Round #3: Choosing a career
Date: March 2, 2002 10:20 AM
That leads is to the next question... how do you pick a career with all the complex choices that there are today?
Date: March 5, 2002 12:42 AM
Well, I think the number 1 thing is to do something that you enjoy. I hear stories all the time about students who switch courses because they realize that they don't like it anymore after they have started. For me, I have to get a feel for what I like, and how much I like that career path. I think that I've changed my goal about 12 times.
The economy and money are other very big factors. If I know that there will be no jobs in a specific area, then why would I want to risk not getting a job? As well, money plays a huge part in all of this. Some jobs are not worth the money that they pay, other jobs that I love may be worth the low amount of pay.
Sometimes I'm afraid that if I choose one job I'll always have to work in that field. This situation is changing, and it seems that more people are changing their careers at any time. This means that when I do decide what I want to do, I can still be able to do it!
Even though I have been trained in Business and Human Resource Management it seems that I don't have to do either of those jobs. I think that a lot of post-secondary skills are transferable to other jobs and careers.
Date: March 5, 2002 12:58 AM
How do you pick a career with all the complex choices that there are?
In all essence, you don't. I think that successful graduates in the future will need to be highly adaptable and have the ability to deal with a rapidly changing employment market. That said, with the exception of professional programs (Medicine, Dentistry, Law, etc.), or Academia, my perspective suggests that 'careers' as we used to know them no longer exist.
As a student, I continue to hear from more wiser, experienced people (read: older) that you should expect to change careers. While the repetition has finally sunk in, the fear regarding a varied work environment certainly isn't comfortable -- especially in a contracting economy. This situation is exacerbated when we hear, see, and learn about the increasing educational requirements to find meaningful work. It seems pretty bleak, doesn't it?
To contrast, the same pundits that convince us students to be adaptable and highly educated, also point to the age demographics of our population -- namely to suggest that in five to 10 years, a vast majority of the workforce (baby-boomers) will be retiring, and that there will be a shortage of quality workers to fill these positions. Which argument wins out? In my mind, we haven't seen the job market open up as suggested by a future 'retirement en masse', and so as a student, I prepare to be adaptable. Without a dedicated career, because, once again, they don't exist.
Date: March 3, 2002 9:14 AM
Picking a career is probably one of the most important choices that one will make in a lifetime. However, I believe that even in a society where the opportunities are more complex, a person should always do what he or she has the desire to do.
Although there might be a terrific salary, if you do not like what you're doing, you are going to be miserable. I have always considered going into Law, and I hope to write the LSAT next year. I understand that the legal field, like many others, is undergoing constant change. However, it is what I am interested in, and despite all the dire predictions, I still want to do it.
Having said that, it is impossible to ignore economic realities. For example, some days I tell myself that I would rather play trombone for a living, but then I am reminded that musicians (the vast majority, anyway) are usually living hand-to-mouth. Law is my interest, and I also realize that I have a better chance of making a living in that field than in music.
In conclusion, do what you are interested in doing, and then it won't seem like work at all. But, one should also make sure that the job can at least provide a decent standard of living.
Have a good day, folks.
Date: March 8, 2002 5:34 PM
Choosing a career is becoming more and more difficult. There are now so many options that the problem has been finding out exactly what these options are. So many students still only consider the "successful careers" (i.e. Medicine, Dentistry and Law). I remember going to a session in first year university where all first year science students were asked to raise their hands if their goal was to become a doctor- the hands of over half the students present went up.
So how do I go about picking a career with so many choices available to me?
I've found that every experience that I've had up to this point has really shown me what I would like to do and what I would definitely like to avoid career-wise. I worked as a lifeguard that involved a lot of PR which I loved and would definitely like to continue doing. Running a university orientation program taught me that I love organization and leadership. Finally, my current position as vice-president of external affairs for the AMS (UBC's student society) has made me realize how much I love playing a managerial role.
I've found that my jobs have taught me so much more then any university course could teach me.
Date: March 25, 2002 3:22 PM
The factors that influence picking a career include the thought of waking up every morning and doing what I want. I want something to continuously challenge me and provide growth opportunities.
Does my educational training mean anything? I want to work in the Criminal Justice field, but what does that mean? I'm not sure where the field ends. I'm still gauging the scope.