Interview with Bjarne Ulrich Lauridsen

Organisation responsible for the interview: SOSU Østjylland

Country: Denmark

Occupation: Educational and vocational guidance counsellor

Small Bio/CV: Bjarne is a mechanic by trade, has worked for the Danish National Police (car inspection), has been a foreman, a teacher at a vocational school and subsequently the last 20 years he has been an educational and vocational counsellor at a VET school.

Date of the interview: 27.04.2023

Short summary of the interview

Young people generally already have an idea of what they want to do. There are definitely gender based trends when it comes to our programs. Boys chose the “classic” programs such as carpentry, mechanic and electrician. The girls chose programs related to cooking or style. Young people’s parents and social circle have a very big impact on educational choice. It’s more prestigious to choose higher education than vocational education.

Both girls and boys have prejudice towards our programs. The girls have prejudices that it is difficult for them to get an apprenticeship in a male-dominated industry or that they are not physical strength necessary. The boys often believe that it’s only a certain type of boys who chose programs within style, e.g. hairdresser.

Statements of utmost importance – top statements/ information

Main influences on educational choices: The easy answer… the parents. Not many young people choose vocational education and training if both parents have upper secondary education. Moreover, their social circle has an unquestionable influence on educational choices! “Equal children play best”.