Thousands of nervous students and their families are awaiting their grades today as this year’s A level, AS level and vocational qualification results are published.

The Career Development Institute, the professional body for career development, would like to congratulate everyone who has achieved the grades they wanted and wish them all the best as they progress to the next stage of their education or career.

For those who haven’t achieved the expected grades, our first piece of advice is Don’t Panic! It may feel like the end of the world, but your career won’t be defined by these results. As the world of work is continually changing, anyone leaving school or college now can expect to have multiple careers over their lifetime, and there are many routes to progressing in any chosen field.

Take the time to explore the options available – from going to university, doing an apprenticeship, taking a year to re-sit exams, completing a vocational course, gaining some work experience or even travelling. While your first choice may not be possible right now, consider why you chose that route and where you hoped it would take you, then look at all the options to achieve the same goal.

Family and teachers may be able to help you work through those options, and if you need more help contact the Careers Adviser in your school or college. Careers Advisers are trained to offer impartial, expert advice. They have knowledge of a wide range of jobs and the different routes to get started or progress in them. They can coach you to explore what you want from your career and provide information and advice to help you decide the next step that is right for you.

David Morgan, Chief Executive of the Career Development Institute says: “That’s the key for this next step – making sure it is right for you. Your career will be as individual as you are, depending on what you want from your working life, how you like to learn, the environment that will bring the best out of you and what your situation is. These factors also change over time as you learn and grow and as your personal circumstances change.”

“That’s why it’s so helpful to access independent, informed advice from a qualified careers professional, particularly at critical moments such as today when your next step may be unclear.”

Regardless of the grades students receive today, they can still have successful careers by taking the time to think about what they want from the world of work and looking for the opportunities to get there. So don’t panic, take the time to explore your options, and ask your Careers Adviser for help.

You can also get support from Careers Wales which is providing extra

support in schools and at