-making among young adults who are living at an intersection of multiple cultures (Britten, 2014; Britten & Borgen, 2010; Britten, Borgen, & Wiggins, 2012).  Therefore, the question remains as to what we can gather from the decision-making stories of young adults who are engrossed in life designing – a term referring to a broadened perspective on career, wherein all spheres of a person’s life are considered (Blustein, 2011; Savickas et al., 2009).  The decision-making process cannot be exclusive to work life.  Events or transitions experienced in one area of a person’s life impact other areas as well (Borgen, Butterfield, & Amundson, 2010).  Thus, the impact of non-work-related experiences on a person’s life path become increasingly important.  This is especially true when work opportunities are more precarious or uncertain (Cranford, Vosko, & Zukewich, 2003; Peavy, 2004). Theoretical frameworks that may be applied to studying career decision of immigrant young people include the relational approach (Schultheiss, Watts, Sterland, & O’Neill, 2011), the  9 cultural formulation approach (Arthur & Popadiuk, 2010), a culture-infused career counselling model (Arthur & Collins, 2010), the cultural accommodation model of counselling (Leong, 2011), the career counselling with underserved populations model (Pope, 2011), the systems theory framework (McMahon, 2005), and the cultural preparedness model (Arulmani, 2012) . While these approaches capture some of the contextual influences on career decision making, the understanding of what helps and hinders decision making – especially for young adults who self-define as doing well – while negotiating the multiplicity of cultural forces, has yet to be investigated.  The richness of their experiences – both positive and negative – in terms of how they are constructing their lives through career decision-making process (Richardson, 2012) is yet to be explored. Purpose of the Study The purpose of this study was to better understand the career decision-making processes of immigrant young people who self-define as doing well with their career decision-making.  The aim of the study was to investigate what helps and hinders them in making these decisions, acknowledging the context of their lived experience wherein these decisions are made. This study will extend our understanding of cultural and socio-political influences on career development processes for immigrant young people, who are doing well with their careers.  Also, the findings of the study will assist practitioners in the development of more inclusive tools and counselling interventions for immigrant youth.  The study is also expected to inform policy makers about the needs of these young Canadians.  Perhaps most importantly, the research will assist immigrant young adults and their families through providing examples of how others have made career decisions in the face of personal and evolving economic and socio-cultural challenges and opportunities.  10 Chapter Two: Review of the Literature This chapter reviews literature related to career development and career decision-making, as it applies to immigrant youth.  Beginning with an overview of how career has been conceptualized over the years along with the recent definitions and historical changes, literature in the area of career decision-making will be discussed.  Next, the meaning of career success will be reviewed.  Next, theories of career development will be reviewed with greater attention to theories that focus on contextual and cultural aspects of career development.  After looking at immigrant career development literature, career development of youth will be reviewed focusing on the multiple transitions that influence both identity and career development.  Finally, the role of family, friends, and significant others in career decision-making will be discussed, focusing on the relational context of career development.  Overview of Career Conceptualization Hall’s (1976, p. 4) definition of career is one of the earliest formal definitions, where career is explained as “the individually-perceived sequence of attitudes and behaviors associated with work-related experiences and activities over the span of a person’s life.” This definition refers to the accumulation and integration of experiences and the notion that career as a life-long process.  More recently, Arthur, Hall, and Lawrence (1989, p. 8) defined career as “the evolving sequence of a person’s work experiences over time”.  In both of the above definitions the notion of experience and the dimension of time is emphasized.  Other definitions of career also include themes related to work roles and work-related positions (Adamson, Doherty, & Viney, 1998; Super, 1980).  Career approaches that utilize constructionist perspectives have alluded to the planned action of the individual in terms of goal directedness (e.g., Young, Vallach, & Collin, 2002.  However, more recently some have rejected the idea that career has fixed properties and  11 that strategic planning is inherent in career decision-making.  Rather, they believe career is conceptualized as a function of an individual narrative or discourse constructed in the process of verbalizing what career means (Coupland, 2004).  A contemporary conceptualization of career helps better understand career development and career decision-making of immigrant young adults.  Career, presently is discussed in a more holistic and all-encompassing way compared to how it was referred to a few decades ago.  This is a reflection of the global changes in almost every sphere of human life.  For successful management of career, keeping up with the changes is inevitable.  The changes that presently influence human life are very rapid and “brings new demands, conflicts, and stress as people cope with new jobs, new residences, new spouses and children, and new colleagues” (Cornish, 2004, p. 12).  The changing social contexts, triggered by major transformations in economic and political systems at a global level, have contributed to changes in the role and identity of workers.  Consequently, the recent understanding of career does not limit itself to “linear”, “progressive”, or even identifiable occupations (Inkson, 2015).  It need not be seen in the context of work and employment alone.  Instead, the emphasis is on “identity”, “personal meaning”, and career is often described as being “boundariless” and “protean” (Arthur, 1994; Hall, 2004; Miller & Rottinghaus, 2014; Zikic, Bonache, & Cerdin, 2010).  Thus, career involves a process of discovery and many theorists attempt to explain career with the help of metaphors rather than standard definitions.  Some of the metaphors include ‘journey’, ‘path’, ‘story’, ‘cycle’ (Amundson, 1998; Inkson & Amundson, 2002).  The creation of metaphors facilitates new and different ways of thinking about careers.  The images, however, might also restrict the individual to think about their lives in stereotypical ways (Inkson, 2004).  12 The conceptualization of career in the twenty-first century has a lot in common with the themes of positive psychology literature.  These themes highlight how work provides purpose and meaning to the individual and emphasizes the strengths and positive emotions that are associated with career (Chen, 2001; Dik, Byrne, & Steger, 2013; Harzer & Ruch, 2013; Kahn & Fellows, 2013).  Some of the qualities include optimism, self-confidence, inner strength, perseverance, faith, and values – characteristics that are now considered integral to career development (Savickas, 2003).  Other strength-based qualities discussed along with career include hope, courage, resilience, integrity, religious orientation, and wellbeing.  (Duffy & Dik, 2009; Hirschi, Abessolo, Froidevaux, 2015; Lyons, Schweitzer, & Ng, 2015; Niles, Amundson, & Neault, 2011; Safta, 2015).  When career is understood from the positive psychology framework, the benefits of career gets articulated in terms of happiness, fulfilment, and meaning.  However, it may not be accurate to assume that the emergence of positive psychology influenced career conceptualization since there is more reason to believe that the strength-based taxonomy in career counselling has informed the field of positive psychology (Savickas, 2003).  Robitschek & Woodson (2006) has emphasized the strength and wellness perspective in vocational psychology and its contribution to the field of counselling psychology. While work and career have been found to give meaning to people’s existence (Morin & Dassa, 2006; Wrzesniewski, 2003), the underlying message that some constructivist approaches have proposed is that individuals are fully and often exclusively responsible for designing their life/career.  This implies that meaning-making through vocational endeavours is a function of personal agency.  The agentic function of meaning-making is particularly pronounced due to the complexity of the affluent societies in the Western world.  (Bauman, 2000; Guichard, Pouyaud, de Calan, & Dumora, 2012).  However, for people who have moved to the West in their teens or  13 as an adult, might not have the mindset, experience, or skills to use the standardized or established reference for meaning-making, which proponents of personal agency often take for granted.  Hence, they might have to depend on their cultural heritage to achieve a sense of meaning while making their initial interaction with the world of work in a foreign country.  According to Leong and Wong (2003), Western theories of vocational psychology fail to address this and other aspects of the orientations that are significant for people from other cultures in the conceptualization of career.  When meaningfulness and purpose are attached to the notion of career, the idea of career described as a calling or a sense of vocation cannot be undermined.  They are associated with the Protestant and Puritan influence that goes back to 17th Century England, which soon found its way to the United States of America (Dik & Duffy, 2009).  Though this was replaced by a more psychology and organization-based definitions, there has been a call to revive the constructs of calling and vocation in understanding career development (Hall & Chandler, 2005).  In their attempt to define calling and vocation based on empirical accounts, Dik and Duffy (2009) have identified the similarity between calling and vocation, while noting the difference.  The similarity lies in how both the constructs are tied to meaningfulness and purpose related to “other-oriented values” (p. 428), while only in calling the motivation towards work emanates from outside of oneself.  Closely related to calling and vocation, but different enough to warrant attention by itself is the construct of passion.  Several studies have focussed on the relationship between work and passion (Forest, Mageau, Sarrazin, & Morin, 2011; Vallerand, & Verner-Filion, 2013), and there is some overlap in terms of the understanding of career from the positive psychology framework.  For example, the reference to happiness and self-growth connected to getting involved in  14 activities that are loved and desirable has been a theme in positive psychology (Philippe, Vallerand, & Lavigne, 2009).  Passion represents the strong proclivity towards those activities that people like to engage in and are willing to invest their time and energy (Vallerand et al., 2003).  Hence, passion and identity have some things in common, especially from a career development perspective such as self-defining oneself with respect to what one loves to do (Vallerand et al., 2003). Career decision-making is no longer focused only on one decision that characterized school-to-work transition.  Instead, career represents the various choices that individuals make over their entire life-span (Fouad & Bynner, 2008).  Moreover, there are hardly any limits placed on the conception of career with regards to what qualifies as career and how career-related activities can be undertaken (Inkson, 2006).  The flexibility in terms of necessary adaptations and openness for mobility across subjective and objective boundaries are identifiable markers of present-day career conception.  Hence, the majority of twenty-first century career interventions target the agency and adaptability of the individual in the face of ever-changing and ambiguous environments.  Also, career theorists agree that there is no right way of making a career.  Every person has a unique career, which include diverse experiences – some of which are in line with one’s expectations and others are a matter of chance.  Each of these experiences contributes towards the uniqueness of individual lives.  The conceptualization of career may thus be understood to reflect a shift from the earlier concentration of what career is to an increasing interest in what career does and what career provides.  Hence, fulfilment, meaning and identity has become inseparable from the meaning of career.  Another shift that is noticed is an increased appreciation for the use of qualitative research methods in studying career development (Blustein, Kenna, Murphy, DeVoy, &  15 DeWine, 2005).  Thus, with multiple frameworks to investigate career development for diverse populations, the very nature of what career means has been available for examination and critique. Recently more career theories and career-related interventions are examining career from a multicultural perspective (Fouad et al., 2008; Leong & Flores, 2015; Miller & Kerlow-Myers, 2009) and there is a greater acceptance of approaches across different epistemological positions.  From a predominantly post-positivistic outlook, career theories in the recent past have strived towards integrating objectivist and constructivist approaches in explaining career-related behaviours (Chen, 2003; Savickas, 2001).  This is evident both in scholarly literature (Stead, 2004) as well as in practice in the field of counselling psychology (Arthur & McMahon, 2005).  While there continues to be an interest in identifying specific aspects of cultural differences (Miller, & Kerlow-Myers, 2009), the interaction between the individual, cultural influences, and environmental and contextual factors have been explored and incorporated in career literature (Arthur & McMahon, 2005).  When environmental and contextual variables such as ethnicity and gender are taken into account along with personal and cultural values, the conceptualization of career becomes richer and it opens the possibility of intervening at multiple levels, based on the need of the individual client making the career decision. While much attention has been paid in the past on the ‘fit’ between the person and the work environment, contemporary career theorists and practitioners are interested in exploring the role of contextual factors in career development (Richardson, 2012; Young et al., 2002).  This awareness of context and how it interacts with the self is expected to reveal more about one’s career than identifying the fit between a person and a job.  The focus is not on what fits.  It is on what are the barriers, obstacles, and resources that have to be navigated in one’s career journey.   16 Thus, social forces that facilitate or limit one’s opportunities have made its way into the career discourse. Another distinguishing feature of the contemporary conceptualization of career is that it is not concentrated on a limited time range.  The decision-making process is continuous and each phase of life is believed to have contributed something to the ongoing career development of the individual.  Hence, the preferred approach is to not merely address the immediate academic of occupational concern, but to aim for a holistic life-long and life-wide development of the young adult, which includes aspects of physical, emotional, social, and spiritual well-being (Hiebert, 2002).  Career Decision-making  Making career decisions represent a significant life event and for most people it is a challenging task.  Career decisions are influenced by several factors such as the nature, quality and amount of information available, the inherent uncertainty of the outcome, emotional factors that influence decision-making, the extent of compromise that has to be made, social and cultural barriers, and financial implications (Gati & Levin, 2014; Greenbank & Hepworth, 2008).  Career decisions also influence many other life decisions and have significant consequences – some anticipated and some unanticipated.  Since career decision-making is a complex process and the decisions have to be made in a world of change, unpredictability, and uncertainty, the process of making choices and selecting alternatives happens in multiple stages and often in a recursive manner (Gati & Tal, 2008).  Moreover, the unfamiliarity with engaging in career decisions – career decisions are mostly made when there is a pressing need – contributes to the challenge of engaging in the career decision-making process.  Before a decision can be made, the individual must have access to relevant information about the self and the environment.  Contextual factors  17 determine the extent to which this is information is available and how much of the available information can be effectively used for making choices. One of the earliest emphasis with regards to career decision-making has been on personal qualities, strengths, and values.  Frank Parsons (1909) was one of the first to advocate the integration of strengths and values in the process of making a “wise choice of a vocation” (p. 5). This call to highlight the role of individual positive characteristics gained momentum with the emergence of positive psychology and has impacted decision-making discourse in counselling psychology literature and more specifically vocational psychology research (Dik et al., 2015; Lopez et al., 2006; Seligman, 2002).  When examining from general personality theories, conscientiousness as defined in the big five personality theory has been consistently found to predict career success and career development (John, Donahue, & Kentle, 1991; Katic, Ivanisevic, Grubic-Nesic, & Penezic, 2018).  Other broad factors linked to personal characteristics that has been found to have a positive impact on career planning and decision-making include career adaptability, career optimism, and perceived knowledge (Rottinghaus, Day, & Borgen, 2005).  For young adults, interpersonal factors associated with parental support have also been identified along with personal factors in career decision-making (Garcia, Restubog, Bordia, Bordia, & Roxas, 2015). Most models of career decision making emphasize a rational approach, wherein the decision-maker is expected to weigh pros and cons and decide based on some analytic work.  However, there are other models that minimize the role of cognition in decision-making and instead support the role of emotions and intuitions in career decision-making.  More recently career literature identifies uncertainty as integral to the career decision-making (Trevor‐Roberts, 2006).  Many career theories also explicitly factor in the significance of uncertainty in career  18 decision-making (e.g., Bird, Gunz, & Arthur, 2002; Drodge, 2002; Gelatt, 1989; Krumboltz & Levin, 2004; Mitchell, Levin & Krumboltz, 1999; Pryor & Bright, 2003).  The source of the uncertainty can vary and may include unexpected life circumstances (Adamson et al., 1998), uncontrollable events or situations that may be at the individual level or at a large-scale societal level (Duffy & Dik, 2009), or the unpredictability of the financial market that challenges the stability of the economy with its natural effect on employment (Bird et al., 2002).  The models of career decision-making that factor into uncertainty are contrasted with the ones that exclusively rely on a rational approach. One of the rational models, which is relevant for the career decision-making of immigrant youth is the cognitive information processing model (CIP).  This model emphasizes the intentional and purposeful application of cognitive processes involved in vocational problem solving (Sampson, Reardon, Peterson, & Lenz, 2004).  Since individuals who are making the decision needs to be deliberate in applying their thoughts and cognitive processes, they ought to be sufficiently resourced and ready to participate in the process.  The readiness must be at a level sufficient enough to overcome the complexity of the information that has to be waded through during this process.  In CIP individuals making the decision to identify a gap with regards to where they are and where they want to be.  There are several cognitive skills that will aid decision-making.  One such skill is analyzing, which involves examining the two knowledge bases that are available to the client – knowledge of the self and knowledge about the options in the world of work.   When looking at career decision-making of immigrants, some of the traditional understanding of careers might apply only in a limited way.  For example, the traditional approach to career assumes people to have access to resources, and career counselling is seen as  19 a process of helping them find a field of work that best fits their personality.  With many immigrants, we may not be able make assumptions about available resources (Greenbank & Hepworth, 2008).  In fact, there are hardly any assumptions we can make with regards to what an immigrant brings to the new country.  Almost all researchers in the field agree that immigrants do not constitute a homogenous group (Schultheiss & Davis, 2015) and there are multiple barriers to overcome in their career development process (Doherty, 2013).  This calls for a change in perspective with regards to career decision-making of immigrants and ethnic minorities.  Moreover, it would not be appropriate to focus on the career development of immigrants only from the point of assisting them to integrate with the host culture.  Rather, examining their life-journey as a whole with emphasis on their past career decisions along with their present considerations and future aspirations is needed for understanding their career pathway.  However, not much research has focused on the processes related to the decision to emigrate and linking this process to the various aspects of career decision-making in the host country.  Also, research in this field is relatively new, spanning less than three decades (Bhagat & London, 1999), with many of the studies being reported from the field of human resource management.  Integrating the findings from the fields of management studies and organizational behaviour with a counselling psychology perspective regarding career development offers the possibility of applying knowledge to counselling interventions. Career decision-making cannot be separated from other life decisions.  They converge in a way so as to reciprocally determine the course of life and career.  Consequently, when decision-making is thwarted in one’s life due to contextual factors, career decision-making is negatively impacted.  Also, career conceptualization in the twenty-first century underscores decision-making in the context of limited alternatives and unexpected life circumstances  20 (Adamson et al., 1998; Blustein, McWhirter, & Perry, 2005; Duffy & Dik, 2009).  The extent to which personal volition and control can be exercised in career decision-making is grossly overestimated in traditional career theories and several models of career counselling practice.  Bluestein et al.  (2005) argues for accounting life circumstances, especially the negative ones, which determine how much volition can be used in career decision-making.  Thus “uncontrollable situations, events, and conditions that occur at an individual and societal level” (Duffy & Dik, 2009, p. 33) has a significant bearing in career decision-making.  These events may be associated with personal development, constraints and opportunities provided by the environment, and unexpected life circumstances affecting career decision-making.  The focus on external/contextual situations with respect to career decision-making is an identifying mark of modern career development approaches. Career Success From a pragmatic standpoint, there is an expectation that an individual engaged in career-related activities will experience some success.  Also, career interventions and counselling aim to increase the probability of success.  It may also be argued that the different theories and models of career development not only explain career development and decision-making but provide a guideline for improving the chance of career success (Heslin, 2005).  Although there is some overlap between the conceptualization of career and how career success is discussed, there are also some differences.  The key difference is with regards to how the material and non-material features of career and career success are emphasized.  While career is often described with reference to non-material features such as accumulated experiences, identity, meaning, and purpose, career success invariably addresses more materialistic and tangible benefits such as income, money, and position along with other privileges including access to opportunities, social  21 status, and more desirable lifestyles (e.g., residence, hobbies, entertainment, and vacations).  Though these differences are not completely exclusive, they are more representative of how it is presented in the literature (see Ishak, 2015).  However, more recently, career success is described as encompassing both personal meaning-based elements and the more socially identifiable markers in separating objective success from subjective success (Afiouni & Karam, 2014; Dries, 2011; Heslin, 2005). While career success literature has both addressed success from a subjective and an objective standpoint, the subjective perspective more appropriately fits the idea of career as relating to identity, meaning, and purpose.  Objective aspects of career that are measurable such as salary and advancement in positions (Ng, Eby, Sorenson, & Feldman, 2005) are meaningful for broad generalizations and evaluating the effectiveness of programs.  An important parameter that is integral to the definition of career success is the financial prospects related to an individual’s current or anticipated positions.  As an objective measure of career success, the monetary value attached to career success not only finds extensive research attention (Stumpf & Tymon, 2012), but also stands out as a significant indicator of success from the perspective of research participants (Dries, Pepermans, & De Kerpel, 2008).  However, an exclusively objective measure of career success misses out on some of the unique and intangible benefits of career.  Subjective career success, on the other hand, focuses on “the experience of achieving goals that are personally meaningful to the individual, rather than those set by parents, peers, an organization, or society” (Mirvis & Hall, 1994, p. 366). Interpretive research methodology has been identified as the preferred research paradigm for studying subjective career success (Shockley, Ureksoy, Rodopman, Poteat, & Dullaghan, 2016).  22 The preference for subjective definitions of career success does not preclude the possibility of individuals referring to the pecuniary aspects of career.  In terms of individual assessment of personal career success, it is not uncommon for people to evaluate their accomplishments using monetary criteria (see Ng et al., 2005).  Also, other studies reveal that objective factors of career success such as promotions, mobility, and salary increase have an impact on the subjective experience of satisfaction with career (see Stumpf & Tymon, 2012). However, one would expect more references to how career fulfills the financial goals and aspirations of people, not only in the context of recognizing objective indicators of career success, but in the very conceptualization of career.  This, however, is only minimally addressed in more recent Western career literature.  Non-western career development literature and studies involving non-Western participants have several references to the role of money, income, and salary in career decision-making (Kim, 1993; Leong, Hardin, & Gupta, 2007; Liu, McMahon, & Watson, 2015).  The reason for this discrepancy might be associated with the increasing realization that financial security is an assumption of early or traditional career theories (Adamson et al., 1998).  However, the cultural model of success is more potent for immigrants and their children.  In many Asian cultures, career success is mostly defined in monetary terms, and there is a clear expectation that immigrant children take up educational paths and career options that would help them earn the highest possible salary and would help them maintain a high standard of living (Kim 1993).  This is essentially tied to barriers they had to overcome including the “transitional penalty” they had to pay when they moved to a new country (Fang, Zikic, Novicevic, 2009)   Another concept supported in career success literature is the role of experience in facilitating success.  For example, the notion of career success is summarized as “an outcome of  23 a person’s career experiences” (Arthur, Khapova, & Wilderom, 2005, p. 179).  In fact, according to Arthur et al. (2005), the most important contributor to career development is the experience they gain over the years.  Ng et al. (2005) have pointed out that with experience comes increased knowledge, skills and diversity of perspectives along with possible job tenure and educational level.  Hence, all of these factors together increase the likelihood of career success. While factors that promote career success have been acknowledged (e.g., Abele & Spurk, 2009; Aryee, Chay, & Tan, 1994), there is relatively fewer research on how cultural and immigration-related factors can not only become barriers, but might also influence their subjective perception of success due to what they have not been able to accomplish in comparison with what they have left behind (Fang et al., 2009).  One of the models that have been consistently applied to career success of immigrant people is the social capital theory of career success (Seibert, Kraimer, & Liden, 2001).  Though the theory finds its origin and initial application in the West, it has been successfully applied to first generation immigrants and also to academic success of second-generation immigrants (see Kao & Rutherford, 2007).  Nakhaie and Kazemipur (2013) studied how social capital facilitated the labour market integration of new immigrants to Canada.  They found that with increased social networks and access to information there is an increased probability of career success.  However, it is not the mere quantity of networks, but also the heterogeneity and diversity shared across networks that have found to increase the chances of success.  For example, it has been found that the homogeneity of social networks is detrimental to success (Nakhaie & Kazemipur, 2013).  Along with exploring how culture influences the definition of career success, studies have also examined whether there is a generational difference in how career success is characterized.  Dries et al. (2008) examined four generations (Silent Generation, Baby Boomers,  24 Generation X, and Generation Y) and their idea of career and success.  The participants in this study used both tangible criteria to evaluate career success such as salary, functional level, promotion, and promotion speed, along with the intangible criteria of career satisfaction.  For Generation Y participants, Dries et al. found the overarching theme of career satisfaction being identified as career success; in fact, career satisfaction was almost tantamount to success.  The design of the study, which involved participants judging career success of others based on vignettes, they argue help grasp the “shared social understanding” of career success than merely depending on idiosyncratic meaning of success.  Differences in culture and changes in perspectives across generations can be integrated to better understand the role of culture and development stage in career success.  Thus, it may be concluded that cultural background of immigrants most likely determines their perception of success in monetary terms, while the stage of development of young adults leads them to a subjective definition of success focusing on satisfaction. Career Theories Since Frank Parsons pioneering of the guidance movement in the early twentieth century, the attempt to develop frameworks for helping people with career decision-making has evolved over time.  The earlier theories mainly focused on the psychological characteristic of the individual (Inkson & Elkin, 2008).  The classic theories of career, referred to as the “big five” career theories, (Leung, 2008) – viz. Minnesota theory of work-adjustment, Holland’s theory of vocational personalities and work environment, Super’s self-concept theory of career development (with more recent formulation by Savickas), Gottfredson’s theory of circumscription and compromise along with the social cognitive career theory – do not fully recognize contextual aspects of career development (Inkson & Elkin, 2008).  This can be  25 somewhat limiting in the face of the present-day challenges of global careers.  However, these theories have informed the career literature about the content and processes of career development (Patton & McMahon, 2006).  Some theories focused on the content of career decision-making, such as personal characteristics of the decision-maker and the characteristics of the workplace.  These theories prioritized finding a possible ‘fit’ between the person and the ‘right’ career path.  An example of this approach, which is followed to this day, is John Holland’s theory of vocational personalities and work environments.  There were other theories that emphasized the process of career development over an individual’s life-span.  Donald Super’s (1980) theory is an example of a developmental career theory.  There also has been an attempt to focus on both content and process of career development.  The social cognitive theory of career by Lent, Brown, and Hacket (1994) is an example.  In this theory, they also acknowledge the role of cognition and how cognition interacts with the process and content of process in determining career development. Though the role of personal characteristics in career development is less emphasized in recent theories, their contribution cannot be ignored or minimized.  Personal qualities of the individual continue to influence vocational psychology literature and there is a link between personality characteristics and different aspects of career development such as decision-making (e.g., Gati, Krausz, & Osipow, 1996).  Research has demonstrated that personal characteristics influence career development (Boudreau, Boswell, & Judge, 2001; Seibert & Kraimer, 2001).  Also, empirical research based on social cognitive career theory (SCCT) has established the salience of internal beliefs such as self-efficacy in career decision-making (Lent, Ezeofor, Morrison, Penn, & Ireland, 2016). Now there has been a shift towards incorporating more constructivist approaches and the  26 role of contextual factors is well acknowledged (Guichard, 2005; Leong & Gupta, 2008; Patton, 2008).  Career theories now have broadened to account for the complexity of a globalized world.  They also acknowledge the influence of environmental social systems on career decision-making and have incorporated dimensions of culture into the theories.  Also, there is a greater initiative towards integrating theories (Chen, 2003; Patton, 2008).  Many contemporary theorists have called for bringing together career theories and approaching career as a whole and converging the relevant influences to propose a broader framework.  The rapid changes in the world of work and the ensuing uncertainty makes it inevitable to have broader and convergent frameworks.  Another theme that has emerged in career theories is the emphasis on self-development (Guichard & Lenz, 2005).  These changes are consistent with how the world of work and people’s participation in the world of work has changed over the years.  The 21st Century understanding of careers, as discussed earlier, is well reflected in the contemporary theories and models of career decision-making.  Current theories, in keeping with the modern changes, have integrated aspects of diversity, contextual and cultural influences, social justice, uncertainty, and career construction (Anderson, Goodman, & Schlossberg, 2012; Arthur & Collins, 2010; Krumboltz, 2009; McMahon, 2005; Pope, 2009; Pryor & Bright, 2011; Savickas, 2011a).  Unexpected life events, when acknowledged, makes the career theories more ecologically valid and easy to apply.  One such theory is Mitchell et al.’s (1999) theory of planned happenstance.  According to this theory, unexpected life events and circumstances may be capitalized for career success.  This is counterintuitive because most often people expect unanticipated events to be disadvantageous.  Similarly, in chaos theory of careers (Pryor & Bright, 2011), the dynamic interaction of stability and change influenced by multiple and contextual factors operating in unpredictable manner is recognized both in theory as well as in  27 practice.  Hence, there is an increasing acceptance of change, uncertainty, and ambiguity in career decision-making.  Also, the need to continue incorporating these concepts in career theory is emphasized (Trevor-Roberts, 2006). Hence, it is most appropriate to think beyond the rational framework of decision-making, which has dominated career theories for a long time.  This is a definite shift from the past, where decisions were expected to be more or less fixed, and likely to have occurred in the early years of an individual’s life.  Moreover, with greater acceptance of constructive approaches in career research (Patton, 2008), the lived experience of people making career decisions are now greatly valued than ever before.  The subjective experience of transitioning through the various stages of career is emphasized. When attempting to understand the career development process of immigrants, some of the recent theories and frameworks address facets of their unique transitional experience that are not fully captured by other theories.  For example, Schlossberg’s, (2011) transition model focuses on the systemic factors that are common to all transition, and they suggest coping strategies to manage career development that intersects with transition.  Another theory that emphasizes an aspect that is integral to immigrant career development, but is often ignored, is Schultheiss’s (2007) relational cultural paradigm.  In this approach the role of meaning attached to relationships that are mediated by the culture is seen as an important dimension of career development.  Thus, the nexus between life, family, work, and long-term goals are considered equally important to vocational development.  From the career counselling perspective both Leong’s (2011) cultural accommodation model and Arthur and Collins’ (2010) culture infused-counselling, recommend specific steps and strategies for assessing and working with clients from a multicultural perspective and paying attention to not just universal and individual factors related to career development, but also focus  28 on the often ignored group factors that contribute to the different levels of identity, affecting vocational choices.  Another important dimension that has been somewhat addressed in the above theories, but not as strongly as in Pope’s, (2009) model and the systems theory framework by McMahon, (2005) is the unique challenge faced by immigrants due to their minority status.  Minority career decision-making is marked with the necessity of overcoming systemic barriers and acknowledging the social, political, and cultural factors that call for the role of advocacy in career development.  Another model of career development that has been postulated keeping in mind the transitional challenges of immigrants is Arulmani’s (2012) cultural preparedness approach.  Here, the realities of the labour market are emphasized along with interests and personal qualities of the individual.  Also, the multiple influences from one’s culture shapes the beliefs and expectations of the individual in terms of what career means and what career is expected to provide.  In a recent version of the model, Arulmani (2019) proposed the interaction between aspiration and engagement as determining the successful navigation of work and career for new immigrants. While these expanded models for career interventions appear to better reflect current realities, they are not anchored in the first-hand experiences of young immigrants, who are not only at a decisive developmental stage with regards to self-discovery and meaning-making, but also might be sharing vulnerabilities associated with ethnic and cultural identities.  Now that career is conceptualized more as a life project (Guichard, 2005; Savickas, 2012), the voices of those who are engaged in the shaping of their own career identities gain importance.  There is an ever-growing need to support the notion that people construct their lives and careers while navigating through different social contexts (Richardson, 2012).  29 Immigrant Career Development  There has been an increasing emphasis on cultural considerations in career development, more recently than in the past.  However, with regards to immigrants, there continues to be a paucity of research, theoretical frameworks, and targeted career intervention models.  Also, the match between existing theories and corresponding practice is still at an inception stage (Bimrose & McNair, 2011).  One of the identified challenges has to do with adapting Western career theories that are largely focused on the individual to immigrants who come from cultures that rely on the community and families for career decision-making.  Also, other challenges associated with cross-cultural transition bring in many barriers to career development for new immigrants (Arulmani, 2019; Kennedy & Chen, 2012; Mak, Westwood, & Ishiyama, 1994).   When immigrants come from collectivist societies such as China, India, and Philippines – these are countries from where most immigrants to Canada come from (Chagnon, 2013) – the differences in communication, expected work values, interpersonal relations often have an effect on the immigrant both in terms of available opportunities and its psychological impact.  Moreover, adapting to the values of individualistic culture creates the context for potential conflict.  It may not be easy for immigrants from collectivist cultures to prioritize individual achievements, self-reliance, and personal rights and goals at the expense of community values and interdependence (Black, Mrasek, & Ballinger, 2003).  