The Malta Career Guidance Association in collaboration with Euroguidance MT organised the conference entitled ‘Professionalising the Career Guidance Sector’. During the event concrete ways as to how the sector should develop in order to strengthen the competence base of the career guidance practitioners in Malta were discussed and proposed. MCGA presented research findings relating to professionalisation conducted with stakeholders in the field. Proposals for professionalisation were also outlined. Dr Mary McMahon, Honorary Senior Lecturer in the School of Education at The University of Queensland and Vice-President of the Career Industry Council of Australia (CICA) addressed the Conference. Her keynote speech was entitled ‘Professionalising Career Guidance: The Australian Experience. A Journey, Not a Destination’. Dr Mc Mahon put forward the challenges associated with such a move whilst referring to her experience of professionalising the career guidance sector in Australia. Workshops followed where practitioners were given the opportunity to provide their reactions to the proposals.
Challenging issues highlighted include the importance of acknowledging the number of years of experience of employees working in the sector but who do not hold qualifications and the debate over the qualification one needs to hold in order to be considered a ‘professional’. The suggestions that the profession can be divided into 3 tiers – with practitioners holding a full or partial professional status was not well received by all present. On the other hand the importance of continuous professional development; the setting up of ethics and the importance of setting up standards for the profession were all welcomed. The research document is still open for feedback. The report can be obtained by contacting MCGA on the following email address: firstname.lastname@example.org