Really it depends. Most of it is just pure luck. Sure. You can tell them the same old story I've heard from just about everyone on the internet.
"Go into the Modding Community. Get into open source games. Do a map. Do a mod. Create a small game. Create a team or join a team and try to contribute."
Look at those and you'll see a common misconception. Creating games has little to nothing to do with most of the above save for the last two. Getting into the modding community is nice and all, but that kind of experience can lead to nothing more than an ego boost. Getting into open source game projects or small game development kits will teach them the basics, but nothing more. Doing maps is only viable if the person is into wanting to create maps and do level design only. Doing a mod in retrospect depends on the scale of the mod, but if it is just a normal mod and not something that truly creates a new game from the ground up, then it is just a dive into the internal workings of a particular game and not the elements that made the game come to be.
Creating a game though is where it really begins. Even more so, to do so in a team. Doing either of these takes commitment. Telling kids, even college students, that they have to start a game project from initial idea to an actual finished product is something like Mt Everest for most people. In most programming classes (even game design and graphics programming classes) I've done, students who create a game do so with that deadline in mind and then finish the game. After the deadline for the project is up, they toss the game aside and move on, not completing their work.
Now I've got an interesting take on game development so far. I started off as a kid wanting to create games, figured that the one thing I really needed is a degree in CS. The thing is I started off already knowing what I wanted to do. I wanted to program. Kids and adults who want to create games start off by saying they want to create games, but never realize that there are many elements that go into what creates a game. Concept artists, 3D modelers, animators, level designers, game designers, game programmers, UI artists, quest design, AI programming, graphic programming, physics programming, sound design, and countless other roles are what make up a game in the industry. Indie development means you will find that people will have multiple roles, but ultimately a person has to choose their path and stick with it.
At my university I got immensely lucky and found that my school actually had a dedicated game development degree. I didn't go for it and decided to stuck with my CS degree, but I soon caught wind of a game project funded by the NSF that was in first steps of development at my uni. Several chance encounters later and now I'm in the forefront of what it really means to create a game from beginning to end. I've dabbled heavily in game concept to programming. I've got hands on experience talking to people who are truly motivated into creating the game we have envisioned. What really amazes me is how many times I have interviewed people who are interested in joining our project as a programmer only to find that they immediately come to the realization that it just isn't for them. Over the course of the summer we started with a strong team of almost 20 people. Most came by every now and then, worked a little and then dropped off the face of our known universe. By the end we only had 8 people. The ones who kept through are the ones who are now veterans in our field. We got people who worked with us go on to Activision and Dreamworks. In the previous years we produced a game and several of the guys moved on to create their own game development company (though now it seems they have moved on to teaching game development instead around the world). The guys who still work on it are dedicated to it and will likely land jobs with the work we have done.
So in essence what you really need to do is ask them a series of very serious questions:
1) Do you REALLY want to work on games? Not because you like to have fun with them, but as a job to create the stuff over countless hours of effort?
2) What do you want to do? Programming? Sound? Design (mechanics/story)? Level creation? Art? This is important. Programming is not all there is to it.
3) Are you motivated to start doing anything you can right now?
4) Have you even begun trying to go on that path? If not will you start right now?
With those questions in mind you then have to inform them whether or not they should do it or not. If they are willing then all you can really tell them is to go where they are able to. Universities are not bad but getting a more general degree will give them time to realize what they REALLY want to do with their life. Game colleges like FullSail are great, but they are more focused and from my understanding is only really useful for those who are 100% committed to doing games.
To end this long post, so far for me in the end it really is luck. I always wanted to program for games, but I never truly knew the pains of creating a complete game from scratch with 8+ other guys would be and how long of a commitment you need in order to get anything accomplished. It may end up much harder for others than it was for me that's for damn sure.