These conflicts of values have a bearing on the career transition of immigrants and they come in the way of their career development (Kennedy & Chen, 2012).  Consequently, minority immigrants pass through several phases of unemployment and underemployment in the host country (Chen, 2008; Mak et al., 1994), leading to high levels of stress among these immigrants (Dean & Wilson, 2009).  However, there is a lack of empirically supported intervention strategies and theoretical  30 formulations to support the career development of immigrants and especially skilled immigrants (Kennedy & Chen, 2012). Leong and Flores (2015) have critically reviewed the various models and interventions in career development, focusing on the applicability of the theories to a multicultural context and with clients from diverse cultural backgrounds.  They observed that both existing traditional theories and culture-specific theories may be utilized for working with the immigrant population.  Traditional theories address many aspects of career development that are common to all cultures and they hold value for the immigrant population as well.  However, there are culture specific variables that are unique to specific cultural groups or immigrants in general.  Adapting Western theories might not address some of the unique aspects of career development for specific immigrant groups.  Even when a multicultural approach is adopted, such as in social cognitive career theory (SCCT), the onus on the individual for making a progress is more burdensome than what is often anticipated by immigrant clients.  The success of a career intervention is expected to depend on the adaptability of the immigrant.  There is often a huge demand made on the immigrant and requires that they be open to circumstances and situations that are essentially novel to them.  The values of openness, flexibility, and pro-active initiation becomes a necessity and their survival depends on them.  The challenge is to identify career theories that are sensitive to the cultural factors that make the above values novel to immigrant people and yet acknowledge the need for acquiring these values.  Hence, when working with immigrants and facilitating their career development, career practitioners have to often go beyond the traditional understanding of career and incorporate life themes and holistic aspects of personal development in career discourse.  While  31 traditional theories emphasize personal agency in career decision-making, one criticism is that many immigrants do not have the resources for turning opportunities to success.  There are often issues of poverty, cultural and language barriers that comes in the way of exercising problem-solving strategies. The life-design model by Savickas (2012) is one of the models that emphasize personal agency, which is considered essential for career success in North-America.  It is important to pay attention to the past experiences, potentials, and success stories of the immigrants as they make their transition.  With respect to intervention for immigrants that addresses their cognitive functioning, the social cognitive career theory (Lent, Brown, & Hackett, 2002) has been found useful (Kennedy & Chen, 2012).  The SCCT, provides a framework for optimizing career choices based on targeting self-efficacy beliefs of the individual (Sharf, 2010).  Increasing self-efficacy facilitates the coping of the individual to overcome the external barriers that often hinder progress.  While empirical evidence is available to support the application of SCCT to people from diverse cultural groups, the specific application of this theory to young immigrants who are both undergoing developmental and cultural transitions is not yet investigated. Most immigrants to Canada who have acquired professional experience and training in other countries find it extremely challenging to convince employers and regulatory bodies in Canada to honour their previous credentials from their home countries (Reitz, et al., 2014; Guo, 2013).  This struggle is experienced not by the individual alone, but as a family and the impact of these barriers on the career decision-making of their children has not been fully investigated or reported.  However, most children of immigrants are backed by their parents to succeed in their career because many parents have sacrificed their own career development to support their  32 children’s education and vocational aspirations (Zuberi & Ptashnick, 2012).  The sacrifice and support provided by the parents also contribute towards making their children, to induce a sense of responsibility and burden to pay back to their parents in terms of doing well, in return for what they owe for their sacrifice (Storlie, Mostade, & Duenyas, 2016).  Therefore, the experience of first-generation immigrants needs to be acknowledged in its context to fully understand the career development of the subsequent generations, who either came here before becoming adults or were born here.  The experience of migrating to Canada have been challenging for most people (Wang & Palacios, 2017), though it likely did serve a positive function for their children.  Since the transition to Canada for immigrant families has likely been marked with barriers and uncertainties, their transitional challenges serve as a motivator for increasing the likelihood of success anticipated for the children in the future.  It may also be inferred that immigrant families are likely to be engaged in a very concerted effort towards facilitating the success of the next generation.  In fact, research on the economic integration of second-generation immigrants point towards a positive outcome.  According to Palameta (2007), second generation immigrant young people in Canada have longer years of schooling and have higher average annual income compared to young men and women with both Canadian-born parents. Though there are positive outcomes of immigration – seen from a generational perspective and considering the nation as a whole – the process of acculturation, negotiating cultural identity, and making multiple transitions for individuals and families moving to Canada comes with its own challenges, especially related to career decision-making (see Elez, 2014, Berry & Hou, 2017; Berry & Sabatier, 2010; Cohen & Kassan, 2018; Dheer & Lenartowicz, 2018).  Some challenges are more pronounced than others in terms of career development.  They  33 include economic integration, language acquisition, and age-related factors that hinder career development.  These specific challenges are discussed below based on the literature in the field. Canada’s immigration policy has been instrumental in bringing skilled and educated immigrants to the country, with the hope of promoting economic growth of the country.  However, most immigrants themselves do not acquire the level of economic stability they would have aspired to when they moved here (Picot, 2004).  This explains the financial challenges that are experienced by many immigrant families in spite the fact that they are highly educated and have significant work experience in professional fields from their home country.  It is a paradox that many immigrants who qualified to come to Canada because of their skills and education are denied further opportunities for experiencing success.  In other words, their previous success cannot be capitalized for future success.  However, in spite of the challenges, many immigrants and their children have experienced success (Finnie & Mueller, 2010; Motti-Stefanidi et al., 2012).  Some immigrants have been able to find the opportunity to work in the same field in which they have studied, which may be considered a success.  This again alludes to seeing their career plan work.  Also, some young immigrants have overcome their initial challenges to bring their career plans to fruition, in spite of a volatile job market and the associated uncertainties.  Their testimony of success is an acknowledgement of the family’s success in achieving the goals of transitioning to Canada.  Nevertheless, the compelling evidence that points towards many immigrant parents giving up their career for the success of their children (Bauder, 2019) cannot be dismissed. Another barrier that most immigrants and their children face, which directly affects their career development, has to do with the acquisition of the English language.  Since language is an important determinant of socialization that is critical to the acculturation of immigrants, career  34 development often is tied to this function more than it is understood.  Derwing and Waugh (2012) have found that social and economic integration of new immigrants to Canada who had challenges with the English language were limited.  Also, immigrants who have learnt the English language, but are less fluent or have an accent or a dialect different from native speakers have been reported to experience discrimination in the workplace (Creese & Kambere, 2003).  Carlson and McHenry (2006) have found that perceived accent or dialect along with comprehensibility can affect the employability of immigrants.  Creese and Kambere (2003) in their article titled “What colour is your English?” reported how accent and dialect can prime the listener to attend to aspects of ethnicity and social recognition, which in turn may trigger stereotypes and an increased likelihood for discrimination and isolation, in spite of knowing the language well.   For youth in Canada, the accent hierarchy and linguicism (discrimination based on language) is found to place first generation immigrants at a greater disadvantage, marginalization, and discrimination than those born in Canada (Kayaalp, 2016).  Challenges with the English language have also found to negatively impact academic performance, social integration, cultural adaptation, identity development, access to resources, institutional supports, and mental health of immigrant youth (Arthur, 2000; Derwing & Waugh, 2012; Omidvar & Richmond, 2003; Westwood & Ishiyama, 1991; Yeh, 2003).  The developmental stage of youth and adolescence is likely to make the negative effect of language challenges more severe due to the critical factors related to identity formation during that stage.  Also, it has been found that the proficiency in learning English as a second language is constrained by maturational factors and hence age at immigration matters, when it comes to acquiring English language skills (Stevens, 1999)   35 The intersection of the developmental stage and immigration experience goes beyond language acquisition when considering the age at which people immigrate.  Age at immigration have been also associated with the level of success experienced by immigrants.  For example, Schaafsma and Sweetman (2001) found that immigrants arriving at a later age, on an average, make less money (Schaafsma & Sweetman, 2001).  They also concluded from their regression analysis based on census data with a sample size of 29,986 that immigrants who come to Canada in their late teens are less likely to be successful compared to their peers who are born in Canada. The process of acculturation and the extent to which immigrants are able achieve bicultural identity integration is expected to have an impact on career development of immigrants.  Bicultural identity integration is the difference in how “some biculturals perceive their cultural identities as compatible and complementary, (while) others tend to describe them as oppositional and contradictory’’ (Benet-Martı ́nez, Leu, Lee, & Morris, 2002, p. 493).  When identities associated with their native culture and the host culture are experienced as incompatible and oppositional, the career development process for such individuals are likely to hit several roadblocks, especially because of the values of the host culture that dominate the context of career decision-making.  Also, when participants experience acculturative stress as involving discrimination, challenges with linguistic and intercultural relationships, and perceived cultural isolation, they are less likely to experience overall well-being (Chen, Benet‐Martínez, & Bond, 2008).  Moreover, in some instances there is an active tension emanating from conflict between family influence and personal preferences, affecting the career development of immigrant young people.  While the intergenerational conflict based on inconsistencies in cultural values hindering career decision-making have been documented (Ghosh & Fouad, 2016; Taylor & Krahn, 2013),  36 the advantages of biculturalism and bilingualism have also been prominently highlighted in acculturation literature (Benet-Martı ́nez & Haritatos, 2005).  Multicultural exposure has been associated with increased personal and career-related (professional) success including creativity, promotion at the workplace and positive reputation (Caligiuri, 2006; Leung, Maddux, Galinsky, & Chiu, 2008; Tadmor, Galinsky, & Maddux, 2012).  Career Development of Youth When young people are making decisions about work and employment, it represents a transition, which lies at the intersection of school-life, adult life, and work-life.  Thus, career development may be best discussed within the framework of youth transitions (Blustein, Phillips, Jobin-Davis, Finkelberg, & Roarke, 1997).  There are both opportunities and risks associated with youth transitions (Beaujot & Kerr, 2007).  Also, these transitions may or may not be supported by existing larger socio-economic structures and/or cultural frameworks.  The expectations around youth transition differ considerably among people groups, societies, and nations.  One of the consequences of contextual influences on transitional experiences is the impact it has on the identity development of youth.  Schwartz et al. (2012) has illustrated the processes of identity development in seven countries representing Europe and East Asia, and has compared not only how these processes differ across nations, but also within the same nation, depending on whether the individual comes from a dominant culture, minority culture, or whether or not he/she is an immigrant.  The findings point to the value differences in permissiveness, collective guilt, and family ties and obligation across nations and sections of community.  There has also been some attention paid to themes of independence and interdependence in youth transition literature (Phinney & Baldelomar, 2011).  The dependence-independence continuum, and aspects of interdependence may be understood in the light of how  37 social and relational factors plays a role in the transition, especially with regards to career development (Blustein, 2011). The recent conceptualization of career also renders transition as an inevitable part of the process (Hess, Jespen, & Dries, 2012; Muja & Appelbaum, 2012).  It is expected that people make transitions of all kinds and it is more a norm than an exception.  Transitions may happen at any level.  While the school-to-work transition has its own challenges, it is only the beginning of many occupational transitions that have to be made in a lifetime.  Some transitions can be more stressful than others.  For example, when individuals lose their job due to downsizing, or when a person migrates to a new geographical locations and has to start all over again – as what most immigrants in Canada do – the impact can be major and the significant others in the person’s life is affected (Kennedy & Chen, 2012; Mak, Westwood, Ishiyama, & Barker, 1999).  Cross-cultural transition is found to be associated with several social and psychological challenges (Ward & Kennedy, 1994).  When the transition has an impact on the career development trajectory, the individual making the transition is in need of greater support.  While there is some agreement with regards to the possible causes and consequences of career transition (Chudzikowski et al., 2009), the extent to which the transition process can be affected by social and contextual factors is not easy to investigate (Higgins, 2001).  Moreover, when people change occupations and move in and out of work, there is an effect on mental health, general wellbeing, and identity of the person making the transition (Fouad & Bynner, 2008).  However, Borgen, et al. (2010) have reported that even everyday changes in the workplace can negatively impact the employee emotionally, psychologically, and even physically. Career development for racialized immigrant youth in Canada is different from white middle class western young people (Taylor & Krahn, 2013).  The influence of intergenerational  38 factors is also significant for racialized immigrant youth (Tyyskä, 2007).  Reference to autonomy and independence, which is often a characteristic of youth career transition, may look different for some groups of immigrant youth.  For example, immigrant youth have a greater obligation to the family than non-immigrant youth (Phinney & Vedder, 2006). Another notable aspect that is expected to influence the career development of immigrant youth is the experience of their parents who have had to undergo the challenges of career transition as they moved to Canada (Shakya et al., 2010).  The nature of the influence may be best understood from a lifecourse perspective (Edmonston, 2013).  The career development of immigrant youth may be compared/contrasted with their parents.  From a lifecourse standpoint, both parents and young adults influence each other’s lifecourses when either of them or both are involved in the process of career-decision making.  While there has been research initiative with regard to youth transition in Canada (see Beaujot & Kerr, 2007), not much is known about immigrant youth transitions. Career development of young adults can be challenging in the present-day world, where youth employment opportunities are lacking.  In Canada youth unemployment rate is almost double that of the national average (Wilkinson, 2008), with the gap narrowing more recently, but still significant (Yssaad & Fields, 2018) There are challenges that are specific to immigrant youth.  However, research exploring the experience of immigrant young adults who are trying to make it to the world of work is lacking (Chui & Tran, 2005; Lauer et al., 2012; Schellenberg & Maheux, 2007).  Lauer et al.’s (2012) research is one of the few studies devoted to investigating the career development of young adults who have recently immigrated to Canada.  They have reported the many challenges that these youth face in their career journey.  Some of the barriers that work against immigrant youth include factors related to language, access to resources,  39 discrimination, and lack of necessary social support that might have helped them to overcome this challenge.  Lauer et al. (2012) also found that in spite of the barriers, many immigrant youth were able to gain access to the job market through the network of friends and family. To fully understand the career development of young people, it would be helpful to find the relationship between career and identity as it applies to youth.  To begin, career may be defined as integral to personal identity since work often contributes towards revealing aspects of the self that help in the definition of the self (Vallerand & Houlfort, 2003).  For young adults this self-definition goes hand in hand with the process of thinking about career and conceptualizing their career trajectory.  In most Western societies, this may be considered a developmental milestone in identity formation (Arnett, 2000; Laughland-Booÿ, Newcombe, & Skrbiš, 2017; Luyckx, Lens, Smits, & Goossens, 2010).  However, the extended time period that people in Western societies have to wait before reaching adulthood, may influence how career development and identity formation interact.  Nevertheless, career identity is one of the milestones that emerging adults are expected to accomplish (Laughland-Booÿ et al., 2017).  Career identity formation also encompasses unification of individual’s perceptions of their past, present and future.  The past experiences of successes and failures in career-related activities, the present engagement with work and school, along with the anticipation of how their future is conceived play a role in identity formation.  This theme is reflected in the research findings on the role of time perspective and future outlook in identity formation (Crocetti, Palmonari, & Pojaghi, 2011; Laughland-Booÿ et al., 2017).  For example, Laughland-Booÿ et al. (2017) found that some participants who had postponed identity exploration in the past were presently not exploring career options and also did not have any current commitments (diffusion identity status).  However, other young participants having made no commitment to a career  40 identity in the past, were engaged in career exploration (moratorium identity status).  The participants with the moratorium identity status also did not seem to have fixed idea of what their long-term future might look like but foresaw their capacity to adapt to opportunities in the future. Thus, Laughland-Booÿ et al. found support for the different identity status related to temporality of career identity achievement, providing support for the relationships between present career development of young people and their perception of past and future in terms of who they want to be in relation to their vocational engagement. Career identity formation is also believed to be facilitated by the culture and the context in which an individual is situated.  Although many identity theories including vocational identity theories have often described identity development as an individual task that focuses on personal traits, beliefs, values, and strengths (McArdle, Waters, Briscoe, & Hall, 2007), it is only part of the story.  The often-ignored part is the role of culture norms, especially for people who identify as biculturals, in career identity development.  The potential identity conflict resulting from not being full accepted by the host culture while feeling alienated from their original culture is more salient for second generation immigrants and also for 1.5 generation immigrants (Potvin, 2008).  The term 1.5 generation immigrant refers to those individuals who migrated before adulthood and were likely to be in their teens (Shields & Lujan, 2018).   According to Tao, Zhang, Lou, and Lalonde (2018), the different acculturation process associated with the mainstream Canadian culture and the heritage culture of their country of origin predicts different identity styles for young people.  They tested Berzonsky’s (1989) identity style model with Chinese young adults in Canada and found that when the young adults in their study were more acculturated to the Canadian culture they adopted an informational career decision-making style as opposed to a normative decision-making style that is more  41 characteristic of participants who were relatively more accultured to the Chinese culture.  Thus, the process of career identity formation has been found to differently influenced by acculturation.  The models of identity development based on identity status (e.g., Marcia, 1966) usually consider identity to be stable and does not account for developmental changes (Berzonsky, 1989), and they are often based on valuing Western notions of autonomy and independence.  These models often emphasize passing through and/or reaching a set number of statuses in the process of career identity development such as career exploration, commitment, and reconsideration (e.g., Porfeli, Lee, Vondracek, & Weigold, 2011).  An alternate approach to understanding the career identity development of immigrant young people is the constructivist view of career identity.  From a constructivist perspective the importance of contextualized understanding of identity in the individual’s definition of career is highlighted more than a predetermined stage or a status.  The reference to identity from the constructivist perspective focuses on the subjective identity form related to career (Guichard et al., 2012).  This refers to the construction of identity that is dynamic and associated within a particular setting (here career) and is believed to guide the individual’s being and action according to one’s self-construction.  Hence, when immigrant young people navigate their identity in the context of multiple cultures, intersections of narratives facilitate the construction of career identities.  Relational Context of Career Decision-making There is also a considerable focus on the role of relational variables in career related outcomes including career decision-making (Blustein, 2011; Richardson, 2012; Saka, Gati & Kelly, 2008; Young et al., 2006).  We now know that others are included in the career decision-making process (Amundson, Borgen, Iaquinta, Butterfield, & Koert, 2010; Britten & Borgen, 2010; Phillips, Christopher-Sisk, & Gravino, 2001) and this is particularly salient in collective  42 cultures (Leung, Hou, Gati, & Li, 2011).  According to Blustein (2011), people do not make career decisions in a “relational vacuum”, and they do not always have the autonomy in making planned career choices based on interests and aspirations alone.  The relational orientation is deemed to be an important cultural competence in the career development process for people from non-western cultures (Leong & Wong, 2003).  Research in the area of immigrant career decision-making have noted the role of family and relational factors in career development (Elez, 2014; Yakushko, Backhaus, Watson, Ngaruiya, & Gonzalez, 2008).  The relational influence in career development reflect the changing contexts in people’s environments and the personal developmental changes, which often plays out in the family setting (Vondracek, Lerner, & Schulenberg, 1986; Whiston & Keller, 2004).  However, relational influences also extend beyond one’s family, and they provide the individual the validation necessary for navigating the unknown territories of work and vocational decision-making.  According to the self-validation model by Ishiyama (1989, 1995), immigrants benefit from external source of validation and it facilitates cross-cultural adjustment.  The “validation networks” that are available to immigrant young people in the form of friends, mentors, and supervisors is an integral factor in meeting their need for validation in various domains of their life including career development.  The validation thus received is expected to provide them with a sense of support, acceptance, recognition, and fulfillment.  Sinacore, Park-Saltzman, Mikhail, and Wada (2011) examined the positive impact of significant others outside family through mentoring on career development for immigrant and international students in Canada.  Other studies have confirmed the value of multiple mentoring relationships as related to different domains (e.g., work, school, community) in supporting the career development of immigrants (Benishek, Bieschke, Park, & Slattery, 2004; Higgins & Thomas, 2001; Sinacore et al., 2011).   43 Career theories also acknowledge the relational dimensions of decision-making.  For example, the social cognitive career theory (Lent, et al., 1994) provides a framework for exploring the influence of parents in the career decision of adolescents (Garcia, Restubog, Toledano, Tolentino, & Rafferti, 2012; Sawitri, Creed, & Zimmer-Gembeck, 2014).  Also, other researchers have paid attention to how belongingness in the family is associated with career decision-making (Britten & Borgen, 2010; Slaten & Baskin, 2014).  The interest in the relational context of career decision-making can be traced to some of the early career theorists.  Ann Roe (1956) particularly argued for the influence of the family in career decision-making.  Her vocational theory emphasized the impact of early childhood interactions on the specific choice of a vocation.  Though Roe’s theory was limited in exploring the influence of the family to parental interactions, it well complemented our understanding of career development to what was known with regards to personality and individual determinants of career.  Other theorists during the 1940s and 1950s (Ginzberg, Ginsburg, Axelrad, & Herma, 1951; Super, 1942, 1957) acknowledged the influence of the family, but did not explicitly spell out the nature of the relationship.  In the 1970s, however, career literature predominantly focused on individual and personality factors with less attention on systemic influences.  An exception to this was Osipow’s (1973) social system’s approach.  Osipow maintained that contextual factors such as cultural expectations, family background, and socioeconomic influences based on race and sex determine vocational choice.  This sociological framework for understanding vocational choices well complimented the psychological theory proposed by Roe in setting a stage for exploring relational factors associated with career decision-making. While Osipow advocated for a social systems approach, Bratcher (1982) focused on the family systems approach and postulated the role of family influences on career decision-making.   44 The family systems approach continued to inspire research in career development (Kinnier, Brigman, & Noble, 1990; Lopez & Andrews, 1987; Zingaro, 1983).  More recently, the systems theory framework (Patton & McMahon, 2006) has been proposed.  This approach acknowledges the multiple influences including reciprocal influence on career development.  Other integrative theories include social cognitive career theory (Lent et al., 2002) and the career construction theory (Savickas, 2005).  An integration of relational theory with career theory may be observed in the work of Josselson (1992) who argued for a meta-perspective with regards to the interface between the relational and career worlds of people.  More recently, Blustein’s (2011) relational theory of working is particularly useful in understanding not only career development but also all aspects of work from a relational perspective.  Thus, the convergence of personal and interpersonal influences in vocational decision-making demonstrates a shift from the traditional Western conception of career as a primarily individual enterprise and is also consistent with the more recent multicultural understanding of career. From an empirical standpoint, Kahl (1953) was among the earliest to study the role of parental influence on children’s educational and occupational aspirations.  Kahl’s (1953) qualitative study revealed that parental pressure is a determining factor in the aspiration of boys for higher educational goals.  There is substantial research literature available on the influence of parents on the career development of children (see Bryant, Zvonkovic, & Reynolds, 2006 for a review).  Other studies have focused on the influence of the entire family (Blustein, Walbridge, Friedlander, & Palladino, 1991; Herr & Lear, 1984), extended family members (Schultheiss, Kress, Manzi, & Glasscock, 2001), and even friends (Sinclair, Carlsson, & Björklund, 2014).  Contextual influences such as social and cultural factors, including ethnic diversity, have also been explored along with the relational dimension of career decision-making (e.g., Hill, Ramirez,  45 & Dumka, 2003).  Over the years two extensive reviews have been undertaken (see Schulenberg, Vondracek, & Crouter, 1984; Whiston & Keller, 2004) that outlines the various family related variables associated with career development.  Whiston and Keller (2004), a decade ago, conducted one of the most comprehensive reviews on the influence of the family in career development.  Since then, research endeavours in the field continue to expand and we have an increased understanding with regards to how careers are conceptualized and the way in which family and other relational aspects influence career development and outcomes. Conclusion Career literature looks promising with regards to acknowledging the career development of people from non-Western and minority groups.  The current study aims to continue the process of theory building and with regards to the decision-making process of young immigrants in Canada who may have experienced marginalization (Yan, Lauer, & Chan, 2012), but perceive themselves to be doing well. The line of inquire is to answer the question pertaining to what helps and hinders the career decision-making of immigrant young people you self-define as doing well.  Knowing how they have managed career decision making in the past and discovering what helps and hinders their career decision-making will open up the possibility of tailoring interventions that increase the efficacy of better integration of these young adults into the world of work.  46 Chapter Three: Methodology This chapter describes the methodology used in the study.  Beginning with the study design and its rationale, the history and evolution of the enhanced critical incident technique (ECIT) is discussed along with its application to counselling psychology research.  Next, the philosophical and methodological issues relevant to the study design are discussed along with assumptions of the researcher.  Finally, methodological procedures for the current study including participant recruitment, description of the sample, data collection and analysis are discussed along with checks of credibility and trustworthiness. The Study Design The current research is a qualitative study and is designed to explore what helps and hinders career decision-making of young immigrants, who self-define as doing well with their career decision-making.  In this exploratory study, ECIT guided the process of inquiry.  With the help of open-ended interviews participants were initially invited to talk about what doing well in their career decision-making means to them.  ECIT was then used to obtain a description of what helped, hindered or would have helped participants' career decision-making processes (Butterfield, Borgen, Maglio, & Amundson, 2009).  Also, open-ended questions were asked to obtain contextual information about the participants’ definition of career and doing well.  In addition to the qualitative nature of the interview, there was a pre-and post-interview scaling question to identify the impact of the interview on the participants regarding their career decision-making.  Finally, demographic data was collected to facilitate the description of the sample.  47 The Rationale for the Study Design I believe the way in which immigrant youth make career-decisions can be best understood by engaging them in a research process, valuing their lived experience, and relying on their accounts of how they make sense of their unique contexts in selecting and rejecting career choices.  The goal here is not to capture a definitive reality, but to understand what goes on for these young people when they have to make career decisions, and what factors have helped and hindered them in this process.  I believe that in an attempt to understand how these young immigrants negotiate their career decision-making process, “the dynamic interaction between the researcher and participant is central to capturing and describing the ‘lived experience’ (Erlebnis) of the participant” (Ponterotto, 2005, p. 131).  The ECIT offers the opportunity for this necessary interaction, which is essential to answer the research questions.  However, I also believe that there ought to be procedural guidelines to ensure that the subjective bias of the researcher is minimized.  This is ensured through the use of credibility checks instituted in ECIT, which is discussed in detail below.  Thus, on the positivist-constructivist continuum, I believe ECIT to be leaning towards positivism (Chell, 1998).  The post-positivist assumptions related to ECIT are also discussed later.  The choice of ECIT for the current research was informed by valuing how the methodology helps generate a detailed description of data based on participants’ reporting on what they have observed in themselves, others, or in relationship to others (Woolsey, 1986).  The intention was to aid a better understanding of the experience of the participant for which we do not have a previous model, theory or framework to help understand the career decision-making of immigrant young people who self-define as doing well.   48 One of the prominent reasons for using ECIT in this study relates to the flexibility of applying critical incident technique (CIT) to studying an extensive range of experiences including career decision-making.  The type of research questions that are best answered using CIT are the ones that explore what helps and hinders a particular experience or activity (Butterfield et al., 2009).  In the current study, the focus is on helpful and hindering factors for immigrant young people making career decisions and self-define as doing well.  One of the recent developments in the evolution of the CIT is the introduction of a wish list (what would have helped) and the examination of contextual factors associated with the critical incidents (see Butterfield et al., 2009).  Thus, now we have the enhanced critical incident technique (ECIT) and it was the method of choice for the current study.  Hence, the study included a wish list of what could have been helpful in attaining the outcome, had it been available.  Also, CIT data may be in the form of factual events, internal qualities and attributes, or incidents (Woolsey, 1986).   Since Flanagan (1954) first mentioned the use of CIT in psychotherapy research, many researchers in counselling psychology have considered CIT as a well-suited qualitative method in counselling (Butterfield, Borgen, Amundson, & Maglio, 2005).  According to Bott and Tourish (2016, p. 278), CIT “has inherent inductive properties, as it does not force the respondent into a particular framework, does not require a hypothesis, and is relatively culturally neutral.” CIT also provides ample opportunity for an iterative research process that respects cultural protocols, values, and behaviours as an integral part of the methodology.  The flexibility of CIT has contributed towards its use with diverse populations such as African-American children (Kirk, 1995), First Nations people (McCormick, 1997), Chinese immigrants (Amundson, Yeung, Sun, Chan, & Cheng, 2011), Korean managers (Chai, Jeong, Kim, Kim, & Hamlin, 2016), Indigenous men exiting gangs (Goodwill & Ishiyama, 2016) and cross-cultural  49 clinical supervisors (Wong, Wong, & Ishiyama, 2013).  The critical incident technique has been previously applied to studying the immigrant populations including but not restricted to immigrant women workers managing change (Koert, Borgen, & Amundson, 2011), transition experience of Chinese immigrants to Canada (Amundson et al., 2011), and international students who pursued permanent residence to Canada (Arthur & Flynn, 2011). The Evolution of ECIT The beginnings of CIT.  The emergence of CIT corresponds to the dominance of behaviourism in the 1940s and 1950s along with the constant demand for applying scientific methods in promoting the war effort in the United States.  The value associated with observing behaviour and organizing them into categories stems from the behaviourist tradition that has likely influenced James Flanagan in identifying both the general and the specific factors related to pilot failures during the Second World War.  Flanagan was successful in providing behaviour-based explanations using his method for airmen who could not fly or those who failed in bombing missions.  His work, initially linked to the Aviation Psychology program, found a home at the American Institute for Research, where his method was formally called the critical incident technique (CIT).  While the first reference to CIT was made in 1949, Wagner (1950), who was one of Flanagan’s students published a paper that used critical incident technique to identify the “critical requirements” of a dentist (p. 190).  This was before Flanagan (1954) introduced his technique to the research world by publishing the CIT in the Psychological Bulletin.  With the initial application of the method in the field of industrial psychology, this method was mostly used to perform job and task analysis that yielded information on the critical requirements of a job.  The CIT was successfully applied to identify key components of a job function that helps meet the goals of the activity.   50 Although the initial application was related to analysing performance indicators of pilots in US Air Force and commercial airlines, Flanagan (1954) reviewed the application of CIT in fields beyond task performance and personnel selection to mention its use in the fields of education, personality, leadership, and counselling and psychotherapy – even during the early 1950s.  Of special importance is the research at the University of Pittsburgh that used CIT to study critical incidents related to client change and improvement as a result of psychotherapy.  Over the years, Flanagan’s method has continued to be used in studies that focus on specific behaviours or experiences that are deemed to be critical in achieving an aim (see Andersson & Nilsson, 1964; Butterfield et al., 2005; Butterfield, et al., 2009; Woolsey, 1986).  In a recent article, Viergever (2019), has outlined the varied contexts and disciplines wherein CIT has been used, also arguing for its status as a valid methodology. The continued adaptations of CIT.  Butterfield et al. (2005) have examined the evolution of CIT since its inception.  They identified four specific shifts over the years since Flanagan formally wrote about this methodology.  Each of these shifts is reflected in the application of this method in the current study.  One of the first departures relates to the unit of analysis.  Originally the target of investigation was observable behaviours and as early as 1953, even before the publication of the Flanagan’s seminal article, Eilbert (1953) used CIT to study the unobservable construct of emotional maturity.  This helped expand the scope of CIT beyond the strict behavioural domain of observable behaviours to experiences and internal factors.  Thus, the application of CIT to counselling and psychotherapy research, which was already present during Flanagan’s times in the form of student research at the University of Pittsburgh, was extended to other universities and for the purpose of examining different outcomes in psychotherapy (Standal & Corsini, 1959).  Woolsey (1986) outlines a number of reasons that  51 would make CIT a suitable method for research in the area of counselling psychology and psychotherapy, spanning from exploration of a phenomenon to theory building. The second shift identified by Butterfield et al. (2005), which logically relates to the earlier shift, refers to using retrospective self-report as opposed to direct observation of behaviour.  Now that unobservable behaviours are included in the subject of investigation, the way to access them will have to depend on self-report of participants.  