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  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    what's your job, and do you love it?

    i'm a high school senior, and feeling the pressures of having to choose a major, career, life path. i'm NOT in any way settling on anything, however, i love so much and am interested in so much that it's hard to choose.

    so i'd like to know: what do you do? how did you get started, and do you love it?

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  3. #2
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    My advice to you is to not try to choose a career title just yet. Instead, look over the things you like to do, have a skill at, a passion for, a curiousity about. Make a list if so inclined! See how they connect or network. Continue to allow the universe to reveal to you itself and yourself.

    But don't worry about settling on a career or life path quite yet. You're young, and you don't know everything about what's out there in the world yet. There are potential career paths unknown until 10 years from now. Who knew in 1975 when I was a HS senior there would be a thriving global economy based completely in cyberspace within 30 years??? Heck, calculators back then were heavy stuff.

    Never if at all possible refuse an opportunity for education or to learn a new skill.

    Also, serendipity affects more lives than it is given credit for. I got a terrific job 12 years ago because I befriended a girl at a party who asked me to send her my resume. For some odd reason I followed up and found a whole new path in video game development. I am now a teacher because a few years ago I met a friend when I was out on a power-walk in my neighborhood, and complained to her that I needed a part-time job that paid a decent wage, and she suggested I try substitute teaching. I am just now finishing up my M.Ed. plus secondary credential with my own classroom, and I am soooo happy as a teacher. AND I teach a subject in which I have no academic background! (Learned it on the job as a substitute teacher, and with a little study I passed the state exam!)

  4. #3
    Senior Member
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    i think people put way too much pressure on high school students to know what they want to do with their lives.

    my suggestion is to go to college, and take as many classes as you can on anything you think might interest you. most college students change majors at least once, and some colleges will let you be "undeclared" or "exploratory" for your first two years.

    i don't think going straight to a 4-year college is always the best option. i wish i had gone to college right out of high school instead of screwing around for several years, but going to a community college and transferring to a 4-year college was the best choice for me. it's cheaper, so you can take classes that look cool just to see if you're interested in them. the teachers are there to teach, whereas at most universities their first job is research and teaching is an inconvenient thing they have to do.

    okay, so that didn't have anything to do with my job or career... right now i work part time for the Department of Public Health Sciences at my school. my job isn't glamorous, but it's great because i found out that i want to work in public health and i am getting experience and meeting people in the field.

    i guess the point of this all is that you don't need to make any decisions now! if you want to go to college, study something that looks interesting to you. most people don't end up working in the exact field they studied, and having a college degree in the general area you're interested in (science, humanities, etc) is more important than having a degree in a specific discipline.

  5. #4
    Senior Member
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    Jul 2004
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    brooklyn
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    cinch,

    i changed majors several times in college and finally settled on something because i wanted out of university in 4 years. i wish i had given myself more time to think it over...

  6. #5
    Senior Member
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    Nov 2004
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    I think maybe the thing to do at this point in your life is to concentrate less on figuring out a specific career path than on identifying your strengths and interests and things like that. That will help you evaluate opportunities as they present themselves.

    So think about what motivates you. Is it the desire for success? Being around other people? Fixing problems and solving puzzles? (That's a big one for me.) Helping people? Being creative? If you figure out what makes you want to get out of bed in the morning, you'll be able to figure out whether that's an important part of a career or major that interests you.

    I probably shouldn't say this, since I teach a lot of slacker college students, but you should remember that college is not just about the academics. It's also an opportunity to try out adulthood in a safe setting, and it's a chance to encounter and try new things. I've known more people whose extracurricular activities have led them to careers than people who have obvious careers in their majors.

    And finally, if you can at all swing it, do a junior year abroad. You'll probably never have another opportunity to travel for that long, and I promise you that you'll be glad you did it.

    Anyway, how I found my career. When I graduated from college, I didn't know what I wanted to do, so I got a job at a bookstore. I got really bored putting books on shelves, so I sought out opportunities to write reviews for the store newsletter, which was more fun. When I couldn't take working at the bookstore anymore, I realized that all of those newsletter reviews were clips that I could send to publishers to convince them to hire me as a marketing peon. So I got hired by an academic publisher to do things like write back cover copy and advertisements. After a year and a half of doing that, I realized that the best part of the job was actually reading the books, and that rather than writing back cover copy, I would like to write academic books. So I applied to grad school in history, and here I am. I'm trying to finish next year. Then, if the employment gods are on my side, I hope to get a job as a college professor.

