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The posting regarding Career Advice

"Well, Potter, this meeting is to talk over any career ideas you might have, and to help you decide which subjects you should continue into the sixth and seventh years. Have you had any thoughts about what you would like to do after you leave Hogwarts?"
— Harry's appointment with McGonagall[src]

Careers Advice was a special meeting held for Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry students in their fifth year of education.[1]

They were for the students to receive advice from their Heads of House to help them gain an idea of what subjects they would need to achieve high grades in for their O.W.L. exams, in order to continue the subject at N.E.W.T. level and graduate with the grades needed to pursue that career.[2]

In the Easter holidays, students were told of the meeting and information booklets promoting certain careers were given to them. The short meeting was held in the professor's office at the start of the summer term, and each student was given a time which usually cut into a certain class hour.[3]

Harry Potter's session

"Potter, I will assist you to become an Auror if it is the last thing I do! If I have to coach you nightly, I will make sure you achieve the required results!"
— Minerva McGonagall's ending remark on Harry Potter's Career Advice session[src]

During Harry Potter's career advice session with Professor McGonagall, which took place at half-past two during his Divination class, he was five minutes late. This was due to him forgetting and then he was rudely interrupted by the then-headmistress, Dolores Umbridge. Umbridge kept making annoying scratching sounds with her note-writing, as well as making remarks against Harry's ambition of being an Auror. She essentially suggested it would not be possible due to Harry's "criminal record" (which had been cleared) and poor marks in Defence Against the Dark Arts, specifically her classes (which was dismissed by McGonagall).[1]

Professor McGonagall was at first impartial with Harry's choice of career, even suggesting he look for another career path as his current marks require a little extra effort to make it through the cut. But with Umbridge's constant interruptions and insults, the meeting ended up with Professor McGonagall supporting Harry, and having a screaming argument with Umbridge.[1]

Ultimately, Professor McGonagall's insistence of Harry's success was proven correct. Harry became an Auror shortly after the Second Wizarding War. This was due to Minister for Magic Kingsley Shacklebolt offering any surviving participants of the Battle of Hogwarts to enter Auror training without the N.E.W.T. prerequisites, in order to replenish their lost soldiers. Harry took on this offer in lieu of returning to Hogwarts to achieve the academic requirements.[4] However, Harry did achieve the required O.W.L. marks to enter the N.E.W.T.-level classes needed for Auror training. He achieved seven O.W.L.s: one 'Outstanding'[5], five 'Exceeds Expectations'[5], and one 'Acceptable'.[5]


Notes and references

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 29 (Careers Advice)
  2. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 12 (Professor Umbridge) - "O.W.L.s are really important, affect the jobs you can apply for and everything. We get career advice too, later this year, Bill told me. So you can choose what N.E.W.T.s you want to do next year."
  3. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Chapter 29 (Careers Advice) - "All fifth years will be required to attend a short meeting with their Head of House during the first week of the Summer term, in which they will be given the opportunity to discuss their future careers. Times of individual appointments are listed below."
  4. J.K. Rowling Official Site Wizard of the Month Archive
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Chapter 5 (An Excess of Phlegm)