What is noticeable is that the early description of the procedure to use CIT assumes observable behaviours, but most of the application of the method uses retrospective self-report (Butterfield et al., 2005).  The third shift involved the availability of more detailed procedures for analysing data when using the CIT method.  Woolsey (1986) provided a general outline that would facilitate categorization of incidents, which is consistent with Flanagan’s initial suggestion.  The challenge here is to negotiate the extent to which data analysis is consistent with the ontological and epistemological assumptions underlying this method, which is discussed in a later section.  Finally, the question of trustworthiness and consistency of the method, which makes the results more credible, has become an important topic of discussion, much beyond what was considered at the earlier stages of CIT.  Now there are explicit procedures that are outlined – referred to as credibility checks – which is expected to make the findings more trustworthy.  These credibility checks are discussed in detail in the section on trustworthiness. There are have been a few more adaptations to CIT over the years, and mainly coming out of research from UBC.  Butterfield et al. (2009) provided a detailed guide for conducting CIT studies and wrote about two additions to the existing CIT method, which they called the enhanced critical incident technique (ECIT).  The first addition was the inclusion of a contextual question that is asked prior to the CIT questions.  The contextual questions help the participants  52 to be primed to the content domain and it also helps me with information that highlights the context or background associated with the content domain of the activity that is studied.  The second addition was including questions that pertain to what the participants believed would have been desirable or beneficial with regards to the aim of the activity being studied.  This was called the wish list and they are helpful to understand the subjective perspective of the participants in terms of what they expected would have made the activity or situation better.  However, the wish list items do not have the same meaning as the critical incidents (N. Amundson, personal communication, June 13, 2019).  This is because they are not real incidents in the sense that they have not yet happened. Besides the two additions to the CIT method, Butterfield et al. (2009) also provided a sample interview guide that conforms to the ECIT format and is detailed enough for researchers to adapt it to their study.  This is helpful to establish consistency in the way data is collected even with multiple interviewers.  They also provided a sample table that lays out a systematic procedure to track the emergence of new categories.  This allows for appropriate logging of the interviews along with related critical incidents and wish list items to determine the optimum point at which exhaustiveness occurs (data collection is complete).  This has helped to operationalize the process of establishing when a sufficient sample size has been obtained.  However, this is tentative because with more extensive sampling, there is a likelihood of new categories emerging. Related to the notion of exhaustiveness, a more recent adaptation has been reported by Amundson, Borgen, and Butterfield (2013).  They suggested that the interview process need not stop after exhaustiveness has been achieved.  Thus, the additional data that is obtained when larger sample size is available can be used for making conclusions with greater confidence.   53 Amundson et al. (2013) suggested the use of summaries at the end of the three ECIT sections, which would also be used as an internal credibility check.  Transcribing these summaries without having to transcribe the full interviews can be a cost-effective way to collect more data after reaching exhaustiveness.  The current study uses the positive psychology framework in formulating the research question and focuses on the strengths and positive qualities of the participants.  A few of the studies that have integrated the theme of “doing well” from the positive psychology perspective and have used ECIT include studies related to successfully managing change at work (Borgen et al., 2010; Howard, Butterfield, Borgen, & Amundson, 2014), women who were successful in male dominated careers (Moran, 2014), immigrant women doing well with change (Koert et al., 2011), and middle managers doing well with change (Shreeve-Fawkes, Butterfield, Borgen, & Amundson, 2016). One particular adaptation that is novel to the current study was asking participants about what they wish would be available for them in the future for doing well.  This is an extension of the previous discussed addition of the wish list item from the past.  The inclusion of future wish list was deemed necessary due to the relatively young age range of participants who are continuing to make career decisions into the future.  Identifying what would help them with future career decisions would provide information about how successful immigrant young people can continue to succeed in the future. CIT and counselling psychology.  Though CIT was originally used in industrial psychology settings, soon it was picked up in other fields such as health services (Amati, Kaissi, & Hannawa, 2018; Redpath, Stacey, Pugh, & Holmes, 1997), dentistry (Santha et al., 2016), nursing (Bradbury-Jones & Tranter, 2008), digital safety and public health (Clark, Lewis,  54 Bradshaw, & Bradbury-Jones, 2018), vocational development (Bartlett & Domene, 2015; Borgen, Hatch, & Amundson, 1990), and psychotherapy (Bedi, Davis, & Williams, 2005).  This attests to the flexibility and adaptability of this method in diverse setting with varied research questions.  With the publication of Lorrete Woolsey’s (1986) article in the Canadian Journal of Counselling and Psychotherapy, researchers in the field of counselling psychology have found a methodology that fits well with their expertise in the field and can help investigate phenomenon that are more relevant to counselling and psychotherapy research such as therapeutic alliance (Bedi et al., 2005), counsellor development (Furr & Carroll, 2003), clinical supervision (Trepal, Bailie, & Leeth, 2010), and therapeutic effectiveness (Plutchik, Conte, & Karasu, 1994).  Woolsey (1986) called for researchers in the field of counselling psychology to take full advantage of methodology using descriptive inquiry such as CIT.  In fact, Woolsey advocated for developing CIT as a “methodology unique to counselling as a discipline” (p. 243).  She argued that CIT as an exploratory method had the potential for obtaining a near exhaustive description of the content domain, with sound reliability and validity, as would be expected in any good research.  Moreover, she believed that the experience and values of counselling psychology researchers aligns with this methodology and the skill set they possess is a definite advantage in conducting research using CIT.  Woolsey (1986) has also identified many advantages of CIT when applied to counselling psychology research - two of which are discussed below as it applies to the current study.  Firstly, the extent to which this qualitative methodology allows for exploratory work is a definite boon for studying areas that have not been previously researched.  Thus, the initial exploration of the domain that has not been investigated (or minimally investigated) can set the stage for more verification at a later stage using quantitative methods.  Secondly, CIT based studies provide one  55 of the best settings for theory or model building.  This is especially because CIT studies allow for extensive richness that can be captured by the categories along with maintaining the distinctiveness of each category.  Thus, CIT allows for balancing the level of specificity-generality through the categories and subcategories, which contributes to understanding the interrelationship between aspects of the content domain at multiple levels.  This, along with the multiple hypotheses and explanations that may be derived through the categorization forms the basic foundations for theory building using CIT. Philosophical and Methodological Assumptions Butterfield et al. (2005) reviewed the evolution of critical incident technique (CIT) over the fifty years since Flanagan (1954) published the landmark article on this method, and they argued that CIT meets the requirement of a qualitative research method according to the various established definitions of qualitative research (see Creswell, 2017; Denzin & Lincoln, 2002).  Butterfield et al. (2005) summarised CIT as follows: Specifically, CIT research takes place in a natural setting; the researcher is the key instrument of data collection; data are collected as words through interviewing, participant observation, and/or qualitative open-ended questions; data analysis is done inductively; and the focus is on participants’ perspectives. (p. 482) In reviewing CIT, there has been some debate over whether CIT is a method or methodology and how CIT can be positioned to elucidate its philosophical bases, especially from a paradigmatic perspective (Bradbury-Jones & Tranter, 2008; Byrne, 2001).  Viergever (2019), in a recent paper, argues that CIT is a methodology and provides evidence to support the argument.  The key difference between a method and methodology rests on whether the researcher is focusing on a specific tool for data collection (Locke, Silverman, & Spirduso, 2010)  56 as opposed to describing and evaluating the process of scientific inquiry beyond procedures of gathering data (Carter & Little, 2007).  According to Viergever (2019), CIT possesses the key dimensions that are necessary for qualifying as a methodology.  These dimensions are based on how other qualitative approaches are evaluated to be considered a methodology (see Creswell, 2007).  One of the standard methodological dimensions is a focus that is consistent with a research aim.  When the aim of a research is to explore “what helps or hinders a particular experience or activity” (Butterfield et al., 2009, p. 268), CIT is a methodology that can best help meet this aim.  It may be argued that the methodological framework of CIT stands out among other methodologies when the aim is to study helping and hindering experiences.  It is to be noted that the aim is to answer questions relating to the what and not the why of the helping and hindering factors.  Additionally, Viergever (2019) has pointed out that consistent with what is expected of a methodology, CIT “describes, explains, evaluates and justifies the use of a particular unit of analysis, particular methods for data collection, particular methods for data analysis, and a particular reporting format.” (p. 12).  Also, like other methodologies, CIT offers the possibility of using different types of data and methods of data collection.  The philosophical and practical assumptions that underlie CIT are important factors to consider while discussing the merits and contribution of this methodology that has been used by multiple disciplines since the landmark article of Flanagan.  Coming from a qualitative paradigm, ECIT shares more in terms of assumptions about the truth, nature and acquisition of knowledge, the role of the researcher, and the function of research with other interpretive methodologies.  According to Chell (1998), CIT can be used “within an interpretive or phenomenological paradigm” (p. 51) and describes it as follows:  57 The critical incident technique is a qualitative interview procedure which facilitates the investigation of significant occurrences (events, incidents, pro- cesses, or issues) identified by the respondent, the way they are managed, and the outcomes in terms of perceived effects.  The objective is to gain understanding of the incident from the perspective of the individual, taking into account cognitive, affective, and behavioral elements.  (p. 56). While all arguments are in favour of ECIT being a qualitative methodology, the same may not be true when examining ECIT’s stance from the commonly used paradigmatic framework related to the philosophy of science (see Guba & Lincoln, 1994; Ponderotto, 2005).  McDaniel, Borgen, Buchanan, Butterfield, and Amundson (2019), while reviewing ECIT from a philosophy of science framework commented that ECIT may be regarded as either post-positivist or constructivist depending on the philosophical leaning of the researcher.  In terms of ontological assumptions, the shift in CIT from focusing on behavioural observations to retrospective self-reports – as used in the current study – calls for a post-positivist or a relativist position.  In this study, however, the post-positivist position is adopted since I am attempting to account for and minimize the subjectivity that might render the perceptions, beliefs, and experiences reported by the participant far removed from ‘reality’.  While the contextual influence of participant’s experience is acknowledged I aim to understand their experience as accurately and in a less distorted way as is possible.  With regards to epistemology, personal factors affecting the interaction between the participant and the researcher is seen as a potential avenue for subjectivity and bias in how knowledge is acquired.  Hence, the quest for objectivity is seen through establishing rigour in data collection procedure and analyses.  The dependence on the interview guide and the adherence to the nine credibility checks in the current study point  58 towards valuing of objectivity that matches the post-positivist paradigm. Steps of Conducting CIT Research  There are five distinct steps that a CIT study follows, which has been initially outlined by Flanagan (1954), and later elucidated by Woolsey (1986) and Butterfield et al. (2009) with examples that are specific to counselling psychology.  These steps both help understand the process of research using CIT and also help researchers with concrete and tangible outline for conducting a CIT study.  The first step is to identify and ascertain the aim of the activity that is being studied, which is reflected in the research question and is implied in the behaviours or experiences that the participants are reporting (or being observed).  The second step focuses on setting the stage for making the implicit explicit through specifying the activities (behaviours and/or experiences) to be observed and the characteristics of the observer (or interviewer) and the participants who are engaging in the activity.  The third step outlines the procedures for collecting data that has been specified in the previous steps.  The emphasis here is on how interview guides are created, and data is stored and transcribed for later analysis.  This step must accurately reflect the aim and the criteria related to settings identified in the earlier steps and also make provision for collecting data in an organized manner to aid data analyses.  The fourth step is data analysis, which relies on inductive reasoning to arrive at thematic content.  The end result of this step is the formulation of categories that are distinctive yet possessing sufficient generality.  The fifth and final step is reporting the findings in a way that describes the categories and subcategories to highlight the content coverage of the domain in a rich and vivid way that is characteristic of qualitative studies.  Each of the above steps are discussed in detail below with the application of these steps to the current research. An important consideration in the use of CIT, which was initially suggested by Flanagan  59 (1954) and later formalized as a necessary step (see Butterfield et al., 2009), is that the critical incidents that are obtained by the participant must be both accurate and detailed.  This would be one of the very basic steps towards establishing credibility of the findings.  Without a full and precisely detailed information about the incident, it would not be appropriate to include it as a critical incident in the first place.  Hence, Flanagan (1954) suggested that when an incident is only mentioned in a vague or general manner, it may not qualify as a valid critical incident worthy of inclusion.  A few considerations during the data collection stage can ensure that this requirement is met, and almost all of the research done at UBC follows this procedure (Butterfield et al., 2005).  This involves specifically seeking information pertaining to the antecedent and the outcome that follows the incident mentioned by the participant along with a detailed description of the incident reported.  Appropriate prompts in the interview guide help to achieve the level of accuracy and detail needed for achieving this important step before the other credibility checks and evaluations of trustworthiness can be done. Trustworthiness of CIT With the increased use of CIT, specific measures were laid out by multiple researchers to increase the trustworthiness of the data collection procedure, results, and interpretation of results that came out of CIT studies.  It is interesting to note that formalization of methods consistent with Flanagan’s (1954), which increased the credibility of the CIT studies, came out of research conducted by faculty and graduate students in the Counselling Psychology program in the Department of Educational and Counselling Psychology and Special Education at the University of British Columbia.  After the initial studies conducted by Amundson and Borgen (1987, 1988), several master’s theses and doctoral dissertations using CIT have been carried out.  It was during this period that several credibility checks were introduced to increase the robustness of the  60 findings.  Butterfield et al. (2005) outlined the nine credibility checks that are currently being used.  The credibility checks are (a) audio recording the interviews, (b) interview fidelity, (c) independent extraction of critical incidents, (d) calculating exhaustiveness, (e) calculating participation rates, (f) placement of incidents into categories by an independent judge, (g) cross-checking by participants, (h) expert opinions, and (i) theoretical agreement.  The credibility checks help to ensure that the research process is trustworthy.  Each of the nine credibility checks were employed in this research and they are discussed in detail later in the chapter. Of the nine credibility checks proposed, two have to do with independent judges – familiar with CIT – who will come up with their independent lists of critical incidents and wish lists and also categorize the critical incidents and wish lists.  This procedure has been traditionally used to arrive at an agreement.  However, I believe, this method not only provides convergent evidence but also inconsistent and contradictory evidence that can add to the meaningfulness of the experiences studied.  Hence, besides aiming for convergence of evidence, this study is open to obtaining evidence that is both inconsistent and contradictory (Mathison, 1988). The credibility checks mentioned above have been incorporated from Flanagan’s times, and have been honed over the years by researchers across disciplines, including counselling psychology researchers from UBC.  It may be argued that there has been a consistent and concerted effort to implement these reliability and validity procedures.  This, not only characterizes Flanagan’s (1954) original intention with CIT, but also is in line with Woolsey’s (1986) application of the method to counselling psychology.  One of the many advantages of the formalizing these credibility checks is that it maintains the rigour and trustworthiness, which is often alleged to be lacking in qualitative research (Silverman, 2006), yet making it appropriate  61 for studying real-life issues in way that retains contextual information (Butterfield et al., 2005).   Methodological Procedures for The Current Study  Overall description of the five steps.  This study followed the five steps discussed above, commonly used in ECIT research (Butterfield et al., 2005; Flanagan, 1954).  After providing an overview of each of the five steps, the following section gives details of all the procedures used in this study to accomplish the five steps.  First step.  The beginning step was to clearly articulate the aim of the activity studied (Woolsey, 1986).  The aim is tied to the objective of the activity in which the participant is involved and it includes the expectation of outcomes resulting from the activity.  In this study the activity was to explore the process of career decision-making among immigrant young adults who are doing well in their career.  This was achieved by exploring the factors that helped and hindered the process of career decision-making.  This aim provided a frame of reference to identify the characteristics of the activity, which became evident as the participants reported incidents related to the aim and illuminated the process from their subjective perspective. Specifically, with respect to querying about critical incidents, the participants were asked, “What has helped you in doing well with making career decisions? “Are there things that have made it more difficult for you to do well in making career decisions?” and “what would have helped in the past that were not available to you, or that will help in the future if they become available?” Second step.  This step involved making plans and setting specifications.  This was achieved through creating an interview guide for the participants.  The interview guide for the current study is appended (Appendix D).  This resource specified how the information was gathered and the relevance of observations to the aim of the study.   62 Third step.  The next step in ECIT is collecting data.  Data was collected in-person and over the telephone.  In using the ECIT, the first interview is crucial (Butterfield et al., 2009).  I conducted an interview of approximately 90 minutes in length utilizing ECIT and obtained a description of what helped or hindered participants’ career decision-making processes and what might have helped (Butterfield, et al., 2009).  The interview provided a context for understanding the critical incidents and the wish lists. In the first part of the interview, before the ECIT portion of the interview, rapport was established, and the contextual questions were asked.  The contextual question pertained to knowing what the participants’ definition of career and doing well with career decision-making was.  The contextual questions helped the participants to get oriented to the aim of the study (Woolsey, 1986) and ease them into the interview.  It also helped to clarify the subjective definition that each participant held with regards to the meaning of career and doing well in career decision-making.  Their responses to the contextual data also provided some background for analyzing the ECIT results as is consistent with the ECIT methodology (Butterfield et al., 2009).  I wanted the participant to know that I did not have a set definition of career in my mind and I was open to any definition of career they considered relevant or applicable.  The interview guide with sample probes aided the interviewer in eliciting the data for the contextual questions as well as the ECIT interview.  Clarifying questions and follow-up questions were asked throughout and it was expected to make the data rich and thick in terms of both the critical incidents and the contexts.  These questions and probes emerged as the interview progressed.  Sometimes it is beneficial to restrict the incidents to a particular time frame (e.g., in the previous year).  On other occasions, participants may report any incident that they can bring to memory.  In the current study there was no restriction on the time frame since I believed that  63 career decision-making is a process of life-design (Savickas, 2012).  In any case it was assumed that when participants were able to remember an incident, it was salient for them and hence it was an important piece of data.  They were encouraged to report the incident in as much detail as they could remember.  For logistical purposes, a running count of incidents was kept and after several critical incidents were collected, categories were created that could help group similar incidents.  As more data was collected incidents were placed either into existing categories or new categories were created.  Data collection stopped when newly available incidents were all being placed into existing categories and no new categories could be formed. While there is reason enough to believe that our recollections of events are influenced by the vagaries of memory (Jahn & Henning, 2007), I was not particularly careful to separate ‘accurate’ memories from ‘inaccurate’ ones.  Also, the specification of the location in which an incident occurs may or may not be important depending upon the aim.  Other specificities of the incident such as behaviours (individual or shared), communications, reactions, and impact were spelt out to the participants to observe (retrospectively) and report and often the researcher elicited details that have not been specified by the participant (Woolsey, 1986).  After each incident was reported, I prompted the participant to report how the incident helped or hindered the outcome.  Here, I was interested in knowing how the incident contributed to the aim or the outcome in a way that the participant believed to be important.  The interview ended with obtaining demographic data and background information from the participants.  The specific information sought, and the responses of the participants are presented later in this chapter. Fourth step.  The next step involved analyzing the data.  This was accomplished by organizing the raw data for identifying the critical indents and the wish lists.  The interviews were audio-recorded and transcribed verbatim and stored using an encrypted password-only  64 computer-based software program (ATLAS.ti, Version 8, 2017).  The critical incidents were extracted from the transcripts.  The data-analysis procedure in the critical incident technique followed the inductive reasoning process similar to most interpretive research methods.  The data analysis yielded a detailed description of the activities that eventually helped me arrive at themes at the broadest level that explained the activities in relation to the aim. The incidents reported by the participants were believed to be meaningful for the participant; I, through inductive procedures, attempted to capture the meaning associated with the incidents in relation to the aim of the activities reported (Sharoff, 2008).  The frame of reference created by the research question helped to focus on the aim of the activities reported by the participants.  The interview questions were thus designed to elicit information related to the relevant incidents in the life of the participants and their assumptive world (Norman, Redfern, Tomalin, & Oliver, 1992).  The objective was to obtain a near-to-complete coverage of the content domain.  Categories were made to group together similar critical incidents and wish lists.  The data analysis followed the steps outlined by Flanagan (1954): (a) determining the frame of reference; (b) organizing and coding the raw data by identifying critical incidents and wish list items, then formulating the categories derived from grouping similar incidents; and (c) determining the level of specificity or generality to be used in reporting the results (p. 271).  Fifth Step.  The final step was interpreting the data and reporting the results.  Here, ECIT departs from the classic CIT process outlined by Flanagan.  Butterfield et al. (2009) introduced nine credibility checks, which were employed in this study.   Description of the sample.  The participants for the study consisted of immigrant young people (ages 25 - 35) who moved to Canada in their early teens (13-17 years) and at the time of  65 the study were presently living in the Lower Mainland of BC.  The age range for immigrants with respect to when they moved to Canada was decided on the assumption that this range is most reflective of mixed education and multiple cultural exposure (Anisef, Sweet, & Frempong, 2003).  The sample size was 18 and is consistent with the sample size in typical CIT studies (Butterfield et al., 2005).  Researchers using the critical incident technique pay more attention to adequately sampling incidents and are less concerned about actual participant sample size (Bott & Tourish, 2016; Woolsey, 1986). Table 1 provides a summary of the basic demographic characteristics of the sample.  Participants’ ages ranged from 25 to 35 years (mean age = 28.44; SD = 3.39).  The majority of participants were single (14 or 78%) and female (12 or 66%).  The annual household income of 15 participants who reported their income ranged from $0 (Student) to $140,000 (median = $70,000), and three participants declined to provide this information in dollar value.  The education levels included 16 participants (89%) with at least a bachelor’s degree.  One participant reported completing a trade diploma (red seal) and one participant did not study beyond high school.  Four participants (22%) had two bachelor’s degrees and 8 participants (44%) in the sample either had a master’s degree or were pursuing a master’s degree at the time of the interview.  The participants in the current study came from 11 different countries: Korea, China, Taiwan, India, Hong Kong, Iran, Fiji, Switzerland, Israel, Colombia, and the United States of America.  Participants who immigrated to Canada from Korea represented the largest number of participants coming from any one country (22%).  However, the most cited first language was mandarin (28%), followed by equal number of participants who reported Korean and English as their first language (22%).  Other first languages cited included Hindi, Farsi,  66 Swiss German, Spanish, and Malayalam (a south Indian language).  The number of years the participants have been in Canada ranged from 7 years to 21 years (Mean = 13.27; SD = 4.21). The participants in the current study reported working in ten different professional activity areas: education, health care/science, information technology/communication, mental health, investment, advocacy, religion, merchandizing, customer service, and chip design.  The most frequently cited professional area was education (4/18 or 22%) and health care (4/18 or 22%).  Also, five of the participants (28%) were in school at the time of the interview.     67 Table 1   Summary of Basic Demographic Data Participant No. Age Sex Marital Status Education Country of Origin First Language Years in Canada Family Income Professional activity Professional Activity (area) 1 26 M Single High School Israel English 12 $19,000 Stock shelves in stores (on disability) Merchandizing 2 25 M Single Culinary red seal; diploma in business administration India English 10 (Middle Class) Flight attendant  Customer Service 3 25 F Single Bachelor of General Science (Life science); Bachelor of Nursing (ongoing) Korea Korean 13 No Income Nursing student Health care 4 35 M Single Bachelor of Commerce; Bachelor of Education; Master of Counselling Psychology (ongoing) Switzerland Swiss German 21 $85,000 Secondary School Teacher; Master’s in Counselling Student Education 5 25 F Single Bachelor of  Applied Science Iran Farsi 11 $75,000 Computer/Software Engineer Chip Design 6 25 F Married Bachelor of Sociology Unites States English 7 $50,000 Staff Positions (Human Resource) Contributing to a health Society; Helping Profession 7 27 F Single Bachelor of Science; Master of Science (ongoing) China Mandarin 10 No Income Graduate student Health Sciences  68 Participant No. Age Sex Marital Status Education Country of Origin First Language Years in Canada Family Income Professional activity Professional Activity (area) 8 31 F Married Master of Science Korea Korean 16 $111,000 Communications related to technology and research; genetic counsellor Health Care 9 26 M Single Bachelor of Science; Master of Divinity (ongoing) Korea Korean 10 $60,000 Pastor (young adults); work at Church Global Mission Network 10 33 F Single Bachelor of Economics Hong Kong Mandarin 17 $70,000 Principal consultant of company Education 11 29 M Single Master of Engineering (Robotics) China Mandarin 16 Entry-level Software Development Information Technology 12 33 F Single Master of Social Work Taiwan English 20 Prefer Not to Say Management; Project Co-ordination Advocacy Work 13 26 M Single Bachelor of Education Fiji Hindi 9 $120,000 Corporate Branch Manager Investment 14 28 F Single Bachelor of Arts; Master of Education (Counselling, Ongoing) Korea Korean 15 $60,000 to $70,000 Counselling Psychology (Student) Mental Health 15 27 F Single Bachelor of Education Taiwan Mandarin 10 $80,000 Assistant to Department Head; Education  69 Participant No. Age Sex Marital Status Education Country of Origin First Language Years in Canada Family Income Professional activity Professional Activity (area) Undergraduate Program Assistant 16 34 F Common-Law Master of Experimental Medicine Taiwan Mandarin 20 $140,000 Communications Coordinator; Freelance web developer; Non-profit Communications 17 30 F Married Bachelor of Nursing India Malayalam 12 $96,000 Student Nursing 18 27 F Single Bachelor of Business Administration (HR); Bachelor of Business Administration (International Business) Colombia Spanish 10 $50,000 Human Resources Education     70  Inclusion criteria.  To be included in the study, the participants had to be first-generation immigrant young adults – more accurately, 1.5 generation immigrants, as described below – who were between 25 and 35 years of age at the time of the interview and who self-identified as doing well with their career decision-making.  Other inclusion criteria were that they had moved to Canada in their early teens (13-17 years) and that they understand written and spoken English.  Sometimes, immigrant young people who came to Canada in their teens are referred to as the 1.5 generation (Shields & Lujan, 2018).  Previous studies of immigrants to Canada reveal that those who immigrated before they were 10-12 years of age share experiences that are more similar to youth born in Canada, compared with those who moved after 10-12 years of age (Cheung, Chudek, & Heine, 2011).  This justifies the criteria for the age range related to when they came to Canada. Participant recruitment.  Participants were recruited with the assistance of immigrant serving agencies and career-based organizations.  Additionally, standard third-party recruitment methods – posters and advertisements in coffee shops, libraries, local newspapers, shopping malls, and health clinics – were used.  Advertisements on social media sites such as Facebook pages and LinkedIn were also used, as well as advertisements on Craigslist and Kijiji.  I used the snowball sampling technique.  Initial participants were asked whether they knew any individuals who were likely to be interested in the study.  If they knew of others and were willing to contact them, they were given recruitment posters (Appendix A). With respect to determining who would serve as a good participant and also how many participants would be required to adequately cover the content domain, the guiding     71  principle was to capture as much diversity of experiences as possible rather than looking for a representative sample.  The inclusion of respondents who have experiences that were less shared by the other participants helped to extend the coverage of the content domain.  Also, since the size of the sample in CIT was fairly small, the aim was to obtain a wide range of activities that can inform the outcome and eventually help in theorizing (Bott & Tourish, 2016).  Hence, deciding to recruit participants who were more different than similar was likely to produce more extensive data since there would be a less systematic way by which the participants and the incidents are related. Participant screening.  When a potential participant expressed interest in being part of the study, they were screened through a phone interview to determine whether they met the inclusion criteria.  A screening questionnaire was used for this purpose (Appendix B).  The questions asked were: • Are you willing to talk about your experiences?  • Are you aged 25 to 35 years?  • Are you willing to spend approximately 1.5 hours for the first interview?  • Are you available for a thirty minutes second contact in 6-9 months?  • Are you able to converse in and read English?  • Do you identify as doing well in making career decisions?  • Do you identify as a first-generation immigrant?  • Did you move to Canada between 13-17 years of age?  Participants in this study were those who answered in the affirmative for all the questions above.     72  Data collection procedures.  After obtaining written informed consent and permission to audio record the interviews (Appendix C), participants were interviewed with the ECIT interview.  The participants were provided with the information about the study and the consent form no less than 24 hours before they were interviewed.  Since the present study required the participants to be interviewed twice, they were informed of both of the interviews and consent was obtained at the time of initial contact, and before the second interview they were provided with information concerning their ongoing consent to participate in the research.  The first interview was a formal semi-structured interview that lasted approximately 1 to 1.5 hours, and interviews were held as per the schedule prepared based on the availability of the researcher and the participant.  The second interview was conducted over the email, approximately 6-9 months after the first interview. The interviews took place in offices, community centres, libraries, or other locations convenient for the interviewees to be audiotaped.  Telephone interviews were conducted when in-person interviews were not possible.  Telephone interviews, in the past, have been found to yield reliable responses from participants (Borgen, et al., 2010; Buchanan & Keats, 2011; Conn, 2015). First interview.  The first interview was a semi-structured qualitative interview with three parts.  Throughout the interview I reflected back the words and phrases of the participants to highlight their experience as expressed in their own words.  Also, every effort was taken to prevent asking leading questions or suggesting what would be an appropriate or acceptable response.  I continued to wait for the participants to articulate their thoughts and kept inviting the participants to share as much as they could until they     73  did not have anything more to share.  The interview guide (Appendix D) was followed to facilitate the interview, especially with regards to the probes for each of the three parts of the interview. Part one.  In the first part of the interview the contextual questions pertaining to their personal definition of career and the meaning of doing well with career decision-making was asked, which was described before.  They were asked: “We are not just interested in long-term paid careers, but in any type of role whether it is paid or unpaid, long or short, including jobs, work, employment, positions, volunteering, care-giving, working in the home, trade, fringe work, or anything else you can think of.” 1. Can you tell me what career means to you in the context of your own life?  2. Can you tell me what doing well with career decision-making means to you?  At the end of contextual questions, participants were asked the scaling question:  “On a scale of 0 – 10, where 0 is doing very poorly with making career decisions, 5 is OK, and 10 is doing very well, where would you place yourself?” They were also asked to provide a rationale for their scaling response.  The scaling question is a pre-post question, asked at the beginning and at the end of the ECIT interview, and it examined if the recalling of critical incidents based on the interview had an effect on the participant in terms of how they perceived themselves as doing well with career decision-making (Butterfield, Borgen, & Amundson, 2009).  Part two.  The second part of the interview was the ECIT interview that helped elicit the critical incidents and the wish list items.  The interview questions focused on how the participants have made career decisions in the past, what has helped or hindered     74  them in the decision-making process, and what would have helped their career decision-making if it were available to them.  Examples of questions asked for the helping and hindering part of the interview are given below 1. What has helped (or hindered) you in doing well with making career decisions?  (Probes: What was the incident/factor? What does it mean to you?) 2. How was it helping (or hindering)? (Probes: Tell me what it was about . . . that you find helpful (or hindering) 3. Can you give me a specific example of how that helped you to do well (or hindered you from doing well) in making career decisions? (Probes: What led up to the incident? What was the outcome of incident?) With regards to the interview question for the wish list items, the examples include 1. Are there other things that would have helped in the past that were not available to you, or that will help in the future if they become available? (Probe: I wonder what else might be helpful to you that you haven’t had access to?) 2. How would it help? (Probe: Tell me what it is about … that you would find helpful?) 3. Can you give me a specific example of how that would have helped you (or would help in the future) to do well in making career decisions? (Probe: In what circumstances might this be helpful?)     75  To ensure that that participants had the opportunity to fully elaborate on the helping and hindering incidents and wish list items, along with the importance of the incident and a relevant example the responses of the participants were recorded in the interview guide in three separate columns based on the questions above (see Appendix D).  This helped in quickly checking whether the critical incidents were elaborately described (Butterfield et al., 2009) and cross check with the interview transcripts.  At the end of the ECIT interview, the scaling question was asked again.  This was done to examine if the reporting of the incidents affected their perception of doing well with career decision-making.  Also, if there was a difference in rating between the first and the second time the scaling questions were asked, the participants were asked “What’s made the difference?” Additionally, all the participants were also asked “Have you always done well with making career decisions?” and if they responded “No” to this question, they were further asked “If not, when did this change for you?” and “What happened that caused you to begin handling career decisions well?” These questions were intended to identify any significant events in their life or career development path that have contributed towards bringing about a shift to doing well with career decision-making Part three.  