    I'm really, really glad that I didn't go straight to grad school.

  7. #6
    Senior Member
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    I chose my college major (linguistics) because I took the intro class on a whim first semester and had FUN on the final exam. I do regret not getting a minor in chemistry, though. Then I went to art school to be a web designer.

    Now I'm a teacher, which I also fell into - I wanted to volunteer at a Mandarin immersion program since there aren't many white people my age who speak Chinese and their students are from all backgrounds. Then they hired me as an aide instead, and the teachers I worked with encouraged me to get my credential; then I happened to get into a middle school program so I could graduate faster and now I'm teaching science!

    Serendipity happens. Don't worry so much, people don't spend their whole life in a single career anymore. Just hold on to your passion (and skills) for learning because you'll need that more than anything else.

    (Teaching is great for people with multiple passions, though, especially if you do elementary where you have to teach all kinds of stuff. The more broad background you have the more resources you have to draw on when coming up for something that will draw in your students.)

    p.s. mrs_stroozi: I assume you're not teaching math, that test is a nightmare! I know my school would love if I had that credential too...

  8. #7
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by kindarana
    p.s. mrs_stroozi: I assume you're not teaching math, that test is a nightmare! I know my school would love if I had that credential too...
    Naw, I'm teaching earth science and am 2/3 the way through the history/social studies state exams, so hopefully by Spring I'll be certified for that area, too.

  9. #8
    Junior Member
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    Dec 2006
    Location
    Carson, CA
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    thanks!

    thanks everyone for your responses! it's making me feel a lot better, and i'm so excited that so many of you have switched up careers, i feel like i can try a little of everything. thanks again!

  10. #9
    Senior Member
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    madison, wi
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    Oh yeah, I was a switcher-upper... :)

    I started out with an undeclared major at a 4-year university, which, having no direction, was an expensive undertaking. However, I met good friends, and one of which who introduced me to my now-husband. College was fun, but not terribly good for trying to figure out what I wanted to do.

    I later realized I'm a very visual person, so I decided to get into photography. Since my university really didn't have a program for that, I started the process of transferring to my local technical college, which was the best educational decision I've ever made. The classes were smaller, the teachers actually cared, and the curriculum was just on the upswing to mainstreaming digital technology. It was a great time and place to be there, and I don't regret any money spent on my education.

    Now, I'm a freelance photographer, and I love it. But I wouldn't be here if it weren't for the fact that I'm a control freak and wouldn't rest until I found a way to make things work once I "figured it out".

    I wouldn't worry about what you want to be when you grow up, though. I still struggle with that idea to this day, and I'm 28 years old. Things will continue to change through your life. They always do. For instance, I'm about to become a mom, and haven't figured out if I want to stay home or push on with my career, or do something completely different! Ha!

  11. #10
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    austin (area) texas
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    Re: what's your job, and do you love it?

    Quote Originally Posted by cinch
    i'm a high school senior, and feeling the pressures of having to choose a major, career, life path. i'm NOT in any way settling on anything, however, i love so much and am interested in so much that it's hard to choose.

    so i'd like to know: what do you do? how did you get started, and do you love it?
    You know what's funny? I was just like you. And I still am. I'm 33 and my whole working life I've wanted to try everything. You only get one life right? I don't see the point in investing all of yourself into a career, unless it makes you loads of money and provides a career ladder that will land you in a good place down the road.

    I'm more of a take-it-day-to-day person. I have worked three different State jobs and my favorite was Licensure Investigator at the Medical Board. Right now I stay home with my girls and run my own business.

    My philosophy is to love whatever you do. You don't always get a choice and sometimes the job you end up in doesn't meet up to your expectations. Besides that, it takes time, once you start working to actually get to the point where you are comfortable. Not much different than a relationship. So always give your 100% and think about the good things you can take away from any job no matter what it is.

    Did that sound a little bit cheesy?


 
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