The third part of the interview was dedicated for collecting demographic information.  The initial questions in this part of the interview pertained to what career-related activities they were engaged in and for how long.  They were free to state anything from a professional job title to a role or activity that gave them meaning.  I noted whatever activity or title they associated career with.  They were also asked to specify a broader field to which their career related activities belonged.  For example,     76  they were asked “For each activity, is it part of anything larger in the world like an area, field, industry, project, or movement?” Again, the participants own words were used to identify the larger field and there were no pre-assigned categories into which their responses were classified into.  Other questions in the demographic section included age, gender, country of origin, income, marital status, family status, education, and how long they have been in Canada. Second interview.  The second interview was conducted over email and the participants were provided the critical incidents and wish list items along with the category title and description for each of the incidents they reported.  They were asked the following questions, which were suggested by Butterfield et al. (2009) • Are the helping/hindering critical incidents (factors) and wish list items correct?  • Is anything missing?  • Is there anything that needs revising?  • Do you have any other comments?  • Do the category headings make sense to you?  • Do the category headings capture your experience and the meaning that the incident or factor had for you?  • Are there any incidents in the categories that do not appear to fit from your perspectives? If so, where do you think they belong?  Data analysis procedures.  Thematic Analyses.  The contextual results were analyzed using the thematic analysis following Braun and Clarke’s (2006) method.  Braun and Clarke have provided a step-by-step procedure for analyzing data in six phases.  These six phases were followed     77  in the analysis of contextual data, which is summarized here.  I began thematic analysis by familiarizing myself with the data (phase 1), after which the initial codes were generated (phase 2), and then the codes were organized according to similarities with reference to the contextual questions (phase 3).  In the next step the coded groupings were reviewed and were clustered/sorted into categories that were meaningful and related (phase 4).  The categories were further reviewed by refining and integrating similarly defined categories producing main themes.  Finally, the themes were defined and named (phase 5); data within each theme was analyzed and a detailed analysis of each theme was done.  The themes are reported in the results chapter (phase 6).  The careful application of this method involving all the six phases contributes to the trustworthiness of this method of analysis. Creation of ECIT categories.  ECIT analyses encompass formation of categories from the critical incidents and wish list items reported by the participants (Butterfield et al., 2009; Flanagan, 1954; Woolsey, 1986).  The data analysis procedure for the ECIT data followed the three steps provided by Flanagan (1954).  First step.  The initial step comprised of determining the frame of reference, which involved deciding the intended purpose of the results and the audience for whom the results were intended (Butterfield et al., 2005; Woolsey, 1986).  In the current study the frame of reference was set in a way to increase our understanding of the career development process of immigrant young people, specifically those who self-define as doing well with career decision-making.  The intended purpose of the results was to both develop theory, inform career counselling practice, and suggest further research as it applies to this population.      78  Second Step.  The next step was the inductive process of sorting the incidents into similar and meaningful clusters.  This process of category formation began midway through the data collection process.  After the initial interviews were conducted and the audio recordings of the interviews were transcribed, the initial coding of data was done using the ATLAS.ti (Version 8, 2017) software.  The coding of the critical incidents were done keeping to the words and phrases of the participants themselves.  Interview transcripts were coded in groups of three and tentative categories that emerged were logged.  The category formation process continued until exhaustiveness was reached.  The number of critical incidents and wish list items along with the participation rates were considered in this process.  Third Step.  The final step in data analysis was to arrive at a level of generality that keeps the distinctiveness of the category, but also provides enough specificity that the richness of the category is maintained.  A few of the credibility checks mentioned below deal with discussing the appropriateness of category formation both from the perspective of the participants and the experts in the field. Credibility checks.  Flanagan (1954) recommended that researchers using CIT have the responsibility to establish credibility and trustworthiness.  Over the years, with further changes and adaptations to CIT, one of the positive outcomes has been the formalization of nine credibility checks that have been elaborated by Butterfield et al. (2005).  Though some of these credibility checks have been suggested by Flanagan (1954) and other researchers working with CIT have earlier recorded its use (see Alfonso, 1997; Andersson & Nilsson, 1964; Borgen & Amundson, 1984; Eilbert, 1953; Morley, 2003), the protocol for the nine credibility checks has come out of the research work at     79  UBC (Butterfield et al., 2005).  The nine credibility checks are discussed below with reference to its application to the current study. The first credibility check is instituted to ensure the accuracy of participant reports and prevent the researcher from imposing their own interpretation on what the participants stated.  The words and phrases of the participants are retained through recording of the interviews and using interview transcripts to maintain the accuracy of participant statements (Maxwell, 1992).  Also, as mentioned earlier, the participants get an opportunity to confirm whether the incidents they reported match with the categories created by the researcher.  In this study all the interviews were audio recorded and transcribed.  The transcripts were also checked back with the recordings.  The second credibility check, which has been attributed to studies coming out of the University of British Columbia (UBC, Butterfield, 2006), is designed to ensure that the interviewers are indeed following the CIT method.  An advantage of following this procedure to establish interviewer fidelity is that all the interviewers are consistent in how data is collected in accordance with the CIT method and would also safeguard the possibility of interviewers leading the participants through questions and inferences that deviate from the CIT protocol of data collection.  In the current study an ECIT expert listened to the first interview and a graduate student trained in the ECIT method listened to the initial three interviews to determine whether I was following the ECIT method in my interviews and did not ask leading questions.  The feedback from the expert and the graduate student was that I was consistent in keeping with the method as required when following the interview guide. The third credibility check is designed to ensure that the selection of critical     80  incidents is not exclusively dependant on what the researcher believes is critical for the aim of the activity.  Hence, a person who is familiar with CIT is asked to extract the critical incidents independent of the researcher.  However, for the sake of effectiveness and to avoid loss of time and cost, only 25 percent of the critical incidents in the study were independently extracted by the external coder.  If there is a high level of agreement – called the concordance rate – between the researcher and the external person, we can safely assume that the incidents identified are indeed critical to the aim of the activity previously identified.  In the current study the concordance rate was 100%.  The high concordance rate not only points to the high credibility in identifying the critical incidents but also shows the significance of the incidents to the aim of the activity.   The fourth credibility check is a method to identify the point at which data collection can stop because the critical incidents now available do not contribute towards a new category.  This happens when the domain under consideration is adequately represented by the incidents and have reached a point of redundancy or exhaustiveness.  This credibility check involves tracking the interview transcripts that are recently available and checking to see whether the recent critical incidents fit into already existing categories or they need newer categories.  When no new categories are formed the researcher can conclude with some confidence that the domain is covered.  In the current study, no new categories emerged after data from the 15th participant was analyzed; data collection continued for another 3 more participants until it was decided that the likelihood of any new category emerging from additional participants was unlikely.  The fifth credibility check is related to the process of decision-making about whether a category is valid or not.  One of the methods is to calculate the participation     81  rate by identifying the percentage of participants who mentioned at least one incident belonging to that category.  If the participation rate is higher, then the likelihood of that category being a valid category for the given aim is higher.  Focusing on the number of participants rather than the number of incidents helps to get a better representation from the sample, increasing the trustworthiness of the category.  According to Borgen and Amundson (1984), the minimum participation rate of 25 percent may be considered an appropriate benchmark for determining the validity of the category.  In the current study all the nine categories have a minimum participation rate of 25% for at least one of the helping, hindering, or wish list incidents.  That is, at least 5 out of 18 participants reported incidents that were all helping incident, hindering incidents or wish list items belonging to any given category. The sixth credibility check pertains to the process of data analysis, particularly to verify whether the placement of the incidents into categories can be independently validated.  This involves asking an external person to place 25 percent of randomly selected incidents into the tentative categories formed by the researcher.  To help make the judgement the external person was provided with the category names and descriptions.  The greater the agreement between the researcher’s placement and that of the external person, the greater the confidence in the categories created.  In the current study, the independent judge was a graduate student who was trained in ECIT and used the methodology in research before.  I provided the independent judge randomly selected 56 incidents on slips of paper, which were approximately 25% of a total of 225 incidents.  I also provided category titles with their description pasted on 10 envelopes, for each of the categories that were initially identified.  I asked the judge to place the slips of paper in     82  the appropriate envelope.  I also asked the judge to comment and indicate whether the description of categories was clear.  Initially, the independent judge placed 12 items (86% concordance) in categories that were different from mine.  After discussion with the judge, it became clear that one of the categories was producing the most discrepancy in categorization and it overlapped with another category.  Hence, I decided to eliminate that category, and finally settle on 9 categories rather than 10.  Also, after reviewing the transcripts and discussing with the judge, it was decided that two of the incidents that were differently categorized by me and the judge could be placed in the original category I had initially placed.  Hence, the final concordance rate was 99%. The seventh credibility check allows the participants in the study to verify whether the analysis of the results match with their experience.  It is possible that when the critical incidents are organized into categories, they depart from the expressed or unexpressed meaning associated with the incidents.  Hence, during the second interview, participants are provided with the categories, the definition of categories and the critical incidents they reported that belong to each of the categories that are developed.  This participant cross-checking, first introduced by Alfonso (1997), also provides an opportunity for the participants to further elaborate or even modify the critical incidents, given the broad organization of these incidents.  In this study, after the second interview 9 more incidents were added, and the total number of incidents increased from 225 to 234.  Four participants provided additional incidents – 1 helping, 4 hindering, and 4 wish list items.  Two participants did not respond to the request for the second interview. The eighth credibility check involves consulting experts in the field to examine the usefulness of the categories along with their reaction to the categories based on their     83  familiarity with the domain.  They may report what they find surprising with any of the categories or even what is missing based on what they would have expected to see.  The credibility of the categories is increased when there is greater agreement that can be obtained by the experts.  For the current study experts in the field from immigrant career development were presented with the results and there was an agreement between what was found and what the experts expected to find.  Preliminary findings of this study were also presented at national and international conferences, and several researchers conveyed that the categories seemed consistent with their experience with immigrant career decision-making and that the categories were comprehensive. The ninth and final credibility check looks for a match between the obtained results and the existing theory documented in literature.  This is also referred to as theoretical validity (Maxwell, 1992).  This process of validation applies to both the underlying assumptions that were used in formulating the research questions along with examining the categories to check for its agreement with the literature (Butterfield, 2009).  While theoretical agreement is desirable, the researchers can also expect novel findings that go beyond or sometimes even contradict the literature.  This is consistent with the exploratory nature of CIT studies.  For the current study the categories obtained were compared with literature in the field.  It can be expected that some of the findings are not represented in literature and they are examined in the discussion chapter. Conclusion  In this chapter, the selection, rationale, description and application of the methodology was discussed.  The evolution of ECIT was traced and the suitability of the method for the current research problems was discussed along with the philosophical and     84  methodological considerations.  A detailed description of the procedures used for collecting, analyzing and reporting data has been included along with the demographic details of the participants in the study.  The chapter concludes with the measures used to ascertain trustworthiness of the results using the ECIT credibility checks.     85  Chapter Four: Results Overview of Results  In this chapter, the summary of participant responses is presented pertaining to the three main components of the interview – the contextual component, the ECIT results, and the impact of the interview on the participants in terms of the differences in responses to the pre- and post- interview scaling questions.  In this chapter is also discussed the unsolicited comments participants made during the interview.  The Contextual Results The contextual questions were expected to contribute to the study in three specific ways, besides helping the participants feel accustomed with the interview setting and building rapport for the purpose of open communication.  The first purpose of the contextual questions was to help the participants define what career means to them.  They were invited to describe career in any way they thought relevant based on their experiences and their personal understanding of the word “career”.  The second purpose was for them to articulate in their own words what doing well meant to them.  Since all the participants in the study had stated that they were doing well with career decision-making, and they could use their own standard for defining what doing well meant, the semi-structured format of the interviews was prepared to elicit information with regards to their personal definition. The third purpose of the contextual questions was to know whether the participants were always doing well with career decision-making, and if not, were there any particular events or factors that contributed towards the change. These results are expected to provide a broader understanding of the critical incidents, which they mentioned as helpful, hindering, or they wished were available.     86  What does career mean? When participants were asked to state what career meant, they were informed that the researcher did not have a set definition of what career meant and was open to their definition and meaning of the term career.  Moreover, they were provided with examples of different roles, positions, and activities that may contribute to what makes a career.  Responses provided by the participants yielded 67 codes, which were initially grouped as 12 themes using Braun and Clarke’s (2006) method of thematic analysis.  A detailed description of the method and the trustworthiness of the analysis is outlined in Chapter 3.  These themes were later grouped as four major themes.  Table 2 outlines the themes and subthemes with the participation rate and frequency. Planned integration of interests, skills, and experience in the work role.  This was the largest main theme and this theme had a participation rate of 67% represented by 22 items.  The following four subthemes were identified, and each subtheme is described with illustrative sample quotations hereunder in more detail: (a) professional/work role, (b) long-term and planning, (c) relationship of career to skills and training, and (d) daily routine/activity.  The largest of the subthemes was professional/work role or job (33% participation rate and 8 items).  Career here is defined as the professional role attached to one’s job and it could include multiple roles in diverse settings.  The unifying idea here is that career may be a means for individuals to “fit in culturally” (Participant 10, Age 33, Hong Kong) so as to fulfill the roles that make up the world of work.  This subtheme reflects one of the definitions of career as not different from one’s job title and the label attached to the role at work.      87  Table 2  Themes Related to What Career Means Main Themes and Subthemes Participant Rate (%) Frequency (#) Planned Integration of Interests, Skills, and  Experience in Work Role  67 22 Professional/Work role or job 33 8 Long-term/Planning 27 9 Related to Skills and Training 16 3 Daily Routine/Activity 11 2 Personal Fulfilment and Identity 56 17 Personal Enjoyment/Happiness/Fulfillment   27 6 Meaning/Purpose of Life 22 4 Identity/Life-passion  16 7 Means of Living & Monetary Stability 50 15 Monetary Gain/Supports Living  50 12 Means to an End 16 3 More Than Self-gain or Identifiable Job 50 13 Beyond a Job  33 6 Beyond Financial Gains  16 3 Impacting Society 11 4  The second largest subtheme here was long-term and planning (27% participation and 9 items).  This subtheme reflected what many participants believed in terms of the length of years that went into the making of a career.  There was a mention of the “years of research and studying” (Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland) that was necessary for attaining one’s career. The participants recognized that they had to plan years ahead and     88  had to make a commitment with regards to educational paths and experiences to reach their career goals.  This also meant that career involved a “series of professional decision-making” (Participant 7, Age 27, China), which had long-term implications and would directly affect what you did “most of your life” (Participant 5, Age 25, Iran).  The third subthemes under this category was the relationship of career to skills and training (16% participation rate and 3 items).  This implies that career is intricately connected with the skills you possess and training you have acquired.  Also, relevant is your interests, which contributes to the motivational component of career.  Career thus is defined with respect to developing skills using educational opportunities and applying those skills in a field of interest. The fourth subtheme was daily routine activity (11% participant rate and 2 items).  These included participants reporting that career could be best understood as the work that you do daily during the week, which keeps you occupied.  This also implies the routine attached to people’s daily schedule.  These four subthemes together reflect one of the major themes identified in the responses of the participants sharing their subjective definition of career.  It captures the essence of people making at attempt to engage in culturally appropriate work roles that facilitate the use of individual skills and experiences acquired through education and training. Personal fulfilment and identity.  The second major theme for the meaning of career was personal fulfilment and identity, represented by 56% of the participants and there were 17 items in this theme.  There were three subthemes under this category, and they were (a) personal enjoyment, happiness, and fulfillment (b) meaning and purpose of life, and (c) identity and life passion.  The first subtheme of personal enjoyment,     89  happiness, and fulfillment had a participation rate of 27% (6 items).  The conceptualization of career in this subtheme emphasized the role of enjoyment, satisfaction, and fulfilment.  Personal happiness was considered an important dimension in the context of career-related activities and career as a whole.  Most of the reference to the meaning of career here was to the different activities that were fun and enjoyable.  The second subtheme was identified as meaning and purpose of life that career offers (22% participation rate and 4 items).  Participants mentioned that career involves “doing something worthwhile” (Participant 2, Age 25, India).  Career is seen as relating to the purpose of life and there is meaning of life, which career is associated with.  One participant stated that career is “knowing why you want what you want” (Participant 3, Age 25, Korea).  The third subtheme under this category was identity and life passion (16% participation rate and 7 items).  Here, the underlying tone was that life and career is inseparable and “your life is defined by your career” (Participant 8, Age 31, Korea).  Moreover, the implication of career decision-making was seen to directly impact how life is experienced.  According to one of the participants (Participant 16, Age 34, Taiwan), “career and personal life (is) connected by passion”.  Hence, the key to understanding the meaning of career is to understand what an individual is passionate about.  This also means that the combination of different activities and interests that the individual is passionate about recapitulates career of that person.  This subtheme recognized that there can be multiple passions and different work contexts that could fulfill the different passions, which taken together is what career means.  What tied together the different subthemes was the very close connection between personal identity and career.  It was as     90  though the self was intertwined with the various facets of career and experiencing fulfilment in these facets was akin to meaningfulness and life satisfaction. Means of living and monetary stability.  This third main theme had a participant rate of 50% and there were 15 items in this category.  The first of the two subthemes in this category was monetary gain and supports living.  The concept of career that stand out here is that the basic function of a career is to help “pay bills” (Participant 1) and “provide enough money to live” (Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland).  This subtheme echoed the sentiments of at least half the participants (50% participation rate and 12 items) who believed that career needed to be defined in the most basic way, which is to help make money to support living and meeting the needs of the family.  This also means that there is stability in the job and some certainty about income from work.  Financial stability here is not merely seen as an end goal in itself, but also includes enough money to support oneself while gaining education and training towards the desired occupational goal.  The second subtheme was envisaging career as a means to an end (16% participation rate and 3 items).  This alludes to seeing life goals as more important than career and believing that career is a viable means to achieve those goals of life.  One of the participants mentioned “individual freedom” (Participant 17, Age 30, India) as a goal that would require success at career.  Hence, the meaning of career is reflected through the what career can make possible rather than what career is.  This main theme looks at career from a pragmatic framework.  From this outlook, career fulfillment may not be possible until it can provide the necessary financial stability and is instrumental in helping people reach their personal goals.      91  The fourth and final theme that was obtained from the responses of participants describes what career meant to them and was stated as more than self-gain or an identifiable job.  The three subthemes in this category were (a) beyond a job, (b) beyond financial gains, and (c) impacting society, and the participant rate for this main theme was 50% with 13 items.  The first of the subthemes (beyond a job) had a participation rate of 33% with 6 items.  In this subtheme it was made clear that career is more than a job and the difference between career and job was emphasized.  Though the reason for the difference is captured in the other themes, the strong assertion of the participants reiterating the difference has been outlined in this subtheme.  Some of the ways in which career is understood to be more than a job is by recognizing the role of “hobbies and other interests” (Participant 9, Age 26, Korea), which may go “beyond a job title” (Participant 9, Age 26, Korea) and include activities such as “volunteering” (Participant 12, Age 33, Taiwan), one for which you essentially are not paid.  So, according to this subtheme, career was more linked to pursuing tasks and activities that go beyond a job title.  The second subtheme here was noted as beyond financial gains (16% participation rate and 3 items).  This subtheme is similar to the previous one in that it defines career more in terms of identifiable and tangible factors – here it being money.  The notion that career goes beyond monetary terms, speaks to the value of career, which like many other human qualities such as happiness is subjectively experienced and may not be evaluated using objective standards such as money.  The third subtheme in this category was impacting society (11% participation and 4 items).  The definition of career here extends to the possible “contribution to society”     92  (Participant 3, Age 25, Korea), which envisions the impact of individual careers towards betterment of society.  Another participant (Participant 2, Age 25, India) mentioned the role of a career in “bettering life and people”.  The three subthemes summarized a dimension of career that is more altruistic rather than selfish and attends to the essence of career in a more universal and non-materialistic way.  This main theme is somewhat in contrast to the previous main theme, which sees career from a monetary angle and as a means to satisfy personal needs and goals. These four main themes along with the subthemes helped to get a clearer picture about what career meant for the participants in this study.  These definitions, as far as possible, take into consideration their contextual realities and are obtained from their personal descriptions with minimal input from the researcher. What does doing well mean? Similar to the previous question about career, the participants were also asked to define what doing well meant for them.  Again, the purpose was to understand the meaning of doing well as fully as possible from the perspective of the participants.  Using thematic analysis, as with the previous question, the responses of the participants with regards to what they meant by doing well with career decision-making was summarized into eight themes (52 items), which were later categorized as three main themes (Table 3).  Successful choice and outcome.  This was the main theme with the largest participation rate of 67% with 23 items.  This theme identified doing well in terms of career success or decision-making that turned out well.  They considered themselves as doing well in the light of a desirable career situation that they believe was positive and consistent with their idea of accomplishment.  There were four subthemes under this      93  Table 3  Themes Related to What Doing Well Means Main Themes and Sub Themes Participant Rate (%) Frequency (#) Successful Choice and Outcomes 67 23 Decision-making/Informed Choice  33 10 Financial Stability/Prospects  22 5 Positive Outcome  22 4 Working in the Field of Training/Experience  17 4 Satisfaction and Meaningfulness 67 19 Satisfaction & Enjoyment 39 13 Doing Meaningful Work/Diverse Experience  28 6 Advancement and Future Growth 39 10 Anticipating Positive Future 22 5 Progress (Career & Personal) 17 5  category: (a) decision-making and informed choice, (b) financial stability or prospects, (c) positive outcome, and (d) working in field of training or experience.  Each of the subthemes is discussed below with the representative quotes. The topmost subthemes of decision-making and informed choice had a participation rate of 33% (10 items).  This subtheme focused on the decision-making process of the participants in reflecting the meaning of doing well.  The process of navigating multiple options and committing to one or few alternatives was considered as an important dimension of doing well.  This is not a one-time event but “accumulation of best decisions” (Participant 8, Age 31, Korea) over a period of time.  Also, the decision-    94  making was believed to be the “best decision” (Participant 14, Age 28, Korea) or even as “doing the right thing” (Participant 9, Age 26, Korea).  Another idea reflected in the subtheme was the nature of certainty that is associated with career decision-making.  “Knowing with certainty what one wants to do” (Participant 5, Age 25, Iran) was very much a contributor to the definition of doing well.  The fact that decisions are made in an informed manner and the confidence in knowing what is important for the participants was reflected in this subtheme.  The second subtheme in this category was financial stability or prospects (22% participation rate and 5 items).  This subtheme included items that ranged from very “basic needs such food and rent” (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.) to “certain financial standards considering Vancouver housing market . . . around $100,000” (Participant 10, Age 33, Hong Kong).  To do well in terms of career decision-making from a financial perspective was perceived differently by different people, yet with the common underlying theme that there will be enough money to meet whatever one deems as important in life.  For students it could mean to “start earning” (Participant 17, Age 30, India) after years of schooling.  Many others saw this as being “paid commensurate to work” (Participant 13, Age 26, Fiji).  Hence, according to the items in this subtheme, doing well was mainly evaluated as having the financial means to justify the career decisions they have made.  The third subtheme was positive outcome (22% participation and 4 items).  Here there was a retrospective appraisal of the decisions made and they evaluated their current situation more in terms of how their “decisions worked out” (Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland).  Unlike the first subtheme in this category, here the focus was not on     95  whether the decision-making process was good or efficient, rather the focus was mostly on the outcome of the decisions.  The current beliefs and feelings of the participant with regards to how they were doing now was captured in this subtheme.  Hence, the meaning of doing well summarized here was about the current perception of the participants about “being successful in one’s field” (Participant 13, Age 26, Fiji).  The fourth subtheme was working in the field of training or experience (17% participation rate and 4 items).  Here, doing well meant that immigrant young adults were able to find work that was directly related to what they went to school for.  This would mean that their “training is not wasted” (Participant 5, Age 25, Iran) and they get an “opportunity to use skills, abilities, and talents acquired in school” (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.).  This they contrasted with their parents, many of whom are internationally trained professionals, but are underemployed in Canada.  Hence, they believe that to be doing well in their career it is important that they are able to make the best of their training and education, which they have invested into.  These four subthemes defined doing well using the different aspects of success such as informed choice, financial stability, positive outcome, and opportunity to work in the field of training.  Together they revealed one of the three main themes – successful outcome and choice – that pertained to the understanding of what doing well meant for the participants in the study. Satisfaction and meaningfulness.  The second largest main theme that emerged from what participant responded to the interview question on doing well was satisfaction and meaningfulness.  This main theme was represented by 67% of the participants with 19 items.  There were two subthemes under this category, which are discussed below.  The first subtheme was satisfaction and enjoyment (participation rate of 39% with 13     96  items).  Comparing all the 8 subthemes, this one had the highest participation rate.  Most of the participants, who mentioned an item in this subtheme spelt out the importance of enjoyment of their work in their definition of what doing well meant.  There was also the feeling of satisfaction that came from “pursuing area of interest” (Participant 7, Age 27, China).  The happiness they experienced as resulting from the job they have undertaken and the decisions they made were reflected in this subtheme.  The quotes of the participants related to satisfaction and enjoyment also alluded to “fulfillment of passion” (Participant 16, Age 34, Taiwan) along with “not being anxious about the career” (Participant 14, Age 28, Korea).  Of the many reasons for satisfaction were also references to getting along well with co-workers.  So, “liking the job” (Participant 16, Age 34, Taiwan) and “enjoying what one is doing” (Participant 15, Age 27, Taiwan) was a prevalent notion in this subtheme.  The second subtheme was a combination of doing meaningful work and having diverse experiences (6 items with 28% participation rate).  To have your “purpose fulfilled” (Participant 10, Age 33, Hong Kong) and to find meaning in the work you do is considered doing well according to this subtheme.  The meaning here is seen to be more related to fulfillment beyond the work or job undertaken.  One of the participants referred to the how their career was “something that made a difference” (Participant 12, Age 33, Taiwan).  For another participant it was a matter of pride when they emphasized feeling “proud of what (they) do” (Participant 15, Age 27, Taiwan).  Doing well, according to this subtheme, also extended to gaining “different experiences in varied settings” (Participant 18, Age 27, Colombia) and “being global” (Participant 10, Age 33, Hong Kong).     97  Advancement and future growth.  This was the third and final main theme represented by 39% of participants with 10 items.  This main theme addressed the future in terms of doing well with career decision-making.  There were two subthemes, and one had to do with positive anticipation about future goals and the other related to prospects of growth and progress associated with career.  The first subtheme – anticipating positive future – had participation rate of 22% with 5 items.  This subtheme identified the dimension of doing well based on the opportunities that participants saw for themselves in the future.  Participant 11 (Age 29, China) stated this in terms of “clear direction for the future”.  Now that the decisions have been made and some of the initial steps have been taken, they believe that that they are doing well since all that is left is to see themselves complete the journey they have begun, with clear sight of what their future would look like.  This could also mean envisaging some security in their career (Participant 17, Age 30, India).  The second subtheme in this category was personal and career progress (17% participation rate and 5 items).  This subtheme focused on what participant saw as possible advancement in their field or organization.  This may be an “opportunity to advance to higher management” (Participant 1) or “getting more educational and professional development” (Participant 12, Age 33, Taiwan).  In comparison to the previous subtheme, here the growth was more specified in terms of a better position or climbing the organizational hierarchy as opposed to a general belief about a better future.  One participant mentioned about “upward mobility – moving up positions” as an indicator of doing well.  These two subthemes expressed the optimism of a better future as a marker of doing well.     98  Changes in doing well.  While the eligibility criteria for the study included doing well with career decision-making as defined by the participant, the researcher was interested in finding out whether they had been doing well all along or could the participants identify a specific time or incident when they started to do well.  Eleven of the 18 participants believed that they have been always doing well (Table 4).  The 7 participants who responded in the negative were further asked to describe the change from not doing well to doing well.  Table 4  Participant Response to “Have You Always Done Well with Career Decision-Making”? Participant No. Gender Age Responded Yes Responded No 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 M M F M F F F F M F M F M F F 26 25 25 35 25 25 27 31 26 33 29 33 26 28 27  ✓  ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓  ✓  ✓    ✓  ✓      ✓  ✓  ✓ ✓ ✓     99  16 17 18  F F F  34 30 27   ✓ ✓ ✓      Table 5   Themes Related to “What Changes Facilitated Doing Well with Career Decision-Making?”         Themes                                   Examples Participants (N=7)  Incidents n %  #  Encouragement from Family, Friends and People at Work  Friend encouraging to seek resources; Pastor who directed to resources and organizations; getting recognition at workplace   4  57   5 Change in Experience and/or Increased Exposure to Different Work Environments More experience; found a good job; experiencing career more hands on; relationship with coworkers changed 3 43  7  There were two themes that emerged from participant responses, which are summarized in Table 5.  The first theme was that of encouragement from family, friends, and people at the workplace.  This theme was represented by 57% of the participants (5 items) who discussed positive change in career decision-making.  These were the participants who said that they had not always been doing well in career decision-making.  Participant 1 (Age 26, Israel) said that their friend “kicked me in the butt” to seek out     100  resources that facilitated career progress.  Another participant spoke about meeting “his Pastor”, who introduced them to an organization, which was instrumental in making successful career decisions (Participant 3, Age 25, Korea).  According to a participant, when the outlook of the parents changed, it encouraged them to do well.  They elaborated that “parents who were not agreeing, but now they are actually proud and they actually approve it” (Participant 9, Age 26, Korea).  The encouragement and support at the workplace were also identified as a factor that contributed to handling career decisions better.  According to Participant 15 (Age 27, Taiwan) So, I wanted to work for a place where people would recognize me and then now I have accomplished this.  So, I like the idea that something that I imagined actually came true.  And also, the relationship with the coworker, there was more respect. The second theme reflecting participants responses to handling career decisions well was change in experience or increased exposure to different work environments.  The participation rate for this theme was 43% (7 items; N=7).  This could be something as normal as “finding a new job” (Participant 11, Age 29, China) or “taking the risk” to gain experience in a different field (Participant 13, Age 26, Fiji).  One of the participants added that “experiencing career more hands on” contributed towards making better career decisions (Participant 14, Age 28, Korea).  This change in experience was identified by one participant as an intentional action, which they later realized paid off in terms of what was to be identified as a successful career decision-making.  They stated I think, I prepared.  I put time . . . I just did what I am supposed to do.  I just prepared, I read the things that I had to read, I was in the right place, I served at     101  the right timing.  I just practiced what I had to.  And when all those small things gather together, I think that made me realize and other people realize that I was in the right place. (Participant 9, Age 26, Korea) Critical Incident and Wish List Categories The critical incident part of the interview was intended to gather data relating to the central research question of the current study, namely what helps or hinders immigrant young people do well with their career decision-making? For the critical incident questions for the first interview, participants were asked “What has helped you in doing well with making career decisions?” “What things have made it more difficult for you to do well in making career decisions? With regards to wish list questions the participants were asked “Are there other things that would have helped in the past that were not available to you, or that will help in the future if they become available?” (Appendix D) The first interviews yielded a total of 225 incidents with 109 (48%) helping critical incidents, 50 (22%) hindering critical incidents, and 66 (29%) wish list items.  The second interviews yielded one new helping critical incident, four new hindering critical incidents, and four new wish list items.  In the second interview participants were provided an opportunity to review and reflect upon the results of their first interviews, thus yielding a total of 9 additional critical incidents.  Besides the addition of these new critical incidents from the second interview, no other critical incidents or wish list items from the first interviews were amended or deleted.  Following the second interviews, there were a total of 234 helping and hindering critical incidents and wish list items, subdivided as follows: 110 (47%) helping critical     102  incidents; 54 (23%) hindering critical incidents; and 70 (30%) wish list items.  These items were placed into categories that were created based on the data from the study.  A total of 9 categories emerged and they have been listed based on descending participation rates of the helping categories.  Participation rates were calculated by dividing the number of participants who mentioned items fitting into a particular category by the total number of participants (N = 18).  According to Borgen and Amundson (1984), a minimum of 25% participation rate is required for category viability.  Each of the 9 categories that emerged in this study met the 25% participation rate test under one or more of the helping, hindering, or wish list headings.  Table 6 summarizes the categories, the total number of items in each category, and the participation rates in percentages.  The results pertaining to each of the 9 categories are discussed in detail following the table outlining the name of the category with their definitions, the total number of incidents reported in that category with a breakdown of the number of incidents in each of the helping, hindering, and wish list groups, participation rates for each category and groups, and representative participant quotes for the helping factors, then the hindering factors, and finally the wish list items.  It is important to note that the critical incidents pertain to only the helping and hindering factors.  While the wish list items are included in the same table, they are different from the critical incidents in that they are not real incidents because they have not yet happened in the past, but they only reflect what the participants wish would have happened or are hoping to happen in the future. Personal qualities.  These include factors that are more internal to the participants such as personality, attitudes, values, and beliefs, which according to the     103  participants, are associated with career decision-making.  Some other incidents in this category include faith (religious), spirituality, openness, self-confidence, persistence, and hard work.  Table 6  Categories of Critical Incidents (Helping and Hindering) and Wish List Items   Helping  Hindering  Wish List Categories P# P% I#  P# P% I#  P# P% I# Personal Qualities 18 100% 43  10 56% 10  4 22% 7 Family Members/Situation 12 67% 17  5 28% 5  3 17% 3 Significant Others Outside Family   11 61% 15  1 6% 1  7 39% 9 Experience/Training 10 56% 14  6 33% 9  11 61% 15 External/Serendipitous Factors 7 39% 7  7 39% 11  1 6% 1 Cultural/Immigration-related Experience   5 28% 5  3 17% 4  4 22% 6 Network/Information/Resources 4 22% 5  2 11% 3  12 67% 22 Finance 2 11% 2  5 28% 5  6 33% 6 Language 2 11% 2  6 33% 6  1 6% 1 Note. P# = Number of Participants; P% = Percentage of Participants; I# = Number of Incidents  Helping.  This category had 100% participation rate (18 participants) with the largest number of helping incidents.  That is, all eighteen participants reported at least one helping incident belonging to this category.  A total of 43 incidents were reported in     104  this category.  Helping incidents in this category included reporting of positive characteristics related to personal outlook, interests, worldview, awareness, and confidence that they believe contributed to doing well with their decision-making.  A few personal qualities in this category that stood out due to multiple reporting included faith (religious)/spirituality, persistence, interest, optimism, self-confidence, internal strength and values. Faith.  According to one participant, faith was instrumental in seeing beyond one’s immediate circumstance.  They stated that “God has a plan for everyone” and their strong conviction was evident when they said, “I’m pretty sure that God has a plan for me . . . and I always knew there’s something” (Participant 3, Age 25, Korea). For another participant faith in God helped open some career avenues that were beyond their reach and qualifications as a new immigrant to Canada. My faith definitely comes into play there.  I can say I’ve had pretty definite moments where I have prayed when I was out of work and not sure of what to do, and feel like God has opened up some pretty cool doors for us.  Things again, like I said, I didn’t feel qualified for and didn’t feel like I should be getting on my own merit, but I felt the Lord had a lot of grace in that and gave me opportunities and helped provide for our family. (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.) Persistence.  Some participants spoke about their quality of persistence, which helped them do well with career decision-making.  According to one participant, “once I have made a decision, which was after a lot of thought and a lot of research, I don’t back out of it” (Participant 12, Age 33, Taiwan).  This, they believed, helped them successfully get into the master’s program in spite of many hurdles and impediments.     105  Another participant considers persistence as their strength and stated that if it had not been for this quality, they would not have succeeded in acquiring career-related positions comparable to those born in Canada.  According to them, persistence helped them “fight” and “compete” for what they believed was an important value and goal in life. I think that’s really the quality that if people ask me like what’s your strength then I’d say persistence. . . . So, maybe there’s that bit of fighter character in me.  I wouldn’t like some aspects of culture in Korea and I wanted to do my best to stay in a place (Canada) where I feel like I’m a better fit.  And despite the disadvantage I had, I think I achieved my goal because I competed with other students - native speakers.  I had a placement, I have a permanent job, and I was the first one in my classes who got a permanent job. (Participant 8, Age 31, Korea) Along the same lines, another participant talked about “being aggressive” and “working hard” because of the competition faced by immigrants in the job market, which eventually paid off in the long run (Participant 13, Age 26, Fiji). Interest.  Another personal quality that helped career decision-making for some of the participants was knowing and sticking to what they liked in terms of work.  For one of the participants, when they identified their area of career interest, it motivated them to seek out and get exactly what they were interested in.  Participant 5 relayed The stuff that I like to learn is so specific, but I’m glad the work environment that I work in right now deals with just that.  And I’m happy that it ended up being     106  like that just because I knew exactly what I liked, just like pinpointing to one specific thing I think really helped. (Participant 5, Age 25, Iran) Optimism.  The positive attitude participants had towards their future in general and career in specific was identified as a helpful factor under the category of personal qualities.  Participant 14 (Age 28, Korea) stated that “I am pretty optimistic by nature.  I think although I am uncertain about my abilities, I am optimistic about this career decision.  I know that it’s going to be difficult but I also kind of believe in myself.”  Another participant stated how their optimism helped them separate their work from their identity, which helped them to stay focused in their job while believing that criticism faced at the work environment does not define who they are as a person. Just positive thought to a certain degree . . . my work environment can be pretty stressful at times.  My boss can be pretty critical as much as she is really supportive.  So being able to say this work does not define all of who I am, and as much as it’s an important part, it’s not all of me.  And I think that makes a big difference, because when you say this is all of me it’s crushing when you don’t do a good job then, or its everything when you do a good job.  So, I think I’m going to say, “it’s ok if there are some things that go wrong, its ok, keep going”. (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.) Self-confidence/internal strength.  Another personal quality that was reported to have kept some participants going was their belief in themselves.  This required courage as they were constantly facing barriers and were not seeing a certain path forward into the future.  One participant said that in spite of the fear inherent in the decision-making     107  process, which almost looked like a life decision, they were able to hold on to their confidence in themselves.  The participant stated There is an inner confidence in me that this is the right thing.  Because there was one occasion I met somebody in Korea.  And she asked me . . . she wanted to make sure that I was sure about this path.  She was like, “are you sure?”.  She was really serious, and she just looked into my eyes, and she said, “are you sure?”.  And I was kind of scared.  And I said, “yes I am sure”.  And there were times that I just felt like I can put my life and I will be happy doing this until death.  Even if I die doing this work, I will be happy. (Participant 9, Age 26, Korea) This belief in the self was echoed by another participant, who added that believing in the self was only part of the story, and the other part involved “staying close” to that belief when there is pressure from the society, who often challenge your position. Staying very close to what I believe . . . when I stay very close to what I believe, I stay true to myself.  It helps me because I know I’m grounded . . . at times it’s challenging because what I think of myself may clash with what other people may expect of me, or what the society would say, but I know I am true to myself. (Participant 7, Age 27, China) Values.  A final component in this category was values.  These are beliefs that have been picked up mostly from their culture of origin, and these values have been highlighted as a helpful factor in making career decisions in Canada as a first-generation immigrant young person.  One participant attributed the success in their career as related to how their work matches with their personal values.  The participant stated     108  I do come from a family that’s very warm and my parents have always taught me you have to help other people, you cannot be mean to other people.  And also, from my religious background and the way I was grown up I think . . . I think the reason why I am happy with this career decision is because. . . it aligns well with my values. (Participant 14, Age 28, Korea) Hindering.  The participation rate for the hindering incidents was 56% (10 participants) with 10 hindering incidents.  Hindering incidents in this category focused on the lack of the positive qualities outlined earlier or the presence of perceived negative qualities related to their personal outlook in life.  These qualities, they believe, have come in the way of making successful career decisions.  Some of the examples used by the participants include “doubting yourself completely” (Participant 5, Age 25, Iran), “hesitation or overthinking” (Participant 7, Age 27, China), “negative attitude” (Participant 9, Age 26, Korea) and “being very shy” (Participant 12, Age 33, Taiwan).  Another participant discussed how their perceived intellectual capacity in comparison with others was hindering. Well I guess, I’m not that smart . . . since very young I was just an average student.  I got okay marks during high school, good enough to get into UBC but after I got into UBC, there’s a lot of very smart kids and then I used to be quite discouraged and self-conscious about my grades or my intelligence. (Participant 3, Age 25, Korea) The hesitation to ask for help and reach out to others is stated as a hindering factor by another participant, which they clarified as follows.     109  I don’t want to hurt my self-esteem; I want to avoid that situation, so I don’t really ask for help.  So that was hindrance because if I had struggled, if I had questions maybe I could have joined societies and clubs you know meet more people or like maybe even talk to friends who seem to be doing better than I was at the moment and maybe ask for their help and this.  But I’ve, never done any of those things in my career and that’s because of my character too, I have high self-esteem that I don’t want to ruin. (Participant 8, Age 31, Korea) Wish list.  Wish list factors associated with this category related to what participants wished in terms of possessing desirable inner qualities that would have helped them do well with career decision-making.  For the wish list items, the participation rate was 22% (4 participants) with 7 items.  One participant wished they had more guts to take risks, which they mentioned as something they wished they had in the past and also something about the future. I wish I was more gutsy. . . . I went to this event where the CEO of a big company was speaking and he said, “you have to go for every opportunity that comes your way you have to go for it” and I think he’s right.  So, if you know something comes up I’m not sure if I’ll be able to go for it. (Participant 5, Age 25, Iran) Another personal quality that a participant wished would have helped in the past and considers an asset for the future is self-awareness.  I think awareness, if I had more awareness that would have helped me make a decision.  So, when I was in high school, I was not really self-aware.  I did not know what I liked so I just went into science.  But the more I became aware of who I am and my values my personality that’s definitely helped me in the     110  decision-making process.  So, if I had more of that or even in the future. (Participant 14, Age 28, Korea) Family members/situation.  This category was the second highest in terms of helping incidents and had a participation rate of 67% (12 participants) with 17 helping incidents.  The helping factors in this category included support from family members as well as aspects related to the family such as background of the family members and where they were located.  Beyond members, they also included family situations such as single parent families, and aspects related to family background. Helping.  The helping category included aspects related to support from both overall family situation as well as specific members such as parents and siblings who have contributed to their career decision-making.  Overall family.  For one participant, family support meant “less pressure from the family” (Participant 2, Age 25, India) to make career decisions in a particular way and for another participants, it meant the opportunity to “speak to family members” (Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland).  These, they stated as helpful.  One participant reported that the space to vent and the opportunity for receiving informational advice as having helped to overcome some barriers related to career.  This is seen in the following participant statement. I suppose having a supportive family as well; even though they see that sometimes I worry too much, maybe I’m more on the verge of giving out and they’re like try to put it in perspective.  They hear me vent.  It turns out when I was getting really frustrated with some portions of the bad statistics because I have been very nervous in being not strong in statistics, they were trying to     111  explain it in their own words. . . . And they were like, have you tried YouTube? Because YouTube has a lot of videos on different kinds of statistical concepts and it was through their suggestion, I actually found out a great video; after I watched, I finally had a good sense of what an aha moment feels like. (Participant 12, Age 33, Taiwan) Parents (both).  Some other participants have specifically commented on the support they received from their parents.  According to one participant, they received the freedom to make career choices that aligned with their own interest, rather than having to follow what their parents thought were good for them.  This, according to them, was helpful and supportive.  They stated I think my parents . . . they used to have strict rules; they grew up in a very conservative family as well.  So, they were very protective of us – me and my sister.  But, even when I was a child when I was in Korea, little things, if I did not want to do something, my parents would just say okay, “it’s fine you don’t have to do it, you can do other things that you like to do.” They kind of always gave me that freedom.  Even after first year, when I said I want to switch my major – usually Korean parents they tend to be very “you have to work in this career” – but my parents were very accepting of my decisions.  So, I think that support has really helped me. (Participant 14, Age 28, Korea) Siblings.  Some other participants recalled the support they received from their siblings.  According to them, “I actually think my sister; I see her as quite a successful person.  So, I think her comments - she’s 3 years younger than me - I value her comments quite much” (Participant 15, Age 27, Taiwan). Another participant commented      112  I think maybe one thing that was helpful was just speaking to my sister . . . she said teaching was a good career; she gave me validation.  When I talked to my sister about it, she said she liked the job and that gave me more of a reason to go into it because here I had a sibling that enjoyed that career I was considering. (Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland) Spouse.  Another aspect that stood out for some other participants was the support and encouragement received from their spouse.  Here is an example of how a participant recounted the help they received from their spouse, which helped them make progress with their career in spite of the challenges. My husband’s been really helpful in encouraging me to do things.  He’s encouraged me to go for it (the position).  When I’m feeling like I don’t know if I can really do this, he’ll just say, “you can”; he just encourages me a lot in skill he sees in me.  And when you’re feeling a little insecure about it he bumps me up in that and tells me what he sees in me and says, “I think you can do this”; he has a lot of belief in me. (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.) Hindering.  This category had a participation rate of 28% (5 participants) with 5 hindering incidents.  The hindering factors included the perceived lack of support and/or unavailability of family members to support their career decision-making process.  Other examples related to the hindering factor include the stress related to family situations or conflict in the family that made it difficult for them to do well.  One participant stated that My parents split when I was in graduate school and that affected me. . . . I think there was one time I missed a scholarship deadline because of that.  So, it’s     113  basically trying to deal with my program and then have him (father) calling from Taiwan, he would be talking about the divorce to me and family situations like that.  Because when they’re having that divorce, I have to split part of my mind to think about their divorce instead of focusing on my studies and my career decisions. (Participant 16, Age 34, Taiwan) Another participant reported that the expectations from her family made her compromise some of her time and involvement she could have given to her career.  The participant also discussed how their gender came in the way of not receiving enough support from parents, in terms of succeeding with career decisions.  According to her I think my family is always a core, like the reason why I go back and forth; it always drove me back to Hong Kong. . . . I didn’t want to be there, but they (family) have a different set of expectations probably than what I define success, I think.  For my brother it would have been more than okay, “you’ve got to be a lawyer or doctor”.  For me I didn’t have that. (Participant 10, Age 33, Hong Kong) Wish list.  The wish list factors in this category included what participants wished with regards to increased support and more facilitative conditions that would have helped them to make better decisions.  The participation rate was 17% (3 participants) and there were 3 wish list items in this category.  One of the participants wished that their family situation was different, which could have helped them advance their higher studies. The family change was a factor.  It was a family change because at that time I graduated from the University and then I was thinking to do a master’s, but actually my dad, he closed down his company.  So, there was an economic     114  change.  So that’s also why I wanted to start working right away. . . . I was quite concerned.  I wished it was different. (Participant 15, Age 27, Taiwan) The wish list for the future is expressed by a participant concerning their married life as a possible support towards successful career decisions.  They wondered Can I say like my future spouse? I want to have a partner who has the same vision.  Because if I want to do this but then your husband or your spouse want something else, if their values or the vision doesn’t match, it doesn’t work out right, and there will be conflicts in the future. (Participant 3, Age 25, Korea) Significant others (outside family). Helping.  A total of 11 participants (61%) mentioned 15 helping incidents in this category.  Helping factors in this category included the support they received from friends, supervisors, mentors, teachers, and other people who were not their family members.  They reported that the encouragement, guidance, and validation they received from these people as significant to making important decisions that helped them do well.  Participants have reported friends as helpful, both as a source of support in their career decision-making as well as a source of motivation when they compare themselves with their friends who are doing well. Friends (support).  One participant, speaking about their friend mentioned that, “she’s amazing; I’ve known her since grade 10.  Just, you know, emotional support, moral support, just having someone to talk to, that helps always” (Participant 5, Age 25, Iran). Friends (comparison).  Another example of how friends were helpful was that their friends motivated the participant to do better as a result of comparison.  Some     115  participants talked about how the career decisions of their friends encouraged them to aspire higher and take up educational paths and careers that they otherwise would not have taken.  One participant stated So, it’s not mainly their [friend’s] suggestions, it’s mainly I use them as a comparison.  So, I think like how they help me is like I want to be better than them.  So, they are kind of like a target.  When I see the better ones I want to become like them. (Participant 15, Age 27, Taiwan) Another participant, on similar lines, discusses how their friend made them feel, which prompted them to make decisions to get into a similar program of study. Because one of them actually went to a Bible school as well before me.  And it made myself realize that I was a little bit jealous of it.  I was like, “hmm . . . he is in theology school”, and I kind of felt jealous.  I guess he triggered something inside of me that I wanted to do the same. (Participant 9, Age 26, Korea) Teachers/mentors.  Participants talked about teachers and mentors as helping them with career decision-making.  A participant emphasized the “special attention” they received “because they felt like I probably need more help.” This participant also stated that, “she (teacher) was always checking in” (Participant 8, Age 31, Korea). Another participant talked about how mentors have played a significant role in their career decision-making, very similar to what parents would have done.  The participant reported They (mentors) play similar roles in terms of like my academic or career decisions as my parents. . . . I’m really, really grateful for all my mentors the support, the constant support I have.  They share their life story with me and they     116  just gave me such a different perspective.  Some of the very concrete support is like when I apply close to 10 programs across the country, they gave me 10 different references, yes.  And so without their help I would not be where I am today.  So yeah, I have their support 100% and I’m just really, really grateful for that. (Participant 7, Age 27, China) Boss/supervisors.  As with friends and mentors, participants talked about their supervisors at workplace, who have supported them in their transition towards experiencing success in their career decision-making.  One participant expressed their gratitude towards their boss, and expressed that, “having bosses who tell me what I’m doing well and giving me chances to grow in that” was helpful (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.).  According to another participant, It was a lot around installing the belief – while I was questioning myself – that I shouldn’t just let myself to what I was doing at the time . . . what they (supervisors) were saying, kind of sharing their knowledge was, what would be necessary qualifications or other kinds of directions where I could take in my career. (Participant 12, Age 33, Taiwan) Hindering/wish list.  The participation rate for the hindering incidents was 6% (1 participant mentioning 1 item) and that of the wish list items was 39% (7 participants mentioning 9 items).  While the hindering factors were related to the lack of such support, the wish list items made reference to the possibility of doing better if they had people such as supervisors, bosses, and teachers to rely on.  Wish list (past).  Some of the participants who reported a wish list item focused on the past in terms what support they could have received from significant others for     117  their career decision-making during the formative years of their life in Canada as a new immigrant.  One participant expressed, “I wish I could’ve talked to someone that experienced the same difficulties and was able to resolve and (was) doing well” (Participant 8, Age 31, Korea).  Another participant added that their teachers could have provided them with specific career guidance that their parents could not offer.  They said My parents, because they were immigrants, they did not have work experience in Canada.  So, they did not know what kind of jobs make a good living or they had no resources on that.  So, if I had more guidance (from teachers) on that, just career options, it would have helped. (Participant 14, Age 28, Korea) Wish list (future).  A few participants expressed their wish for the future.  When asked about something that would help in the future, one participant stated, “a mentor”.  They expanded that “I can really learn from my mentor about his or her experience making it that far.  And just knowing of the little decisions they made, and the mistakes they made, and just having that kind of normalize the experience” (Participant 7, Age 27, China).  Another participant was more general in their wish to meet and get to know people from different careers, who would inspire them.  The participant stated Having friends or having people that have the same sort of mentality as you because that inspires you to do well . . . there’s all these people that you meet from all the different world and they are engineers, doctors, then you can inspire yourself to much better. (Participant 18, Age 27, Colombia) Experience/training.  This category included critical incidents related to previous experience that may be associated with work, education, training, or life that have contributed towards the process of career decision-making.  It also included examples of     118  situations where such experience was not available and hence was a hindering factor in the process of career decision-making.  This category had the fourth largest number of helping incidents with 10 participants (56%) who mentioned 14 helping incidents. Helping.  The helping factors here included the different learning opportunities they had both in grade school and post-secondary institutions.  The other factors that contributed to this category included work and voluntary experiences such as internship, apprenticeship, and paid employment.  Some participants also talked about their life experience in general that have helped them with career decision-making.  Experience (related activities/work).  One of the examples in this category of experience/training is activities participants have engaged in the past that have in some way contributed towards present career decisions or success in career decision-making.  According to one participant, “when I volunteered with the youth center, I have done such an array of things from secretarial work to accounting to cooking to helping youth and it’s just such a variety of training” (Participant 1), which they believe has helped them in their later decision-making.  Another participant talked about how engaging in such activities helped increase awareness of their personal abilities and interests. I was involved in many related activities . . . an example would be I was a team leader at a Korean Christian conference many times . . . it made me realize that I am good at those and I really enjoy those.  They made me realize that I am happy when I am involved in those activities. (Participant 9, Age 26, Korea) Some participants also revealed how they have acquired sets of skills from previous experiences that are proving advantageous in their current jobs, thereby increasing their probability of career advancement.     119  When I was in the Israel Defense Force, we were taught to do stuff certain ways.  And because of that I am focused on doing my tasks properly and efficiently.  I don’t want to take 20 minutes when I can do it in 5.  Being effective in tasks, it helped in problem solving of the task and getting the job done now and not taking forever. (Participant 1, Age 26, Israel) Experience (education/courses).  Another aspect that emerged in this category relates to the participant’s educational and training experiences that they believe have helped in career decision-making.  For example, one participant recounted making use of the available opportunities to get the additional certifications and short courses in the field.  They said  I think education, like these extension courses that I’ve done over a period of time as well . . . getting those extension courses done, writing all the exams, and getting the certifications, all that, when you’re doing the application you can present that. (Participant 13, Age 26, Fiji) Experience (life lessons/experiences).  These are life lessons that may or may not be related to the work place, but they have had an impact in terms of career decision-making.  One participant talked about a negative experience related to changing supervisors.  They believed that this experience helped them learn a lesson, which helped them later with their career decision-making.  The participant stated  So, the lesson learnt…it’s just helping me be more – I wouldn’t say more confident – but more like I have an idea but maybe not have the courage to make that decision but then something like a major setback makes me more firm in that,     120  like in believing that that’s the right decision for me or have the courage to just take that step. (Participant 7, Age 27, China) Experiences (career strategies).  Some participants talked about experiences that are related to planned strategies aimed towards increasing career success through activities such as career assessment, career exploration and career counselling – focusing on future job options or educational paths.  One of the participants shared their experience about the different career focused strategies involving taking a career assessment test and doing informational interviews.  The participant stated  I think that the other helpful factor was the career assessment that I did at XYZ.  Because it’s always one thing to just kind of have it in your mind but when you see it on paper and you see the listing of those possible career options it validates what you already knew.  And it is then helpful; part of that is really helpful I think was doing the informational interview and learning about the different careers because that gave me more of an idea about what these people really did, what their work day would look like and whether I would really enjoy what they are doing. (Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland) Hindering.  The participation rate for the hindering incidents was 33% (6 participants) and this category has 9 hindering incidents.  The hindering factors related to the lack of education, training and experience which limited their opportunities for career growth.  Experience (lack of relevant experience).  One way in which this category hindered some of the participants’ career decision-making was with regards to how the lack of experience created a roadblock in their career decision-making.  One of the     121  participants, who is a computer engineer stated that, “maybe I should have gone to the field first before going to graduate studies.  Like they say over qualified but not enough skills, something like that” (Participant 11, Age 29, China).  This participant believed that gaining work experience soon after their undergraduate program would have helped them acquire the skills that are needed in the job market, and hence going to graduate school without the experience was not helpful.  The participant added that “that’s why when I apply for jobs, I don’t write my graduate degree on my resume . . . technology changed through those four years.  Smart phone was just an emerging market, and now everyone was using them.”  Experience (unsatisfying).  Some other participants found their previous work-related or training experience not up to the mark, which hindered their career decision-making.  One participant stated I’ve not had the best experience in clinic.  A lot of my clients did not come back for whatever reason, and just my interactions with my supervisor in the program has not been that positive, I don’t feel that she’s very supportive and just some of the feedback that she has given me have made me really question whether this is the career that I should be going into. (Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland) Wish list.  The wish list items pertained to what the participants believed would have helped in terms of formal and informal learning and on-the-job experience, which was not available to them or they wish would be available to them in the future for career success.  With 15 wish list items contributed by 61% of the participants (11 participants), this category has the second highest number of wish list items reported by participants.  There were three components that were highlighted in this category, one related to the     122  future and two related to the past.  The future component pertained to professional or personal growth and the past wish list component pertained to educational experience in a field of their choice and work-related experience or exposure. Professional/Personal Growth (future).  This pertained to opportunities that are likely to enhance the self either personally or professionally.  One participant talked about having “more professional development opportunities”, which they believed would be “helpful in getting some more broader experience” (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.).  Another participant was hoping to find opportunities for advancement that is more personal than professional.  They reported I know I want to be a nurse and I want to improve my competence and abilities as a nurse, but at the same time I want to be a better person and grow and become more mature and everything.  So, in order to do that I would need opportunities, I guess, like outreach opportunities, where I have the opportunity to go to other countries, maybe a third world country, to actually have the experience of serving people . . . . (Participant 3, Age 25, Korea) Educational experience in a field (past).  Some participants believed that their career path would have been different if they had the opportunity to study certain courses or get training differently.  For example, one participant wished they had “done a business course in school”, which would have helped to “discern a little bit sooner if this is actually what I want to do,” (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.).  Another participant wished they had more training in economics, which they believed would have helped them aim for career decisions that are at a higher level.  According to the participant      123  I felt like I had a bigger background in economics . . .  it’s just the concept of finances is so similar in the finance industry . . . having economics or anything like that.  I find the VPs have master’s in commerce.  They have that position because of the scope that they have built up over the years. (Participant 13, Age 26, Fiji) Work-related experience/exposure (past).  Similar to what some participants wished were different for them in relation to their education, some other participants wished they could have gained more hands-on experience in a work setting.  One participant mentioned that having done a co-op programme would have helped in getting “different types of experiences in different environments” (Participant 5, Age 25, Iran).  They stated, “I made a very conscious decision in not doing co-op when I was at the University, right now I think I should have done it probably.” Another participant wished that they received more job-related experience in high school, which would have helped career decision-making.  According to the participant In high school if you had the opportunity, like more of an opportunity to get out into the work force . . . having more of a variety would maybe give an open view of what else is out there.  So, maybe I could be doing something else right now; I could be a plumber or an electrician. (Participant 2, Age 25, India) External/serendipitous factors.  The participation rate for both the helping and hindering items was 39% (7 participants each) and for the wish list items it was 6% (1 participant).  The hindering category had the highest number of incidents in any hindering category (11 incidents) and the participation rate was the second highest among the hindering categories.  These factors focused on those aspects of their experiences that     124  the participants believed were based on luck and chance (e.g., physical appearance, medical condition).  These incidents could also be factors external to them such as the geographical location of their residence, which influenced their career decision-making.  Helping.  The helping factors included incidents and situations that were not planned or anticipated, which contributed towards a successful career outcome.  Examples include the opening up of a position because someone left the organization, company merger, and unanticipated meeting of a potential employer.  For example, a participant reported that, “I think luck as well (was helpful) because of the acquisitions I have been part of; I don’t think it had anything to do with me.  They came up when they did” (Participant 13, Age 26, Fiji).  Another participant stated that “my disability has limited me from being able to work for so many years.  So being able to go back to the work force has given me a new sense of life” (Participant 1).  Other attributions that participants have made in terms of helping their career decision-making belonging to this category include “living in a small city” (Participant 18, Age 27, Colombia) and “not having a really long commute, like having a place that’s close by and having a vehicle” (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.). Hindering.  The hindering factors mentioned by participants reflected aspects and influences that were beyond their control, which negatively affected their career decision-making.  Examples of hindering incidents include illness, limited funding, and meeting with an accident.  The two hindering aspects that stood out from participant responses included personal or medical conditions beyond their control and systemic factors that blocked the participant from making career decisions in an unconstrained manner.     125  Personal/medical conditions beyond control.  Some participants talked about their medical conditions coming in the way of the career progress.  According to one participant, “I have also had chronic pain in my feet for a couple of years.  So, that’s been hindering some roles that require more moving around” (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.).  Another participant talked about the restrictions they faced with regards to the kind of jobs they can take due to their disability. One factors that’s more hindering is I have cerebral palsy.  So, I cannot use my right hand for typing and that was hindering in terms of when I looked at different types of jobs.  I really wanted a job that did not involve a lot of typing because some of the desk jobs that I had in business involved a lot of typing and then my left hand hurt a lot afterwards because I had to be typing with one hand all the time.  So, it was hindering because it restricted the number of jobs that I could possibly look at. (Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland) Systemic factors.  Another aspect that emerged as hindering in this category included characteristics of the system or establishments, which were beyond their control.  One of the participants shared their frustration related to getting into an education program in Canada.  They said, “it’s the system here.  System, I think, how you can’t get into a program straight away, you have to waste so much of your time, energy and money doing pre-requisites.  I think that was a huge hurdle” (Participant 17, Age 30, India).  Other examples cited in this category that was related to the systemic factors was “challenging job market” (Participant 11, Age 29, China & Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland) and “negative opinion of certain occupations” (Participant 4, Age 35,     126  Switzerland).  Participants believed that such factors that are associated with the organization and public opinion hindered their career decision-making. Wish list.  Wish list factors for this category included participants who wished they had more luck and they wished that they were in the right place at the right time for getting a career break.  For the one participant who mentioned a wish list in this category, they wished that they “lived close to campus” when they attended university (Participant 11, Age 29, China).  The opportunity to have lived close to university would have helped to pursue other interests that now became impossible due to the long commute. Cultural/immigration-related experience.  A total of 5 participants (28%) mentioned 5 helping incidents in this category, 3 participants (17%) mentioned 4 hindering incidents and 4 participants (22%) mentioned 6 wish list items.  The factors in this category included aspects of the Canadian culture and/or the culture of their home country that played a role in making career decisions that worked well for them.  These experiences may also be associated with their transition as a new immigrant to Canada and the challenges/opportunities that were unique to integrating with the host culture.  Helping.  The helping factors included perceived aspects of culture in either or both their home country and/or Canada that had positively contributed towards successful career decision-making.  They may be attitudes, values, expectations, or a supportive climate that worked for young immigrants to make a smoother transition.  One participant spoke about the opportunities and equality in Canada as helpful.  “The country itself, I guess.  I saw more opportunities here.  Everyone is treated pretty much the same, so equality.  That I think that helped me too, the equality” (Participant 18, Age 27, Colombia).  Another participant believed that since she was an “expatriate”, she did not     127  have to “conform” to the expectations of a particular place or group.  “Because I was kind of an expat when I go to certain places, I don’t have that pressure of living to be a certain group.  So, I can rotate, I can explore more” (Participant 10, Age 33, Hong Kong).  This they believed helped with their career decision-making.  The acceptance of diversity in Canada, was hailed as a helpful factor by a participant. Generally speaking, Canadian culture is very accepting (of) new immigrants.  It is (English) not my first language, but I never had an encounter where my patients were like, “oh, can I meet with a native speaker?” They accept it that’s our culture.  Everyone finds it; they celebrate that it’s a diverse culture.  So, there was rarely a time where I felt I was being discriminated. (Participant 8, Age 31, Korea) Hindering.  The hindering factors included unfamiliarity of the cultural context in Canada, challenges to cultural integration, and discrimination.  For one participant, the unwelcoming environment as a new immigrant to Canada was experienced as hindering.  They stated Probably making Canadian friends . . . some of them they just don’t want to be in the same room with you and I don’t know how you react to that because you’re in this place where it’s all multicultural and then they don’t want to sit with somebody else with a different background and a different accent.  So, that made it difficult at some point because myself and other people were encountering challenges that they couldn’t work with Canadian students. (Participant 18, Age 27, Colombia)     128  Wish list.  The wish list items in this category, with a participation rate of 22% (4 participants mentioned 6 items), referred to participants’ desire for greater appreciation of diversity in the workplace and valuing of their strengths, both in the past and also in the future.  One of the participants stated that he wished there was more diversity in the work force.  According to him, “in a lot of the jobs that I have held, the upper management or the higher-level jobs were very much taken by people who were born here and who were brought up here” (Participant 14, Age 28, Korea).  They reiterated that “if there is more diversity in the work force, as an immigrant minority, I would get more opportunity.” Another participant focused on the possibility of having avenues for integrating with the Canadian culture.  According to them, I think it would be nice if there was a club or community for actually integration into the culture . . . as in not this club is an isolated identity outside of the culture because that’s not why I feel like moving here.  Eventually I want to find a job here, eventually I want to live here, but having a support to talk to people about things like that would be nice . . . I have no idea how that would look like. (Participant 16, Age 34, Taiwan) Network/information/resources.  This category had the highest participation rate in the wish list category with 12 of the 18 participants (67%) mentioning a wish list item (22 items).  The participation rates for the helping and hindering incidents were 22% (4 participants mentioned 5 item) and 11% respectively (2 participants mentioned 3 items). Helping.  The helping factors included connecting with people in the field to know more about the prospects in that field and/or seeking information and making use     129  of available resources to make informed decisions.  One participant stated that “talking to people” helped him with his career decision-making especially because of the “advice” he got from people who had “five to fifteen year of experience” (Participant 10, Age 33, Hong Kong).  Just as talking to people for seeking advice has been helpful, another participant expressed the importance of establishing relationships for career success. I think the other thing is relationships as well.  The financial industry in Canada, especially in BC, I think is a very small . . . . So, you see people that you’ve seen at other roles.  The other thing with relationships is how you treat people as well . . . and if you treat people with the respect in the work environment, it doesn’t matter – like for me – although I didn’t have that education background, it has still helped to move upwards. (Participant 13, Age 26, Fiji) Hindering.  The hindering factor included lack of connections, resources or information that were essential for career decision-making as a new immigrant to Canada.  According to one participant The lack of resources. . . . So, this is also kind of related to being an immigrant.  But because my parents came here and they had no social network, they had very limited finances.  So, I guess I also started with not a lot of resources.  I guess I did not know anything about what is out there in Canada, what kind of career options that I have.  The things that were provided in school that were not really enough, especially the social networks, I think. (Participant 14, Age 28, Korea) Wish list (past).  The wish list factors included what the participants wished were available for them or will become available in the future with regards to knowing people who could provide information and point to resources that were important to their career     130  success.  The two components in this wish list category were informational support and personal support. Informational support.  One kind of support that participants wished were available for them in the past was career and education related information.  This, some participants believed, would have helped with making better career decisions.  According to one participant, there were “a lot of good reputable websites to find statistics and to find data on different careers or different professions, but what I find is really lacking is a really up to date and realistic or current information” (Participant 12, Age 33, Taiwan).  The participant went on to say that if such information was available when they were making career decisions, it would have been an “informed decision” and “smoother”.  Another participant shared about their experience going to the university from high school with very less information.  The participant said In high school probably, the help that I wish I had but didn’t would be someone who would tell me the real experience of going to university.  Yes, and what is it like university life on a daily basis because that’s something I wasn’t prepared for. . . . Well that would help me be psychologically prepared for university life and just knowing the nitty gritty details about going into university and how the little things actually influence your life there as a student.  Yeah, so just having that real picture, like more complete picture. (Participant 7, Age 27, China)  Personal support.  For some other participants they wished the support came in the form of people more than information.  They wished that there was somebody to talk to and provide emotional support in this process of transition.  One participant stated that “the experiences that different people can share, really shed a lot more value to connect     131  this career exploration than just reading a book” (Participant 12, Age 33, Taiwan).  Another participant wished that the opportunity to connect with people who have experience would have been invaluable.  According to them I think what would have been helpful too is having somebody when you finish university; you can feel a bit lost as far as where do I go from here.  So, I think, having somebody to help me with the transition a bit more, especially when I don’t have family here or really connections outside of school. (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.) Wish list (Future).  The wish list for the future included aspects of both informational and personal support similar to the wish list for the past.  Here is an example of participant discussing what they wished would be available soon after finishing university. Well, how do you set up a private practice? We never learned that.  So, having a class where you really learn about these things and/or having as well as that support afterwards I think sometimes is just lacking. . . . Yeah, it just seems you finish your master’s degree, you’re on your own, you finish your courses and you can do whatever you want.  Great! but how do you get into what you want to do? (Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland) Finance.  A total of 2 participants mentioned 2 helpful incidents (11%) in this category, 5 participants mentioned 5 hindering incidents (27%), 6 participants mentioned 6 wish list items (33%).  When participants mentioned incidents related to money that have impacted their career decision-making, they have been included under this category.      132  They may be related to affordability of education, funding for school, or plain financial stress.  Helping.  The helpful factors included the lack of financial stress and the opportunity for financial support from family to pursue education and career goals.  According to one participant  So not having to worry about money, I think, was helpful.  Yes, I didn’t really have any money, but I was able to stay with my parents at the time and so I didn’t really have to worry about money that much.  And I think that is also helpful because from my experience – even teaching high school – I find a lot of the kids that drop out is because they don’t really have the support of their parents and their parents don’t have that much money either.  They don’t think they can go to university. (Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland) Hindering.  The hindering factors included not having enough money, challenges related to unaffordability of education, and the need to take on minimum wage jobs to support themselves while pursuing their career of interest.  One participant conferred that many of their preferred career interests could not be pursued due to the lack of funds and not having a viable option to arrange enough money through work or loan to pay for education.  They said Not being able to afford to go to school is another one.  I could have gone to school to do other things. . . . I could have went to school to become an engineer, medical assistant, veterinarian, something, but I wasn’t able to work to make the money to pay for my school.  If I get a student loan, it does not pay for     133  everything.  And I could not go back to school because I could not afford it. (Participant 1) According to another participant, finance was a definite roadblock.  They advised that if it had not been for the financial constraints, they “could have ended up with a very different career” (Participant 8, Age 31, Korea). Wish list.  The wish list factors related to their wish for financial support to pursue higher education and being financially secure in general. Funding for school.  I know there Is funding out there, but there is not enough; there is funding if you want to be a construction worker, if you drive a forklift if you want to use a Crane, you want to hold a sign on the side of the road.  But there is no funding to go to school to be a scientist, a doctor, big things that could change someone’s life. (Participant 1) Some participants also mentioned about the future with regards to envisaging their career unfold in a desirable way, if they will have enough money to make that happen.  For example, one participant mentioned that  I have all these plans; I’m thinking of getting into theology school because my ultimate goal or dream is to become medical missionary in Africa.  But I have to start thinking about how I’m going to pay my tuition for theology school, how I’m going to, afford my living. (Participant 3, Age 25, Korea) Language.  There were 2 participants who mentioned language as a helpful factor (11%), 6 participants mentioned 6 hindering incidents (33%) and one of the participants mentioned it in their wish list (6%).      134  Helping.  The helpful factor related to participant’s previous experience with English in their home country that helped them integrate well in Canada, which in turn contributed towards their doing well in career.  One participant reported that their familiarity with the formal use of English language put them at an advantage at the work place, even more than many native-born Canadians. Having a good foundation of English because I feel like that opens the door much more.  Even for students who grew up here, not all of them can write well or communicate English well. . . . Being able to communicate through theatre company, like having the confidence to communicate and then having done all the essay writing courses allowed me to be a better communicator.  I am still being told sometimes that the way I talk or the way I write is a lot more formal than people who grew up here, but when you are writing business emails, that’s actually a plus and when you’re trying to communicate to the outside people it’s actually a plus.  So that would be a plus in the career decision-making. (Participant 16, Age 34, Taiwan) Hindering.  The hindering factors included participants’ challenges with making social connections due to difficulties with English and being unable to make an impression during presentations and interviews, which is a requirement in many educational and occupational avenues.  Also, the lack of English language skills affected the confidence to engage in the same way as young people who did not have this difficulty.  One participant mentioned that “I am not as good as other people who were born here when it comes to doing interviews, presentations, because the culture that I come from, I was not really encouraged to speak up in class” (Participant 14, Age 28,     135  Korea).  Moreover, language limited some participants from establishing and maintaining social networks that have impacted their career opportunities and subsequent decision-making. I would say English was a hindering factor.  I feel like I was never really the mainstream; in high school I always hung out with those students who came to Canada in my age, usually Asians, so I never felt like I was part of the like a main society.  I clearly remember in my first chemistry lab class I had a partner who was Caucasian and then I really wanted to be a good friend with her, but it didn’t work out because of the language barrier.  I could see that she was slowly becoming more friends with others; it’s hard to build the same friendships with native speakers and it’s still true that I don’t have the same level of connection with native speakers. (Participant 8, Age 31, Korea) Another participant talked about how they experienced difficulty adjusting in spite of knowing the language.  They said that “obviously I still had a bit of an accent when I first came.  And the Canadian kids definitely, you know, picked on me for it” (Participant 2, Age 25, India).  The challenges with language added to the stress that immigrant young people were experiencing, and one participant, when thinking about career decision-making wondered, “do I really want to continue with this painful journey”? (Participant 18, Age 27, Colombia) Wish list.  The wish list in this category was a reflection of how their career choices and actions would have been different if they knew English better or had greater fluency with the language.  According to a participant     136  I wish I could be more fluent in English.  Say, like my sister, she was younger when she came, so basically she’s like native speaker even though she wasn’t born here.  But I think if I’m a native speaker I could’ve accomplished like something greater and then I would have more, I would be like more confident in myself. (Participant 15, Age 27, Taiwan) Overall, each of the categories with the different helping, hindering, and wish list items reflected the lived experiences of career decision-making of immigrant young people, who self-define as doing well.  The 9 categories capture the critical incidents that have influenced their career journey in Canada at different points of decision-making.  Scaling Results Answers to the scaling question.  All participants were asked to rate on a scale of zero to ten, where zero is doing very poorly with making career decisions, five is OK, and ten is doing very well, where would they place themselves.  The scaling question was asked twice in the interview, and it was hypothesized that the participant ratings would be different the second time.  The scaling question was initially asked just before the ECIT interview and was asked again after the ECIT interview.  The researcher wondered whether the interview would impact the ratings of participants the second time.  This was based on the rationale that the interview would help them to focus on specific experiences that have contributed towards doing well in career decision-making.  The impact of the ECIT research interview on the perception of participants’ situation has been investigated using the pre-test/post-test design and the impact has been documented (see Butterfield et al., 2009).  The assumption of impact follows from the postmodern literature along with narrative theory (Angrosino & Mays de Perez, 2000; White & Epston, 1990), which     137  argue that recalling and narrating personal stories lead to shift in the perspective of the experienced event.  In the current study, this assumption was tested in the form of a null hypothesis – viz., there will be no difference in participant ratings before and after the ECIT interviews.  The null hypothesis is reflective of the lack of previous evidence of the impact of the ECIT interview for the population of immigrant young people. The null hypothesis was tested using the t-test for the sample of 18 participants.  Though the mean ratings for the scaling question asked after the ECIT interview was higher than the mean rating before the interview (?̅?1 = 7.74, SD1 = .93; ?̅?2 = 7.81, SD2 = 1.03) the difference null hypothesis was retained (t (17) = .48, p = .64, d = .071) indicating that there was no significant difference between the ratings before and after the interview.  Rationale for the answers to the scaling question.  Every participant was asked to provide a justification for their response to the scaling question.  That is, after they had responded to the scaling question in terms of providing a numerical value between 1 and 10, they were asked a follow-up questions on why they had rated the way they had with reference to doing well with their career decision-making.  Based on the responses of the participants, seven themes emerged using Braun and Clarke’s (2006) method, which is summarized in Table 7 along with the participation rate and frequency.  Four of the seven themes focus on why they hadn’t provided a higher a value or a perfect value of 10.  This is the major theme of justifying low ratings, under which are discussed the four subthemes.  They included subthemes that relate to impediments in the past, challenges with decision-making, the possibility for further improvement, and the anticipation for specific positive changes in the future.  The other three subthemes come under the major     138  theme of justifying high ratings.  These subthemes were related to their present confidence or satisfaction with their career decision-making, contentment with their past efforts, and opportunities that have helped them with successful career decision-making.  Each of the above seven subthemes is discussed here along with participant quotes.  Table 7   Themes from the Scaling Question  Major Themes and Subthemes Participant Rate (%) Frequency (#) Justifying Low Ratings 72 28 Personal and Systemic Impediments 39 8 Challenges with Decision-Making 33 7 Anticipating Specific Future Outcome  33 7 Possible Room for Improvement 28 6 Justifying High Ratings 67 24 Present Satisfaction with Career  44 11 Increased Confidence and Knowledge about Future  33 7 Successful Past Efforts 17 6  Justifying low ratings.  Though the average rating for the scaling question was 7.74 out of 10, thirteen out of eighteen participants mentioned at least one factor that would have contributed to an even better score or the reason they were not able to rate themselves even higher.  The reference to the possibility of obtaining a higher score contributes to the major theme of justifying low ratings.  There were 28 codes that contributed to the four subthemes focusing on the participants’ inability to rate higher,     139  and they were (a) personal and systemic impediments, (b) challenges with decision-making, (c) anticipating specific future outcomes, and (d) possible room for improvement.  These subthemes are described below with illustrative sample quotes.  The first of the four subthemes was related to personal or systemic impediment that limited their options for decision-making.  This refers to some of their past choices they regret, or limits imposed on them due to circumstantial barriers such as lack of money.  This theme was represented by 8 items with a participation rate of 39%.  One of the participants reported as follows: It is easy to put these kind of career decisions aside on the back burner, and when really a decision has to be made, there is a lot more things you have to think about because there are a lot of financial pressures or other things because I’m no longer in just my early twenties.  I’m in my early thirties now and there are some more considerations. (Participant 12, Age 33, Taiwan) Another participant stated that, “I miss some points for making a safe choice rather than going after what I really want” (Participant 8, Age 31, Korea).  Other instances reflecting this subtheme was seen in participant responses that referred to “finishing degree when younger” (Participant 18, Age 27, Colombia) and “difficulty getting into the desired program” (Participant 17, Age 30, India). The second subtheme that emerged from the codes of participants who wished they had done even better include challenges with decision-making that hindered the participants from doing even better (7 items with 33% participation rate).  According to a participant, they found themselves doubting their capacity to effectively make decisions     140  when they have to navigate different career related transitions including making educational choices I’m doing well but at the same time I still have my struggles . . . and making decisions and the practical aspects after graduate school like finding a job and everything, I sometimes feel very clueless, so that’s probably like 2 points off there. (Participant 7, Age 27, China) This lack of confidence was mentioned by another participant who stated that “I made the right decision, but I still feel very unconfident about my abilities” (Participant 14, Age 28, Korea).  Participant 8 (Age 31, Korea) added that “overall I didn’t give a 10 because I feel like there were points where I could have been more decisive.” The third subtheme in the major theme associated with participants highlighting their hesitation to describe their career success with a perfect score of 10 was their anticipating a specific future outcome that would denote a higher level of success than the present.  This subtheme was represented by 7 items and 33% participation rate.  Here, participants mentioned anticipating both a future accomplishment like “obtaining a certification” (Participant 18, Age 27, Colombia) or “advancing to a managerial position” (Participant 1) and getting involved in their career in a more engaging way such as “wanting to be more active” (Participant 16, Age 34, Taiwan) or having their “job to have more impact on people” (Participant 5, Age 25, Iran).  Another example representing this subtheme was seen in the response of a participant who shared that “because I am waiting for a keyholder position to open up I think I am doing a little bit worse than I would like to be.  If I was a keyholder right now I would say 10” (Participant 1).     141  The fourth and final subtheme identified from the codes of participant response to the rationale for the scaling question under the major theme of justifying lower ratings emphasizes how the participants believed they still have room for improvement.  There were 6 items that represented this subtheme with a participation rate of 28%.  An example of this subtheme came from a participant response where they specified, “I am not there yet, but I am on the right track, I believe.  I am heading to the right direction, and still there are more to come, so I would not put myself in 10” (Participant 9, Age 26, Korea).  Another participant spoke about the gap between where they were currently and where they would like to be and related this gap to the difficulty in investing more into their career.  They reported that I obviously want to be more active or have more time.  Those are things that I would love but can’t really change because I’m refusing to sacrifice other things.  So that 1.5 is more room for improvement.  I do still feel parts missing but at least it’s a really small part, so that’s the 8.5. (Participant 16, Age 34, Taiwan) Justifying high ratings.  The second of the two major themes associated with participant’s rationale for their scaling response is their justification for high ratings and they represented past and present accomplishments providing a sense of both confidence and satisfaction.  For this major theme there were a total of 24 codes representing 67% of participants.  The following three subthemes underlying the major theme are discussed below: (a) present satisfaction with career, (b) increased confidence and knowledge about future, and (c) successful past efforts. The first and largest subtheme here was present satisfaction with their career with 8 items and 44% participation rate.  Here participants shared about the positive     142  experience related to their career decision-making.  These experiences ranged from the contentment of doing better than average to the enjoying of their current job.  Participant 11 (Age 29, China) stated that “I am still doing above average.  I mean it could be worse, it could be lot worse.  Someone could drop out or mess up.  Below 5 is pretty bad but above 5 is a pretty good.” On the same lines another participant reported  I would say I’m better than average . . . because I know what I want and if I know this job isn’t suitable for me, I wouldn’t even look at it; I think it’s just a waste of time.  On the other hand, I know what I’m looking for.  So, I think nothing will stop me from pursuing that. (Participant 15, Age 27, Taiwan) For one of the participants, they believed that they “have no regrets about the job” they are in right now (Participant 2, Age 25, India), and another participant stated that, “even if I do it all over again, I don’t necessarily think I’ll be better” (Participant 10, Age 33, Hong Kong).  Other participants also mentioned “feeling satisfied” (Participant 13, Age 26, Fiji), and “growing a lot” (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.) with reference to the outcomes of their career decision-making.  Another reason that contributed to the satisfaction of the participants, which was instrumental in their higher ratings was how their career decisions have helped them find a balance between their personal life and work life.  One of the participants said I have a really good balance between being happy about the jobs I do and being happy about life and not just be a workaholic and dedicate my whole life to my job. . . . That balance is so incredible, and I make sure I have time for friends; I make sure I have time for my partner; I make sure I have time for sports . . . so I     143  feel like it’s not just work, work, work but it’s everything around that. (Participant 16, Age 34, Taiwan) The second subtheme related to why the participants rated high on the scale was confidence about their decision-making and knowledge about future steps to take.  This subtheme was represented by 7 items with 33% participation rate.  This subtheme suggests that even though the participants were currently not at a position that may be described as a success, they knew that they were on their way and if they followed along the steps that led to that place, they were confident to reach it in a few years.  For example, participant 9 (Age 26, Korea) reported that “I am not there yet, but I am on the right track I believe.  Still there are more to come, so I would not put myself in 10.  I am getting there, I believe.”  I know what I want to do, I know why I want to do, and then I know what I have to do to achieve my goal.  You can’t say “oh I want to be nurse” but then you need to act on it.  You have to find what are the volunteer opportunities, what are your job options, what kind of nursing you want to do.  All these little details.  I’m also aware of those, I think; so, I think in terms of that I have a plan. (Participant 3, Age 25, Korea) The third and final subtheme under the major theme related to justifying their high ratings based on their satisfaction or confidence was their past effort that worked.  This subtheme of successful past record has 6 items with 17% participation rate.  One of the participants recalled that decision-making was not challenging because it was already done for them in a collective way in their family.  Since the participant agreed with the decision of the family, they rated their success with decision-making as high.  They said     144  that “I didn’t really struggle too much with making that choice. . . .I knew, I think, because of mom and my aunt, I knew, nursing is what I wanted to get into.  So, that choice wasn’t too hard” (Participant 17, Age 30, India).  Another participant recounted the different opportunities that helped them “step through doors”, leading them to rate higher on the scale.  They elaborated saying that “I’m really thankful I’ve been able to find a job that is somewhat in my field of study, and I’m under bosses who give me a lot of opportunities to grow and to expand my experience and my knowledge” (Participant 6, Age 25, U.S.). In responding to the scaling question, the participants were able to locate factors within themselves and external to them that have contributed to both their satisfaction with their past and present career decision-making and the opportunities that are likely to come their way in the future towards doing even better.  The themes reflected their recognition of the journey they have made so far and the possibility of continuing their career journey towards more desirable outcomes. Rationale for the difference in ratings.  As discussed before, the scaling question was asked twice in the interview – before the ECIT questions and after the ECIT questions.  It was observed that half the participants (9 out of 18) did not change their ratings the second time.  Six participants gave higher ratings when asked to rate after the ECIT questions, and 3 participants lowered their ratings.  These findings are summarized in Table 8.     145  Table 8  Participant Change in Ratings on the Scaling Question  Participant No. Gender Age Lowered Ratings Increased Ratings No Change 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18  M M F M F F F F M F M F M F F F F F  26 25 25 35 25 25 27 31 26 33 29 33 26 28 27 34 30 27   ✓     ✓        ✓     ✓  ✓ ✓   ✓    ✓    ✓     ✓    ✓  ✓ ✓ ✓  ✓  ✓  ✓ ✓   The 9 participants who changed the ratings were asked to provide a rationale for changing their ratings.  The participants who lowered their ratings after the ECIT interview conveyed that thinking through and responding to the ECIT questions made     146  them aware of greater possibilities and opportunities that lie ahead of them.  This, according to them, led them to increase the room between where they believe they are currently and the highest possible rating.  Participant 14 stated that “I think it’s maybe because I just talked about what has hindered me and what kind of things I would like for the future.  So, unconsciously I am thinking that these are missing”.  Similar impressions were shared by the other two participants who lowered their ratings. The participants who increased their ratings after the ECIT interview expressed that the interview helped them pay attention to their struggles and how they were able to overcome them.  Participant 16 (Age 34, Taiwan) stated that “having recalled the stories made me realize I have really gone through a lot through the years and it’s kind of incredible.  I should give myself more credit.” The opportunity to talk about their experiences in terms of career decision-making was instrumental in making one of the participants feel “thankful for all the opportunities” (Participant 2, Age 25, India) considering that they are “well off” at the moment.  Hence, they are able to give themselves a higher rating.  Another reason for a higher rating has to do with the opportunity to look at the big picture such that previous lapses are overlooked or to see the past in perspective.  Participant 8 (Age 31, Korea) held that “when I was talking about the hindrances and things that I regret I feel like those were really out of my control”.  Another participant stated Just reflecting on the actual experiences, I don’t think I really made any big mistakes in my decision making.  Because one thing I thought about before . . . was the fact that I listened to my friends back in university to go into business and I thought well what if that wasn’t the right decision.  But the thing is I never really     147  went into business anyway.  I completely changed my career path afterwards.  So, I don’t think it had such a big impact as I might have thought at the time. (Participant 4, Age 35, Switzerland) Another reason for increasing their ratings, reflected by some participants, was the awareness of personal change and growth as a result of recounting the incidents that helped and hindered their career decision-making.  Participant 12 (Age 33 Taiwan) recounted that “through these kinds of questions and through these kinds of reflections, I’ve seen that progress from being very shy and introverted person to now more of a more go getter.” Overall, all the participants who changed their ratings alluded to responding to the interview questions as a reason for making these adjustments.  They believed that recalling and talking about both helpful and hindering incidents shifted their perspective either towards giving themselves more credit for their career decision-making or recognizing more scope for improvement, thus reporting lower or higher ratings after the ECIT interviews. Conclusion This chapter focused on the summary of the responses of 18 participants in the study as obtained from the three components of the interview - the contextual component, the ECIT questions, and questions related to the impact of the interview on the participants.  The ECIT results are summarized in terms of the categorization of the helpful, hindering, and wish list items according to my interpretation of the data set.  Direct quotations have been used as far as possible to reflect the responses of the participants as accurately as possible.  The nine critical incident and wish list categories     148  obtained capture what participants reported to be the personal and interpersonal influences, experiential and external influences, and cultural and transitional influences that have shaped their career decision-making process.  In the following chapter these results will be linked to the existing literature in the field and the relationship will be discussed, also noting novel findings and implications.     149  Chapter Five: Discussion The discussion will address both the findings from the contextual questions and the ECIT results.  The chapter begins by comparing the results of the current study with the existing literature to highlight the extent to which the findings of this study are embedded in literature and point towards unique contributions and related implications.  The limitations of this study and suggestions for future research will then be discussed.  The chapter concludes with the implications of the study in terms of potential contribution towards further theory building and refinement, development of policy, recommendations for career development interventions for the population under consideration, and implications for further research. The Contextual Results There are two major sections that are covered under the contextual results – the meaning of career and the definition of doing well with career decision-making.  Findings from each of the sections help understand what participants reported in terms of helping or hindering factors in career decision-making.  Both these findings are discussed separately and are checked against the literature in career development. What does career mean? The four main themes that summarize the responses of the participants were planned integration of interests, skills, and experiences; personal fulfilment and identity; means of living and monetary stability; and more than self-gain or identifiable job.  Each of the four themes find varying degrees of support in literature.  The overall understanding of the term ‘career’, as provided by the participants in this study, may not be fully captured in any one definition of career in the literature due to the complexity of the meaning of career.  The notion of career as a goal directed and planned     150  action has been emphasized in some of the constructionist perspectives (e.g., Young et al., 2002).  This emphasis on goal setting and planning is a reflection of the understanding of career prevalent in a given culture and indicative of the individual’s identity as it is revealed through any act or expression that may be called as career-related.  More recently, there is also a denial of career as a strategic plan or having fixed properties, and career is seen more as a function of the narrative or discourse, opening up possibilities for negotiation of what career really means (Coupland, 2004).  However, for the participants in this study, there was a blending of the traditional definition of career with some of the newer understandings mentioned above.  On the one hand they believed that career is an integration of skills and experiences related to their areas of interest over a period of time, and on the other hand they did not subscribe to the traditional definitions of career emphasizing stability or organizational structure.  This was particularly relevant to the population in this study since the emphasis on skills and training in the definition of career was a significant theme for immigrant young people.  The acquisition of skills and the process of engaging in training is believed to take considerable amount of time, and hence the value attached to career is reflective of these long-term investments.  This is also consistent with one of the earlier classic definitions of career in the literature by Hall (1976, p. 4), where career is explained as “the individually-perceived sequence of attitudes and behaviors associated with work-related experiences and activities over the span of a person’s life.” This definition points to both accumulation and integration experiences as well as the life-long process career entails.  Adamson et al. (1998) have identified some of the common themes in the definition of career and have alluded to work roles and work-related positions in defining career.  Since the participants in the     151  current study were at or below the age of 35, and many of them still in school or early positions, they were focused on making their education and previous experience translate to work roles.  Another definition of career that mostly matches the responses of the participants in this study is provided by Arthur et al. (1989, p. 8) as “the evolving sequence of a person’s work experiences over time”.  The reference to time and experience in this definition as opposed to job and status is noteworthy here. The other theme in the definition of career that was echoed by the participants was personal fulfilment and identity.  Both these concepts have become increasingly important in discussing the meaning of career.  Now the inquiry changes from “what career is?” to “what career does?” From the responses of the participants, career is expected to provide them with a sense of fulfilment, meaning, and an identity.  It is not uncommon to see career development and vocational psychology literature incorporate positive psychology themes related to the effect of work in providing purpose and meaning to the individual with focus on strengths and positive emotions (Chen, 2001; Dik et al., 2013; Harzer & Ruch, 2013; Kahn & Fellows, 2013).  Participants in this study also shared about the deeper and existential needs they expected career to meet along with the potential for them to feel happy and fulfilled as they engage with their career.  In fact, work and career have been found to give meaning to people’s existence (Morin & Dassa, 2006; Wrzesniewski, 2003).  However, the participants in this study did expect career to provide them with meaning, more by default than by active striving.  That is, they believed that being successful in a career would automatically help them achieve meaning and purpose.  Recent research in the area of meaning-making through vocational endeavours suggest that the agentic function of meaning-making has gained more     152  prominence in the Western world, especially because of the complexity of wealthy societies, which is also reflected in the work organization (Bauman, 2000; Guichard et al., 2012).  It may be assumed that the bicultural identity of the participants has contributed towards accentuating the possibility of acquiring meaning through career, while not referencing their personal role in the process of finding meaning and fulfilment.  While the Canadian way of life does not necessarily provide them with a standardized or established reference for meaning-making (Guichard et al., 2012), they are likely to be encouraged from their culture of origin to depend on career to provide them with both tangible and intangible benefits.  Some of these benefits include happiness, fulfilment, and meaning.  This also applies to defining career in terms of contributing to personal identity since work has been found to become part of people’s identity (Vallerand & Houlfort, 2003).  For young adults, the process of thinking about career and conceptualizing their career trajectory is a developmental milestone in identity formation (Arnett, 2000; Laughland-Booÿ et al., 2017; Luyckx et al., 2010).  Hence, it was expected that the conceptualization of career by the participants would include identity as an integral component of their definition of career.  For most of the participants, they are still on their path towards adulthood due to the extended time period in Western societies for young adults to achieve a sense of identity based on some of the milestones that were traditionally considered for adults.  One such milestone is achieving career identity.  This is a process and it encompasses unification of individual’s perceptions of their past, present and future.  The participants who self-define as doing well are likely to achieve this sense of unification through coming to terms with their past successes and failures,     153  taking pride in their present decisions, and looking forward to a sense of self-fulfillment through their career.  This is consistent with earlier findings that demonstrate the role of time perspective and future outlook in identity formation (Crocetti et al., 2011; Laughland-Booÿ et al., 2017).  Another aspect related to identity being a part of career definition relates to the bicultural identity of the participants.  Identity theories including vocational identity theories have often conceived of identity development as an individual task that focuses on personal traits, beliefs, values, and strengths (McArdle et al., 2007).  Moreover, there has been an emphasis on reaching a set number of statuses in the process of career identity development such as career exploration, commitment, and reconsideration (Porfeli et al., 2011).  However, a constructivist view of career identity applies more to the results of this study due to the importance of contextualized understanding of identity in the participant’s definition of career.  Also, it may be argued that the reference to identity here is more of a subjective identity form related to career (Guichard et al., 2012).  This refers to the construction of identity that is dynamic and associated within a particular setting (here career) at a given time.  Hence, career identity would guide the individual to live and act in accordance with the self-constructed identity.  Navigating their identity in the context of multiple cultures and intersections of narratives facilitated the construction of career identities for the immigrant participants in the current study.  Thus, the career narrative, as informed by culture and social narrative has provided a source of identity for the participants. Related to identity and yet separate enough to warrant examination on its own right is the mentioning of passion in the definition of career.  This reference to passion in     154  defining career found in the participants’ accounts stood out as novel when compared to career literature.  While the relationship between work and passion has been explored before (Forest et al., 2011; Vallerand & Verner-Filion, 2013), passion has not been included as one of the defining aspects of career.  The understanding of passion, as seen in positive psychology, shares some commonality with how career is conceptualized.  Passion represents the strong proclivity towards those activities that people like to engage in and are willing to invest their time and energy in (Vallerand et al., 2003).  Also, the concept of passion has been examined in positive psychology in terms of happiness and self-growth that comes through engaging in activities that are loved (Philippe et al., 2009).  It is also not surprising that the participants mentioned passion along with identity because the very internalization of this inclination is tied to the identity of the person (Vallerand et al., 2003).  While passion and a sense of vocation may share some commonality, especially in terms of personal meaningfulness, they are also different.  The difference is in how vocation focuses on “other-oriented values” (Dik & Duffy, 2009), which is not a defining feature of passion.  The other oriented nature of vocation is discussed with the next subthemes. The final two subthemes that revealed the participant’s conceptualization of career may seem to contradict each other, but in fact they can best be seen as a continuum on which one end represents the self-serving purpose of career and the other end represents the altruistic aspect of career.  These relate to the pecuniary and non-pecuniary aspects of career.  The participants mentioned both the role of career in supporting their daily living through financial means as well as how career is perceived beyond income and monetary gains.  They also went a step further to highlight the role of career in     155  positively impacting the society.  These themes are discussed together in an attempt to compare and contrast them along with examining how they are represented in career literature.  The pecuniary aspect of career, though implied, has not been explicitly stated in the definition of career.  This has mostly appeared in career development literature dealing with career success (see Ng et al., 2005).  However, the reference to career as a means to an end – particularly pecuniary – is somewhat missing in Western career literature (other than when objective career success is discussed).  The definitions of career often refer to non-material aspects and mostly meeting the psychological needs of the person such as meaning, identity, and personal fulfilment.  The role of money, income, and salary in career decision-making has been acknowledged more explicitly when career decision-making is discussed with reference to international contexts and non-Western population (Leong et al., 2007; Liu et al., 2015).  Given the possible financial challenges the families of immigrants had to face associated with transitioning to a new country, where previous academic accomplishments and international experiences are devalued, the participants in the current study were most likely echoing the voice of their parents emphasizing financial stability as integral to the meaning of career.  They did not want to relive the negative experience of their parents.  On the contrary they were motivated to fulfill the dreams of their parents in terms of better financial gains, which was one of the reasons for immigrating to Canada.  Though career development literature considers financial security as an assumption of early or traditional career theories (Adamson et al., 1998), it is important to recognize that for many young people, especially immigrants, it was a central to their conception of career.     156  While financial security and monetary gains were important for the participants, they also identified the role of career in their life as going beyond pecuniary objectives.  It was surprising to see participants also mention the impact to society as embedded in the meaning of career.  None of the definitions reviewed in the literature and as discussed above considered this altruistic and social goal embedded in the definition of career.  The closest reference to other-oriented values in career definition can be seen in Dik and Duffy’s (2009) conceptualization of calling and vocation.  However, here the focus continues to be on the individual in terms of their personal motivation and individual contribution.  Career has most often been described as a very individualistic enterprise, and even when contextual factors are considered, it is more often a contributing factor than a focus of career activities itself.  The notion of impacting society, I believe, goes beyond career interest, which has been well documented in career theories (e.g., Holland’s theory).  Here the participants were not referring to a possible interest they may have that involve a social cause, but in fact they identified the purpose of career – irrespective of the field of choice – to build and transform society.  Thus, the participants preferred to see career as going beyond job-related activities and the salary earned to emphasize the meaningfulness of career as a collective good as opposed to individual usefulness.  This is a definite stride beyond the known mandate of vocational psychology to attend to social justice agenda.  While there has been a call for vocational psychologists to directly address social change as informed by the conception of moral responsibility (Blustein et al., 2005; Gainor, 2005), this call becomes more pronounced by defining career as unequivocally producing this social change.  Hence, the reference to the impact of career to society is a novel addition to the definition of career.     157  What does doing well mean? The themes that emerged in response to this contextual question may be organized in terms of successful outcomes of career decision-making, the satisfaction associated with the decisions, and anticipation of future success.  These results are compared to career literature associated with the notion of success in career development. Career success has been of special interest in career literature since the different theories, assessment methods, and interventions in career development have mostly focused on increasing the likelihood of success in clients (Heslin, 2005).  However, the very definition of success has initially been based on objective aspects of career such as salary and advancement in positions that could be measured (Ng et al., 2005).  With increased emphasis on subjective career success, the meaning of career success may be reflected as the “the experience of achieving goals that are personally meaningful to the individual, rather than those set by parents, peers, an organization, or society” (Mirvis & Hall, 1994, p. 366).  The participant responses in this study are believed to have captured the experiencing of these goals clearly, especially because of the qualitative nature of the research, which has been suggested as the best means to identify subjective career success (Shockley et al., 2016).  Participants’ notions of success, as reflected in their responses, made specific reference to their past, present and future experiences related to career decision-making. With regard to successful outcomes in the past, participants believed they were doing well if their decisions yielded results that were consistent with their expectations, which they attributed to making informed choices.  This, though making intuitive sense, departs from what the literature speaks with regards to uncertainty associated with career     158  decision-making (Trevor‐Roberts, 2006).  There are also several career theories that explicitly factor in the significance of uncertainty in career decision-making (e.g., Bird et al., 2002; Drodge, 2002; Gelatt, 1989; Krumboltz & Levin, 2004; Mitchell et al., 1999; Pryor & Bright, 2003).  However, from the participants’ responses, they have been able to sidestep the uncertainty and related challenges and managed to achieve positive outcomes.  It may be inferred that their decision-making and planning went as expected, which they attribute as success.  Here, the outcome of decision-making was used as the criterion for evaluating the efficacy of their decisions.  One possible explanation for this confidence in achieving their goals and highlighting the role of informed choice as a marker of success may have to do with their unique experience as immigrants.  This may be contrasted with what their parents experienced during the process of migrating to Canada (Wang & Palacios, 2017).  The transition to Canada for immigrant families has likely been marked with barriers and uncertainties, which the participants witnessed firsthand.  The struggles associated with this transition are often justified by the likelihood of success anticipated for the children of immigrant families.  Hence, it may be inferred that these participants and their parents engaged in a very concerted effort towards facilitating their success.  Evidence for this is also found in research related to economic integration of second-generation immigrants, which is somewhat similar to the what we found with the participants in this study.  Second generation immigrant young people in Canada were found to have longer years of schooling and have higher average annual income compared to young men and women with both Canadian-born parents (Palameta, 2007).  This has been partly attributed to the education of immigrant parents, who were qualified to come to Canada because of their skills and education.     159  When the participants reflected back on their experience, they believe that their determined planning and execution produced the expected results.  Also, their testimony of success is almost equal to acknowledging the family’s success in achieving the goals of transitioning to Canada.  It is indeed inspirational to see a group of individuals, who have overcome their challenges and made their career plans come to fruition, in spite of a volatile job market and the associated uncertainties.  In fact, for many of the participants the opportunity to work in the same field in which they have studied was considered a success.  This again alludes to seeing their career plan work.  The backdrop, of course, is the story of many of their parents who had to give up working in their field of training and experience after moving to Canada. Another parameter of success that is related to the previous indicator was the financial prospects related to their current or anticipated positions.  This has traditionally been considered one of the objective measures of career success (Stumpf & Tymon, 2012).  Though this has been identified through the subjective reporting of clients, the notion of career success linked to financial benefits stands out here in the same way as discussed in the definition of career.  The findings here are similar to what Dries et al. (2008) found, wherein the value attached to salary in defining career success has been found to be statistically significant.  The economic hardships that would have possibly hit previously successful immigrants renders a plausible explanation for this result.  The young participants were not only a witness to financial challenges of their parents associated with moving to Canada, but have also likely experienced some pressure to help the family overcome the setbacks of the past.  Hence, “doing well” cannot be conceived without reference to a high paying position.     160  The other theme that emerged was that of satisfaction.  This alludes to their present satisfaction with the career path or educational path they are in.  Consistent with the findings by Dries et al. (2008), satisfaction was reported to be an important criterion in identifying career success.  While the participants in Dries et al.’s (2008) research were judging career success of others based on vignettes, the participants in the current study expressed their own personal definition of career success.  Also, it can be inferred that their definition is an expression of their personal experiences since they identified themselves as doing well with career decision-making.  Studies in the literature also support the notion that objective factors of career success such as promotions, mobility, and salary increase have an impact on the subjective experience of satisfaction with career (see Stumpf & Tymon, 2012).  Finally, the reference to doing well in terms of what participants anticipate for the future has not been distinctly identified in the literature.  While, some of the participants had not yet experienced many of the objective aspects of career success mentioned above, they were anticipating this in the future.  They believed that having taken on a specific educational path or their entry into a professional job setting will lead them to positive outcomes in the future such as promotions or financial stability.  This might lead to the interpretation that though the experience of career satisfaction can be tied to objective success, it may also be related to anticipated success in terms of career advancement, salary change, or mobility.  Thus, career success for immigrant young people in the current study encompasses not only successful outcomes of the past and satisfaction in the present, but also the likelihood of professional growth and higher remuneration.  The not so perfect match between the participant responses and how career success has been     161  understood in literature may also reflect differences in culture and changes in perspective across generations, which have been previously identified as a factor contributing to variability in results (Dries, 2011) and discovered in the current study. Critical Incident and Wish List Categories The critical incidents reported by the clients, which were summarized into nine categories, revealed what participants believed were helping or hindering with regards to career decision-making.  They also included incidents that echoed what they wished were available or will be available in the future, contributing to improving their decisions. For the purpose of discussing the results, the nine categories have been organized into 3 groups based on the similarity between the categories and the common factors that the categories address in terms of what the participants found helpful, hindering, or wished would have existed or would exist in the future for making better career decisions.  The three groups are personal and interpersonal influences, experiential and external influences, and cultural and transitional influences that have both helped and hindered their career decision-making.  These three influences are discussed in the light of career literature. Personal and Interpersonal Influences.  This group encompassed three categories – personal qualities, family members/situation, and significant others outside family.  Here we see some of the highest helping categories and one of the highest hindering categories.  There is some literature that goes along with the results represented in this group in terms of the significance of personal and interpersonal factors in career decision-making (e.g., Garcia et al., 2015), while some other findings are novel.  Also, looking at this group from a broad perspective, these results are similar to what you     162  would expect for a non-immigrant population of the same age, but when it is examined more closely, some unique factors stand out that are more contextually relevant to the decision-making process of immigrant young people. Personal qualities.  The importance of personal qualities has been emphasized since Frank Parsons (1909) first advocated the integration of strengths and values in the process of making a “wise choice of a vocation” (p. 5).  With the emergence of positive psychology in counselling, the role of individual positive characteristics has come to the focus in both counselling psychology literature and more specifically vocational psychology research (Dik et al., 2015; Lopez et al., 2006; Seligman, 2002).  Participants in the current study made reference to qualities such as optimism, self-confidence, inner strength, perseverance, faith, and values; all of these characteristics have been discussed in vocational psychology as integral to career development (Savickas, 2003).  According to Mark Savickas (2003), contrary to popular belief, it is career counselling that informed the development of strength-based taxonomy in positive psychology and not vice versa.  Hence, the results in this study mostly confirm the established belief in the literature that the presence or absence of the aforementioned personal qualities is perceived to impact career decision-making.  One of the personal qualities that is less well integrated in career decision-making research from the positive psychology perspective is that of faith in God.  This is not the same as the notion of spirituality, but more specific to a belief that God will help them through the process of career development.  According to Leong and Wong (2003), Western theories of vocational psychology fail to address some of the orientations that are significant for people from other cultures.  They state that to be able to appreciate human optimum functioning, religious orientation of the people has to be     163  considered (Duffy & Dik, 2009).  In the current study, this theme emerged as noteworthy.  Hence, the results suggest that to fully and holistically understand the decision-making process of immigrant young people, it may be necessary to acknowledge the salience of faith in God as it applies to career decision-making.  Other strength-based qualities that are emphasized in the literature but were not identified by the participants or were not represented enough to form a category include hope, courage, resilience, integrity, and wellbeing.  However, each of these have been directly or indirectly referred to in at least one of the participant reports. The findings of this study in terms of personal qualities can also be compared with theories in vocational psychology that link personality characteristics with different aspects of career development such as decision-making.  Earlier research has shown that personal characteristics influence career development (Boudreau et al., 2001; Seibert & Kraimer, 2001).  Also, empirical research based on social cognitive career theory (SCCT) has established the salience of internal beliefs such as self-efficacy in career decision-making (Lent et al., 2016).  One of the dimensions of the big five personality theory that has been consistently found to predict career success is conscientiousness (John et al., 1991).  This is consistent with what the participants in the current study reported in a way suggesting that not being conscientious was a hinderance to their career decision-making.  A few broader factors that might be linked to personal characteristics included career adaptability, career optimism and perceived knowledge, which has been found to have a positive impact on career planning and decision-making (Rottinghaus et al., 2005).  Of the three factors, the current research provided support for career optimism, which is the belief that the future     164  will offer them the best possible outcomes and things will turn out well.  With regards to career adaptability and perceived knowledge, the participants did not report any incidents as either helpful or hindering.  This can possibly be explained by the developmental stage of the participants in the current study.  As participants are less than 35 years of age and are mostly navigating their initial career choices through educational pursuits or initial jobs, they are less likely to have encountered the need to reflect on their personal characteristics that relate to adaptability and perceived knowledge.  However, they have noted the role of experience as a significant helping factor and their lack of information as constituting one of the largest wish list categories. Interpersonal qualities.  Similar to the reporting of personal characteristics as a major helping factor, the participants in this study also emphasized interpersonal characteristics related to both family members and relationships with significant others outside the family as helping them do well with career decision-making.  The convergence of personal and interpersonal factors in vocational decision-making not only shows a shift from the traditional Western notion of career as a primarily individual enterprise but is also consistent with the more recent multicultural understanding of career.  The changing contexts in people’s environments and the personal developmental changes that influence an individual are mostly seen in the family setting, and they form the basis for relational influence in career development (Vondracek et al., 1986; Whiston & Keller, 2004).  According to Blustein (2011), we cannot assume that people make career decisions in a “relational vacuum”, and they have the autonomy in making intentional career choices based on interest and aspirations alone.  For people from non-    165  western cultures – similar to participants in this study – the relational orientation has been emphasized as one of the most important cultural competence in the career development process (Leong & Wong, 2003).  Studies focusing on career decision-making of immigrants have noted the role of family and relational factors in career development (Elez, 2014; Yakushko et al., 2008) Hence, it was not surprising to find the participants in this study report the family as an important helping factor.  However, the possible effect of bicultural identity of the participants is also reflected by about a quarter of participants who reported family as a hindering factor.  It may be inferred that the tension between family influence and personal preference might have contributed to participants reporting family as hindering.  In fact, this tension was expressed by some of the participants during the interview.  Acculturation literature throws light on factors related to intergenerational conflict and inconsistencies in cultural values as an explanation for some of the hindrances in career decision-making attributed to family by participants in the current study (Ghosh & Fouad, 2016; Taylor & Krahn, 2013). Similar to the role of family members in career decision-making, immigrant young people have reported the helpfulness of people outside their family, who have contributed to their success.  Given the transition to a new culture and the possible lack of knowledge of their parents in matters related to education and vocational opportunities in Canada, most immigrant young people have to depend on teachers, mentors, friends, supervisors, and their bosses at the workplace to navigate their vocational options and career progression in Canada.  Sinacore et al. (2011) examined the positive impact of significant others outside family through mentoring on career development for immigrant and international students in Canada.  They suggested that, in addition to valuable     166  information mentors provide, immigrants also receive social support and avenues for cultural integration through mentorship.  This is consistent with the findings in this study, wherein some of the participants emphatically attributed their career success to the role of significant others with whom they shared a mentor-like relationship.  Both in the current study and that of Sinacore et al. (2011), mentorship was identified more informally, the kind of relationship which emerged in their interaction with seniors on campus or colleagues at work, or how their supervisors or bosses were instrumental in assisting them with educational or career related challenges.  While both the literature and results from the current study pointed towards the helpfulness of significant others in career development of immigrants, the reason for this helpfulness can be found in the self-validation model by Ishiyama (1989, 1995).  According to this model, the external source of validation provided to immigrants facilitate cross-cultural adjustment.  The immigrant young people’s need for validation in various domains of their life can be met by “validation networks” that are available to them in the form of friends, mentors, and supervisors.  Thus, the very sense of support, acceptance, recognition, and fulfillment may be identified as encouraging immigrant young people to career success.  The results of the current study also supported the diverse nature of multiple mentoring relationships to provide support in the different domains, as suggested by previous studies (Benishek et al., 2004; Higgins & Thomas, 2001). Experiential and External Influences.  The second group of influences that were identified in this study pertain to participants’ past experiences and external factors that were reported as helping or hindering career decision-making, including what participants wished was available to them in the past or will be available in the future.      167  Both experience and external influences may be considered as characteristics of the past that may or may not be directly related to work but moderate the nature and quality of career decision-making.  The three ECIT categories discussed in this group included experience and/or training, external and/or serendipitous factors, and finances. Experience and/or training.  One of the top categories that summarized the wish list of participants in terms of career decision-making was experience and/or training.  Participants talked about their past experience or their wish to have an experience that included both work-related experience and other experiences such as related activities, training, career preparation, professional and also life lessons in general.  The wish of the participants to have gained more experience to maximize success is echoed in career development literature.  According to Arthur et al. (2005), the most important contributor to career development is the experience they gained over the years.  In fact, they argue that the very definition of career implies the build-up of experiences that will be unfolded over time.  Moreover, the notion of career success is summarized as “an outcome of a person’s career experiences” (Arthur et al., p. 179).  Since the participants in this study identified as doing well and also since they got an opportunity to talk about their success, it was easy for many participants to mention experience as a significant component of career decision-making across the helping, hindering, and wish list categories.  The total participation rate across the categories for experience was second only to personal qualities.  The higher proportion of participants reporting experience in their wish list may be attributed to the stage of career development, which is often identified with years of experience (Stumpf & Tymon, 2012).  Since the participants in the current study were     168  young adults and were likely in their early stages of career, they were foreseeing their advancement through accruing experiences both higher in quantity and diverse in quality.   What the literature has not fully addressed is the how the absence of experiences or not having the opportunities for gaining relevant experiences influence career decision-making.  This is more applicable to minorities and other marginalized groups, who do not share the same privilege that many people in the mainstream are able to access.  For participants in this study, the salience of experience stands out, especially the lack of it, due to the transitional challenges and not having the know-how of lining up experiences that would boost their career progress.  However, the participants who reported that their previous experiences increased the probability of their success, were quick to report it as a helpful factor.  Thus, this research highlights the capacity of the participants to make the experience work for them and find innovative ways to overcome the lack the experience towards successful career decision-making.  It is important to note that the parents of these participants found it extremely challenging to convince employers and regulatory bodies in Canada to honour their training and experience from their home countries (Guo, 2013).  The participants, therefore, were eager to use whatever experience they have to their advantage, having witnessed the discounting of foreign experience of their parents. External/Serendipitous factors.  Related to the theme of experience was the role of external and serendipitous factors that influenced career decision-making.  For this category the proportion of participants who reported a helping or a hindering incident was equal.  Also, very few participants anticipated an external or chance-based event to contribute to their career success.  The convergence of life and career in the decision-    169  making process of the participants was clearly evident through examining this category.  The participants acknowledged that such events were more associated with personal development, constraints and opportunities provided by the environment, and unexpected life circumstances affecting career decision-making – some of which were helpful, while others were barriers.  In career development literature, this has been recognized more as a norm in discussing the shift in career conceptualization over the years as writers identify how career conceptualization in the twenty-first century underlines decision-making in the context of limited alternatives and unexpected life circumstances (Adamson et al., 1998; Blustein et al., 2005; Duffy & Dik, 2009).  Duffy and Dik (2009) referred to life circumstances as “uncontrollable situations, events, and conditions that occur at an individual and societal level” (p. 33).  Bluestein et al. (2005) has argued for accounting for life circumstances, especially the negative ones that in turn affect the extent to which volition may be used in career decision-making.  The shifting of focus to external situations heralds the advent of modern career development approaches that distinguish contextual factors from aspects of the self, which has been traditionally considered as the major determinant of vocational decision-making.  Thus, this category supported the more recent belief in career development that people are not free to make choices as have been earlier believed to be.  Interestingly, in this study the participants also considered unexpected life events and circumstances to be helpful because they were able to recount instances in their life where decision-making towards career success were facilitated by such events.  One possible explanation for this may be drawn from Mitchell et al.’s (1999) theory of planned happenstance.  It is likely that the participants who encountered unexpected events in their life capitalized on these     170  serendipitous incidences.  While most studies addressing the external factors affecting career decision-making of immigrants have highlighted the detrimental effect of contextual factors, the current study also points to the perceived helpfulness of unexpected life circumstances.  Also, while career theories call for the need to address change, uncertainty, and ambiguity in career decision-making (Trevor-Roberts, 2006), and to move out of the rational framework of decision-making, not much empirical data has been used to substantiate the claim. Finally, the external influence that was mostly reported as hindering were incidents related to financial considerations in career decision-making.  Almost one third of the participants reported that they wished they were in a better financial position to make better career decisions.  The financial challenges reported by the participants in the current study may be mostly attributed to the struggle their families faced, and many continue to face as new immigrants to Canada.  According to Picot (2004), though Canada has been welcoming immigrants to promote economic growth of the country, most immigrants themselves do not acquire the level of economic stability they would have aspired to when they moved here.  This is in spite the fact that they are highly educated and have significant work experience in professional fields from their home country.  Moreover, age at immigration have been associated with the level of success immigrants to Canada experience, with those arriving at a later age, on average, making less money (Schaafsma & Sweetman, 2001).  With regards to the participants in the current study, the criteria for inclusion based on age – between 13 and 17 years when they came to Canada – suggest that their parents came to Canada at a more advanced age, leading to financial challenges for the participants.  Also, Schaafsma and Sweetman     171  (2001) concluded from their regression analysis based on census data with a sample size of 29,986 that immigrants who come to Canada in their late teens were less likely to be successful compared to their peers who were born in Canada.  It is interesting to note that the participants in this study were doing well in spite of the above predictions, suggesting their capacity to overcome the financial hurdles.  This may be linked to some of the personal and interpersonal strengths they reported and discussed earlier. Cultural and Transitional Influences.  The final group of influences that captured the essence of the remaining three categories – cultural/immigration related experiences; network, information, and resources; and language – was cultural and transitional influences.  These influences were unique to the experience of the participants being an immigrant and transitioning to a new culture.  While the other categories integrated the acculturation experience of the participants, the categories in this group stand out as revealing the distinctive features associated with career decision-making as applied to immigrant young people who came to Canada in their teens.  While one would expect cultural and immigration related experiences to hinder the career decision-making process of immigrant young people, it was surprising to find that many participants (28%), found cultural transitional factors to be helpful.  Hence, the mentioning of cultural transition as helpful is a novel finding in the current study.  There are several theories and research findings that explain how the process of acculturation, negotiating cultural identity, and making multiple transitions as a function of immigration thwart career decision-making (see Elez, 2014, Berry & Hou, 2017; Berry & Sabatier, 2010; Cohen & Kassan, 2018; Dheer & Lenartowicz, 2018).  However, this current study seeks an explanation for how cultural and transition-related characteristics in fact benefit     172  immigrant young people who are doing well.  One possible explanation that may be inferred from the responses of the participants is that the integration of a supportive climate and attitude from their families with the myriad of educational and career opportunities in Canada provided them with a unique platform for exploring and committing to pathways of future success.  They had the backing of their parents, who likely sacrificed their own career development to support their children’s education and vocational aspirations (Zuberi & Ptashnick, 2012).  This would have in turn made their children – the participants – feel responsible for giving back to their parents in terms of doing well, what they owe for their sacrifice (Storlie et al., 2016).  This was emphatically stated by many of the participants in the current study.  Thus, the sense of obligation may be attributed to have motivated them for success.  This is very unique to career decision-making of first-generation immigrant young people in Canada.  Moreover, many participants also reported that values of their own culture helped them achieve their career goals.  These values were not only related to work and career but also associated with interpersonal relationships, personal growth and self-care, and the meaning of life.  Additionally, the building up of resilience based on both witnessing and experiencing stress associated with multiple transitions is likely to have strengthened their resolve and capacity to handle change.  According to some of the participants, the negative effect of immigration such as discrimination, challenges with cultural identity, and lack of resources made them psychologically strong and that was evident through the years of education many of the participants were willing to complete in spite of the uncertainty they experienced in this country.  Finally, many participants reported being grateful to the Canadian culture in general as being accepting and open, though some of     173  them mentioned a few experiences of racism and discrimination.  The multicultural policy and attitude in Canada have possibly paved the way for better intercultural relations (Berry, 2013), which has been acknowledged as particularly salient in participants’ responses and has likely contributed to them doing well with career decision-making.  The role of a supportive family background, cherished values, the development of resilience, and openness to diversity in Canada as a positive cultural experience in career decision-making for immigrant young people doing well has not been explicated in previous studies.  Hence, this is a novel finding in the current study. The second category in this group of cultural and transitional influences included networks, information, and resources.  This category represented the highest proportion of participants stating as a wish list.  While aspects of cultural experiences have been affirmed as positively shaping career development, the participants wished they had integrated with the culture better and had obtained more relevant information and resources related to the career development.  The social capital theory of career success (Seibert et al., 2001) has been tested with new immigrant to Canada (Nakhaie & Kazemipur, 2013), which has shown that with increased social networks and access to information there is an increased probability of career success.  The participants in the current study reported that they lacked opportunities for networking, and they wished they knew people who would provide them with information pertinent to making career decisions in the Canadian context.  Some of the participants reported that their social networks were limited to other immigrants like themselves.  This homogeneity of social networks, according to social capital theory, is considered as detrimental to success (Nakhaie & Kazemipur, 2013).  While the social capital theory has been mostly applied     174  to first generation immigrants and in some instances to academic success of second-generation immigrants (see Kao & Rutherford, 2007), it has not been applied to career decision-making of immigrant young people.  The application of this theory to this group necessitates reference to barriers – internal and external – that limit the formation of appropriate social connections and a greater appreciation of the social structure that is unique to immigrants who come to Canada as teens.  In the current study the reference to barriers was in the report of the participants who identified multiple challenges in making connections and seeking information and resources during the initial years after moving to Canada.  This was a time when they were yet to overcome the culture shock and get a grasp of the English language along with other culture and identity related impediments. The third and final category included in the group of cultural and transitional influences was language, which about one-third of the participants identified as a hindrance to career decision-making.  It is interesting to note that many of the participants who knew English before coming to Canada had their own challenges with language after moving to Canada.  Some of the participants reported that they were singled out for their accent and dialect, which affected their self-confidence and opportunities for socialization.  Carlson and McHenry (2006) have found that perceived accent or dialect along with comprehensibility can affect the employability of immigrants.  Accent or dialect may prime the listener to attend to aspects of ethnicity and social recognition, which in turn may trigger stereotypes and an increased likelihood for discrimination and isolation.  Other potential barriers that participants experienced due to unfamiliarity with the English language included poor academic performance, challenges to social integration and cultural adaptation, hindrances to identity development, inability     175  to access resources and gain institutional supports, and an increased risk of mental health challenges (Arthur, 2000; Derwing & Waugh, 2012; Omidvar & Richmond, 2003; Westwood & Ishiyama, 1991; Yeh, 2003).  What makes language difficulty more relevant to career decision-making is the developmental stage at which the clients had to overcome this challenge.  It may be argued that the intersection of normal adolescent developmental challenges with the stress of acculturation including language acquisition poses a unique challenge for career decision-making, which calls for further investigation.  Integrating Contextual Results with ECIT and Wish List Categories When the themes emerging from participant responses to “what career means?” and “what doing well means?” are compared with the three influences that depict the nine ECIT categories, there is an overlap of some of the themes with the categories/influences.  Examining the overlap helps achieve a comprehensive picture of the career decision-making process of immigrant young people.  Hence, we not only have the helping, hindering and wish list factors, but we obtain these factors in the context of the participants’ personal meaning attached to career and doing well with career decision-making.  This comprehensive model is depicted in Figure 1.   In the figure, the three vertices of the triangle represent the career decision-making influences that were conceptualized from the ECIT results.  The rectangles intersecting the triangle are the major themes obtained from participants’ response to “what career means” and the rounded rectangles represent the themes obtained from participants’ response to “what doing well means”.  The rectangles and rounded        176                               Figure 1. Successful career decision-making of immigrant young people: Integrating meaning of career and success with helping, hindering, and wish list factors Legend:   = Influences based on ECIT categories  = Major themes related to the meaning of career  = Major themes related to the meaning of doing well with career decision-     making  Personal/Interpersonal Influences External/Experiential Influences Cultural/Transitional Influences Personal Fulfilment and Identity Integration of Experiences More than Self-Gain/ Job Monetary Stability/ Means of Living Attaining Identity and Meaning Achieving Good Things of Life Impacting Culture/ Society Mastering the World of Work Satisfaction and Meaning  Advancement and Future Growth Successful Choice/ Outcomes         177  rectangles are placed corresponding to the similarity of the themes with influences derived from ECIT categories.  For example, the theme of personal fulfilment and identity is placed near the vertex representing personal and interpersonal influences.  The three themes that did not share similarity with the influences represented by the vertices are placed along the sides of the triangle away from the vertices.  Thus, four themes out of seven are placed near the vertices and the remaining three are placed away.  Such a placement produces four regions within the large triangle, depicted by four small triangles – three of which share vertices with the larger triangle and one small triangle with its vertex touching the sides of the larger triangle.  The four regions have been labelled to capture the essence of the intersection of participant responses across the contextual and ECIT results.  These are (a) attaining identity and meaning, (b) mastering the world of work, (c) impacting culture/society, and (d) achieving good things of life.  The central region – achieving good things of life – shares aspects with all the other three regions.  This may also be corroborated with what the participants stated and what was identified as a novel finding.  For immigrant young people, economic stability and the opportunity for advancement is integral to their definition of successful career decision-making.  Thus, the four overarching conceptions mentioned above summarizes how immigrant young people identify career, doing well with career decision-making, and the experience of what helps and hinders career decision-making along with what they wish would have helped or will help in the future. Limitations of the Study There are a few limitations of the current study in spite of the care I took to adhere to the methodology as closely as possible.  These limitations are reported so as to     178  help the reader interpret and evaluate the findings of the research in an informed manner.  Limitations are related to constraints on generalizability, application, and usefulness of the study that might have been influenced by the design and/or method adopted for the current study.  Although, the study followed the ECIT protocol keeping in mind the most recent of the adaptations and credibility checks, there are a few areas that ECIT as a methodology might have not be able to address.  Also, while the aim of this research is best suited for ECIT, there are a few experiences of the participants that ECIT may not have been able to capture.  These limitations also point towards different options and possibilities for future research.  Firstly, there were a few occasions when the subjective judgment of the researcher might have influenced the interpretations of the findings.  From a post-positivist perspective, these can pose some difficulties.  Although the best effort to overcome these subjective judgments was taken using the credibility checks discussed earlier, they may not be fully overcome.  For example, while the placement of critical incident into categories was cross-checked with an expert, the actual creation of the categories was based on the subjective judgment of the researcher alone. Secondly, there may be some challenges with regards to how well the participants have reported their experience as pertaining to the aim of the study.  Although, CIT was initially devised for observing critical incidents, the self-reporting of incidents is likely to be influenced by language and memory-related factors.  In the current study, though the participants were recruited based on their knowledge of the English language, only 4 of the 18 participants conveyed that they grew up speaking English at home.  Hence, the choice of words to describe their experience is likely to be limited and I also observed the     179  same during the interview.  I saw some of the participants struggling to articulate their experience using an English word.  As was expected from the ECIT interview format, I did not provide them with words, but waited to hear them use their own phrases and expressions.  Similarly, the reporting of incidents may be influenced by the unreliable nature of human memory.  Though they had the opportunity to add incidents in the second interview, most participants only confirmed whether the critical incidents were classified correctly.  One possible way to overcome this would be to provide the participants with the interview guide and giving them a few weeks to fill in the incidents, which can be elaborated during the actual interview. Thirdly, the self-selection of the participants based on their self-definition of doing well with career decision-making may limit the extent to which the study can be generalized.  This is a known limitation of qualitative studies in general (Merriam, 2009).  While the subjective definition honours and values the unique career trajectory of every individual, the application of what has helped or hindered them with career decision-making may not be extended to all immigrant young people.  When analyzing what participants reported as doing well, it was noticed that the criteria used for making this judgment was so varied that it would be almost impossible to identify any homogeneity in the sample.  Also, the reason for the number of helping incidents reported (110) being almost twice the number of hindering incidents (54) may be explained by the possible bias that would have led the participants to feel consistent with their self-definition of doing well.  An alternate explanation, however, is that since the participants were doing well, they did not experience as many hindering incidents.      180  Fourthly, it would be difficult to confirm whether participants’ reports were based on career or career decision-making.  This is especially true with the wish list question.  There was no reliable way to ensure whether the participants were responding to “what would have helped with your career decision-making?” instead of “what would have helped with career?” The responses of the participants lead me to believe that in spite of reiterating the emphasis on career decision-making, many participants interpreted this as career in general.  The decision-making aspect, though included in the overall conceptualization of career, is different from career itself. Fifthly, the extent to which the sample is representative of the population of immigrant young people in Canada is limited.  The participants in the study do not include young people from many countries (only 11 countries represented), backgrounds, ethnicities, and is not balanced with respect to gender, age, education, and income.  Overall, the participants were well educated and 28% of the participants were in school during the time of the interview.  The snowball sampling lead to overrepresentation of Korean immigrant participants.  Also, 78% of the participants were single.  Most of the participants were from the Lower Mainland of British Columbia.  I also faced challenges with recruiting participants.  Only when the honorarium to participate in the study was raised from $25 to $75 did I get more participants.  This might be related to the nature of the population who are young and doing well, not having time to spare for research unless they are well compensated.  Moreover, two participants did not respond to the request for the second interview. Sixthly, due to the exploratory nature of the study, the focus was mainly on identifying the factors that helped and hindered career decision-making.  However, the     181  details of the experience and meaning attached to these experiences were not fully captured.  The methodology did not provide an opportunity for more in-depth and elaborate investigation of the contexts related to the incidents.  Although, participants were asked to provide the importance of the incident in terms of how the incident was helpful or hindering along with a relevant example, the analysis of the data was not focused on this information provided.  If there was a provision to also include this data, the results would have been richer, capturing the nuances of experiences in line with many other interpretive research methods. Implications for Future Research The current ECIT study helped identify what immigrant young people who self-defined as doing well found helpful and hindering with their career decision-making along with what they wished were available in the past or will be available in the future.  The findings of the study point towards possible expansion of empirical knowledge base related to career decision-making of immigrant young people.  This would help develop and adapt career-based intervention programs in accordance with how career is conceptualized from their perspective.  Also, the meaning of doing well, once clarified, can be used for developing assessment tools that are reliable and valid for the immigrant young people to assess benchmarks and target relevant interventions. For example, in the current study, doing well has been operationalized as defined by the participants in terms of success with the outcome of career decision-making, financial stability, and gaining work experience along with personal satisfaction and opportunities for future growth.   More importantly, the identified categories of helping and hindering factors may be used for domain-specific investigation of career decision-making for this population.  The     182  direction for future research is discussed with reference to recommendations for the use of varied methodology and extending the inquiry to different populations. Methodological recommendations.  The exploratory design of the study may be considered as one of the early research endeavours in this area because there is no other known existing research examining this question.  The results obtained in the study help identify indicators for future investigation and call for the use of other methodologies to answer questions that are likely beyond the scope of ECIT.  As a methodology, ECIT provided a solid starting point for exploration.  However, as discussed earlier, ECIT is only able to answer research questions of a particular type.  Also, some of the subjective interpretations in ECIT (discussed in the above section), especially with regards to category formation, may need to be refined to increase the rigour of the methodology.  Moreover, the use of other methodologies can extend our knowledge with regards to career decision-making of immigrant young people. There is a need to use both qualitative and quantitative methodologies to examine how immigrant young people compare with other populations with regards to the meaning of career.  Studying career decision-making of immigrant young people using varied research designs can help identify aspects of decision-making that are not limited to what semi-structured interviews can yield.  For example, it would be really useful to conduct a longitudinal study to examine how the conception of career, doing well, and what was perceived as helpful and hindering change or remain same over time.  Since the participants in the study were all below 35 years, it would help to track how they use their initial advantage for navigating career success in the future.  The wish list for the future may also be studied to examine how those contributed to their future career development.     183  Also, while the current study provided insight into the incidents that participants believed were significant for career decision-making, it would benefit to study the process of career decision-making from a more interpretative framework in terms of the meaning attached to the story of their career journey and their expectation into the future.  A research with this theme is already underway at the counselling psychology program at UBC. Diverse populations and applications.  The meaning of career and doing well with career decision-making, as reported by the participants in the current study, need to be examined in the light of other populations as well as what career development theories and career practitioners identify in the modern context.  Also, in order to identify how decision-making in general is related to career decision-making, it would help to compare the categories found in the current study with other decision-making strategies and considerations outside of career.  This would help identify whether and to what extent career and life decisions intersect for immigrant young people. The transitional pattern of young immigrants depending upon their age and stage of development may be studied to find out how career development is influenced by when they moved to Canada and whether they are first generation, 1.5 generation or second-generation immigrants (Cheung, et al., 2011).  In the current study, the participants may be considered 1.5 generation because they moved to Canada in their early teens (Shields & Lujan, 2018), and they retain the culture of their country of origin.  It would be beneficial to investigate whether the generational status influence career decision-making.     184  Another area that would benefit from further investigation is to find how other minority youth populations in Canada (e.g., Indigenous people, sexual minorities, linguistic minorities and individuals with developmental challenges etc.) are making career decisions and doing well.  Though there are some similar systemic factors challenging the career development of all youth in Canada, some groups are more vulnerable, and the opportunities, strengths and resources are different. Implications for Theory Some of the more recent theories in career development recognize the role of diversity, the influence of multicultural facets, and the need to address systemic oppression in career theories.  However, what is missing is the emphasis on developmental and identity-related dynamics that intersect with cultural transitions as seen in 1.5 generation immigrations who are maximizing their career success through trusting their strengths and garnering support through interpersonal relationships.  The current study identifies some of the positive elements tied to bicultural identity and the first-hand witnessing of their parents’ transition to Canada, and how that is incorporated into the career development of young people.  While the role of family has been emphasized before, the current study calls for looking beyond the influence of the family to actually examine the career development of the family as a whole.  For many immigrant families, the career development of their children is the career development of the family because each member of the family has invested in varying amounts towards the success of individual members.  Similarly, the meaning and purpose attached to career is shared with other members of the family.  Hence, for career development theory     185  to be culturally relevant, especially for immigrant youth, the focus on personal qualities in the context of family and community factors need to be examined.  Another pertinent point is to do with adapting existing models to the realities of immigrant young people making career decisions in Canada.  While it has been reiterated in the literature that career theories based on individual interests, skills and goals are lacking in many respects for people from non-Western cultures, it is also true that many culturally appropriate theories for immigrants do not fully acknowledge the unique context of bicultural youth.  Hence, it would not be appropriate to apply models that are focused on their parents to fit with the realities of the young people who moved to Canada in their teens.  While theories are expected to be broad enough to be applicable to somewhat universal settings (Kuhn, 1977), the contextual disparities here are too many for accommodating either individual-first theories or multicultural theories to fully understand the career development of immigrant young people.  This is evident from some of the novel findings in the current study such as how career is defined by the participants and the emphasis on meaning, purpose and the need to impact society through career.  Also, while it was surprising to find that many participants held on to some of the traditional conceptualization of career in terms of stability and advancement, it also makes sense to recognize the source of these beliefs as coming from the instability and regression their families experienced when they moved to Canada.  However, the acculturation experience contributes towards adopting some of the more western ideas of emphasizing individual characteristics and personal meaning in career development.  A greater appreciation of the blending of values and expectations from multiple cultures comes from the contrasting experience of their parents with that of their own.  For     186  example, it is true that for the parents of these young people, they did not have the opportunities and choices to make career decisions based on interest, calling or passion alone (Eggerth & Flynn, 2012); however, for many young immigrants, this has changed at least partially, if not fully, because of the sacrifices made by their parents (Zuberi & Ptashnick, 2012).  Thus, the theoretical implication with regards to the current study to some extent hinges on closely examining the ‘linked lives’ of the participants (Taylor and Krahn, 2013), which refers to the intergenerational influence that shapes the career development of young immigrants. Another implication for theory development is the need to comprehensively describe the balance between recognizing the inevitability of serendipitous events and yet planning one’s career in the long-term.  Some work in this direction for immigrants has been initiated by Arulmani (2019) in his cultural preparedness approach focusing on integrating aspiration and engagement.  However, it would be beneficial to look at this dynamic in the context of youth career development. Implications for Practice and Policy (with Recommendations) Some considerations for practice and policy follow from the findings of the current study.  First, the findings of the current study point towards the need of immigrant young people to have certain exposures and gain some experiences that Canadian-born young people may not need to the same extent.  Considering how participants mentioned all previous experience as contributing towards better career decision-making, it would make sense to intentionally and systematically arrange for these experiences to young people.  While many Canadian-born young people get involved in some work-related activities at an earlier age, immigrant young people, due to cultural factors, are likely to     187  postpone gaining work or voluntary experience (Anisef & Kilbride, 2003).  Hence, policy and intervention to help immigrant young people get exposed to different work cultures early on may be emphasized Second, since identity has been found to be intricately linked to career decision-making, it is important to integrate identity work with career development. In defining the meaning of career, participants talked about career in terms of personal identity and fulfilment.   While in high school students get an opportunity for career exploration and navigate vocational information, the emphasis is mostly on increasing their familiarity with the world of work and some self-knowledge, which is often limited to interests, values, and personality.  However, when immigrant students get an opportunity to meet with career counsellors, who are also trained in identity-related personal counselling, the potential to make meaningful career decisions in the context of their unique culture and family is heightened. Third, career as a means to impact others and the society needs to be underscored when career-related programs are instituted, and they may also become a part of career counselling.  Based on the experiences of themselves and their family members along with the collective orientation that many immigrant young people have, they would want to see their career make a positive impact on others and particularly the immigrant community, which was reported by some participants and discussed earlier.  Hence, the implication is to facilitate more personal and meaning-based discussion about the nature of impact they would like to make and how they foresee their career development contribute towards the same.  This process can be easily missed because it is not very common to articulate the impact of individual career on the society, unless a deliberate     188  attempt is made.  Also, policymakers may reconsider how career information is disseminated (e.g., job bank Canada) and vocational titles and classifications of occupational titles are represented (e.g., national occupational classification) to not only describe job tasks, expected salaries, and projected scope of the job, but also the specific impact the job makes on people groups and society as a whole. Fourth, since the financial challenges for immigrant young people are more prominent during the initial years during their post-secondary education, both policy and intervention may be targeted to help them get a head start with financial assistance in the form of loans or bursaries.  As is evident from the current study, the relationship between education and perception of success with career decision-making is prominent.  Also, many of the educational opportunities and the quality of education in Canada may not be available to the same extent in their country of origin, which likely makes the educational pursuits more coveted.  Also, as was reported by many of the participants, education is highly valued in some of the Asian/South Asian culture.  Therefore, to make the best of their motivation to purse higher education, avenues for financial assistance and help with financial planning would be of immense benefit. Fifth, the importance of social connections outside family is clear from participant reports and hence creating spaces where immigrant young people can find encouragement, recognition and support is critical.  The role of friends, supervisors, and teachers in the career development process has been outlined.  Now, the implication for both career practitioners, counsellors and policymakers is to make this support available and real.  For example, the organization of community-based events and mentoring opportunities is believed to go a long way in helping immigrant young people do well.      189  With targeted programs and training, supervisors, teachers, and mentors can maximize the support provided for immigrant young people, especially preparing them for career success.  This has been attested as a helpful factor by the participants in the study.  Also, the access to resources, information, and social networks can be facilitated through such targeted intervention.  Schultheiss and Davis (2015) proposed an active advocacy on the part of career practitioners and counsellors to ensure that immigrants can fully access the resources and information that is most helpful for them. Sixth, strength-based approaches are especially relevant for leveraging success of immigrant young people.  All of the participants mentioned their positive personal qualities as having helped them to do well with career decision-making.  While this is applicable to all young people and it may be argued as one of the important contributions of positive psychology, for immigrant young people, their person qualities are to be seen as a solid anchor amidst the challenges of transition and acculturation stress.  Hence, when counsellors and career practitioners support their career development focusing on client strengths, the young people can feel more in control and use abilities that are natural to them instead of merely coping with the stress associated with learning new skills as a result of immigration. Seventh, related to the earlier implication, immigrant young people also have specific strengths related to diversity and biculturalism.  This was highlighted in the results and points to the implication that when immigrant young people can access and engage their culturally endowed talents and skills, they are more likely to thrive.  Hence, through avenues where diversity is valued and multicultural competencies are recognized, we can expect immigrant young people to do well and succeed in career     190  decision-making.  Though Canada has come a long way in valuing and respecting diversity in the workplace, there are still many hurdles to overcome.  The policy-making implication here is to continue celebrating and promoting diversity, especially in settings and context where immigrant young people are likely to be getting their initial work experience. Eighth and final implication is that immigrant young people would benefit from learning to manage uncertainty and adopting a belief system that welcomes unplanned and serendipitous events in life.  While this is a great learning for all people, the life circumstances of immigrant young people makes this especially salient for this group of people.  Immigrants have often been subjected to several failed plans and uncertainties related to their future in Canada (Chen, 2008).  This can make the young people want to control their future and not be prepared for the positives of unplanned events.  Hence, any opportunity to learn how to manage uncertainty and have multiple options available can help them become open to experiences that are unanticipated. Conclusion This study makes a meaningful contribution towards understanding career decision-making of immigrant young people who are doing well, especially in terms of what has helped and hindered them in this process.  It capitalized on the opportunity to explore the complexities associated with the process of navigating career goals for the culturally diverse group of young participants in this study.  The results obtained throw light on the several factors and influences that contributed towards their success with decision-making.  The findings of the study provide some tangible applications with regards to theory and practice to engender success for immigrant young people.  Based     191  on the experiences of the participants in this study – both their strengths and challenges faced in their transition to Canada – policy level interventions and tools and strategies for career practitioners and counsellors may be developed.  Also, this exploratory study opens up the possibility for investigating this area in a more targeted way to answer many more related questions associated with career development of immigrant young people. This study heralds the usefulness of a positive outlook in studying immigrant career decision-making and the findings of the study call for maintaining the optimism associated with the transition of immigrant young people to Canada.  While the challenges and obstacles in career decision-making for this population is real and sometimes discouraging, there is hope for the future based on the strengths they possess and the capacity to turn adversities into opportunities.  Keeping in mind the demographic shift towards increasing number of immigrants and their children coming to Canada, I hope that this study would both provide an initial orientation as well as stimulate more research, particularly focusing on facilitating success with career decision-making.      192  References Abele, A. E., & Spurk, D. (2009). How do objective and subjective career success interrelate over time? Journal of Occupational and Organizational Psychology, 82, 803–824. Abele, F., & Delic, S. (2014, January). Aboriginal youth employment in northern Canada: Knowledge synthesis report. Carleton Centre for Community Research. 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International Migration, 50(s1), e60-e93. doi:10.1111/j.1468-2435.2010.00659.x     235  Appendices Appendix A: Recruitment Poster      236  Appendix B: Screening Questions      237  Appendix C: Consent Form       238       239        240  Appendix D: Interview Guide ECIT Interview Guide How Immigrant Young Adults Make Career Decisions    Participant #:  ________________    Date:  __________________  Interview Start Time:  _______________  *To the interviewer: this guide contains material that should be read to each participant. Material that does not need to be read is demarcated with brackets ([]); otherwise it should be read out loud.  Purpose of the Study  [Welcome the participant to the study]  Our purpose in this study is to understand how immigrant young people make career decisions.   [At this point, please review the informed consent form with the participant and answer any questions they have that pertain to informed consent].                       241  Part One: What Does Career Mean to You?  In this study we are interested in how immigrant young people make career decisions. But first we want to know how you define career in your own life. We are not just interested in long-term paid careers, but in any type of role whether it is paid or unpaid, long or short, including jobs, work, employment, positions, volunteering, care-giving, working in the home, trade, fringe work, or anything else you can think of.   3. Can you tell me what career means to you in the context of your own life?          4. Because you are here, I know that you feel that you are doing well with your career decision-making. Can you tell me what doing well with career decision-making means to you?          242  In the last section, we discussed what doing well in making career decisions means to           you. On a scale of 0 – 10, where 0 is doing very poorly with making career decisions,            5 is OK, and 10 is doing very well, where would you place yourself?                             ________________________________________________                            0       1       2       3       4       5       6       7       8       9       10                                                       Doing Poorly                                OK                                 Doing Well                                     243  Part Two: Enhanced Critical Incident Interview  [Preamble:] In this part of the interview we will discuss the career decisions you have made and what has helped or hindered you in making these decisions.   [Transition to Critical Incident questions:] You rated yourself as a 5-6 [or whatever the participant rated him- or herself in question 1 (b) above] in making the career decisions you just described.   a. What has helped you in doing well with making career decisions?  (Probes: What was the incident/factor? How did it impact you? – e.g.: “Social support is helping.  How is it helping?” Can you give me a specific example where social support helped?  How did that help you to do well in making career decisions?)  Helpful Factor & What it Means to Participant (What do you mean by…?) Importance (How did it help?  Tell me what it was about...that you find helpful.) Example (What led up to it?  Incident.  Outcome of incident.)                                     244  Helpful Factor & What it Means to Participant (What do you mean by …?) Importance (How did it help?  Tell me what it was about … that you find helpful.) Example (What led up to it?  Incident.  Outcome of incident.)                                                   245  Helpful Factor & What it Means to Participant (What do you mean by …?) Importance (How did it help?  Tell me what it was about … that you find helpful.) Example (What led up to it?  Incident.  Outcome of incident.)                                              This concludes another set of questions regarding your experience. Before we move on to the next set of questions about what hindered you in making career decisions, I would like to make sure I have not missed anything you have said up to this point. [summarize helping items up to this point].      246  b. Now, I’m wondering what things have made it more difficult for you to do well in making career decisions? (Alternative question: What kinds of things have happened that made it harder for you to do well?)  Hindering Factor & What it Means to Participant (What do you mean by …?) Importance (How did it hinder?  Tell me what it was about … that you find unhelpful.) Example (What led up to it?  Incident.  Outcome of incident.)                                            247  Hindering Factor & What it Means to Participant (What do you mean by …?) Importance (How did it hinder?  Tell me what it was about … that you find unhelpful.) Example (What led up to it?  Incident.  Outcome of incident.)                                                    248  Hindering Factor & What it Means to Participant (What do you mean by …?) Importance (How did it hinder?  Tell me what it was about … that you find unhelpful.) Example (What led up to it?  Incident.  Outcome of incident.)                             This concludes another set of questions regarding your experience. Before we move on to the next set of questions, I would like to make sure I have not missed anything you have said up to this point (summarize hindering items as indicated by the participant).      249  c. We’ve talked about what’s helped you to do well (name them), and some things that have made it more difficult for you to do well in making career decisions (name them).  Are there other things that would have helped in the past that were not available to you, or that will help in the future if they become available? (Alternative question: I wonder what else might be helpful to you that you haven’t had access to?)  Wish List Item & What it Means to Participant (What do you mean by …?) Past (p) or Future (f) [E.g. Would have helped/would help] Importance (How would it help?  Tell me what it is about … that you would find helpful.) Example (In what circumstances might this be helpful?)                                              250  Wish List Item & What it Means to Participant (What do you mean by …?) Past (p) or Future (f) [E.g. Would have helped/would help] Importance (How would it help?  Tell me what it is about … that you would find helpful.) Example (In what circumstances might this be helpful?)                                               251  Wish List Item & What it Means to Participant (What do you mean by …?) Past (p) or Future (f) [E.g. Would have helped/would help] Importance (How would it help?  Tell me what it is about … that you would find helpful.) Example (In what circumstances might this be helpful?)                                          Thank you. Before we move on to the final set of questions, I want to make sure I didn’t miss anything [summarize items regarding what would have helped and what would potentially help].       252  d. Now that you’ve had a chance to reflect back on what’s helped and hindered, where would you place yourself on the same scale we discussed earlier?  The scale is from 0 – 10, where 0 is doing very poorly, 5 is OK, and 10 is doing very well.                             ________________________________________________                            0       1       2       3       4       5       6       7       8       9       10                                                       Doing Poorly                                OK                                  Doing Well     e. What’s made the difference?  (To be asked only if there is a difference between the first and second scaling question ratings.)       253   f. Have you always done well with making career decisions?    (Circle one)  Yes  No            g. If not, when did this change for you?                 h. What happened that caused you to begin handling career decisions well?        254  Part Three: Demographic Information This is that last part of the interview. I will ask you a few questions to gather demographic information. This will be reported in aggregate form, such as totals and averages, and will not identify you individually.   1. Where is your career at right now, in terms of activities you’re currently engaged in? (Examples could be jobs, roles, projects, contributions, learning, spiritual processes, or however you define current career activities)        2. For each activity, it is part of anything larger in the world like an area, field, industry, project, or movement? (E.g. forestry, parenting, community healing)      3. For each activity, how long have you been involved? Are there any levels or statuses you hold in the activity? (E.g. third year apprentice welder; first year of being a mother)     4. Age  5. Gender (how would you describe your gender?)  6. Income level (household)   7. Length of time in Canada; 1st language  8. Marital status  9. Family status (household composition) / parental status: How is your household and immediate family organized? Who do you live with?  10. Education: Canadian Education System/International Education/Informal, Traditional Indigenous Education  Interview Start/End Time:  _______________  Length of interview:  ______________  Interviewer’s Name:  ___________________________________  Interview location:  _____________________________________ 


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