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I"m kinda stuck in between 3 different careers. And I"m not sure which one best suits me. I would like some advise on how to choose a career

I'm asking because, this is my junior year in high school and I would like to have one career in mind so I could start looking into colleges that offer that career. #training #hands-on-experience #observational-research

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Subject: Career question for you

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Robert’s Answer

If I were in your position I would try to find people who are currently in the career you are interested in and ask about shadowing them at work. For example, if I were debating between being a software engineer, dentist and police officer I would find someone in each career and request a "ride along" for a week.


This will give you a chance to see the career in action and, more importantly, may help you know which you are really looking forward to the most (which can be a good indicator of your real feelings).


Do the jobs you are considering require truly specialized education or professional certification (e.g., plumber, CPA, lawyer, doctor, etc)? Are they similar enough that you could begin with a general education and defer specialization until you are further into your education?

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Rimma’s Answer

I would recommend summer or 3-4 months (or longer if you have time) internship programs that will allow you to understand the role and decide if this is something you want to do all your life or at least for the upcoming 10 years. Many companies provide those opportunities and focus on:
- if the responsibilities are really interesting,
- are the team i am working with having a right mindset,
- if company cares of the culture.
Company's culture is important as much as the role itself. Be curious, explore and you will find the right job for sure.
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Charles M’s Answer

Here are a few thoughts.


Transferable skills Whatever career you choose, make sure you have the basic skills that will help you succeed in all careers.




  • Written and verbal communication skills,




  • the skill of time management and project management, in other words, getting things done when you say you are going to get them done,




  • The skill to be self-motivated and to overcome obstacles in your emotions that get in the way of getting things done.




  • The skills to learn what you need to learn quickly at the same time as everything else.




  • The skill to manage stress and to relax at the right times to help you sustain long periods of hard work.




Discover what you are good at doing, what your special talents are. In his book, Goals, How to Get Everything You Want - Faster Than You Ever Thought Possible, Brian Tracy tells how to find your special talents. On pages 123 and 124 he lists 8 ways to discover what your special talent is.




  1. You love to do it




  2. You do it well




  3. This talent has been responsible for most of your success and happiness in life up till now. (something you have enjoyed doing from an early age)




  4. It is easy for you to learn and easy for you to do.




  5. It holds your attention (naturally you talk about it, you think about it, you learn about it).




  6. You love to learn about it and desire to excel in this area.




  7. When you do it, times stands still for you. You can go for long hours without eating or sleeping because you are so involved in it.




  8. you really admire and respect those who are good at what you are most suited to do. You want to emulate them.




My thought is, that if you are a junior in high school, you have not experienced enough of life to really have enough data for each of those points. Your parents can help you see things you may not see. But be willing to suspend your decisions as you gather data over the next few years. I recommend getting Brian Tracy's book and doing all of it right now, while you still have time to do it right the first time and not have to go back and undo decisions that were not right.


Speaking of doing it right the first time, Dave Ramsey, financial guru, recommends that you do not go into debt to get your college education. (He also says "don't go into debt period. cash is king") If your choice is one school where you have to get a loan and a different school where you can pay as you go, pay as you go. That way, if you discover you are in the wrong major, or if your major has a slump in hiring the year you graduate, you won't have a millstone of debt hanging around your neck when you graduate and are forced to get a job just to pay off the loan, which may not be the job you want.


Final thought, Jobs have a life cycle. Some jobs are going extinct, like technicians that use chemicals to develop film. Digital cameras have greatly reduced the need for those. Other jobs are steady state like healthcare and teaching, and other jobs are just emerging. Big data and being a data scientist is one of those jobs.
The Occupational Outlook Handbook can help you find career information on duties, education and training, pay, and future outlook for hundreds of occupations.
Choose a career that is emerging, and plan to choose another career in a few years when your first career starts to become extinct. or if you choose one that is steady state, like healthcare, plan on getting additional education every year to stay current.

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M’s Answer

Hi Chelsea! This can be tricky! Do research on all three, where you can see yourself in all three career paths. Learn about the salary and job descriptions, then ask yourself questions about each of them, Is there one that brings you more joy? One that you feel more passionate towards? Is there one that comes more easily to you than the others? If you have one in mind then there's your answer, if not and you feel like all three are at the same level, what I did was I applied to schools with different majors and wherever I ended up going is what I chose to do. But, also, once you get into the school, it's also possible to change your major so remember to not stress too much over this. Wishing you the best of luck!
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Ken’s Answer

Hi! One thing that might help is to talk to your guidance counselor about taking interest and aptitude tests to see where your career areas might best be and arrange to visit and talk to graduates of your school who are working in those areas. Also, you could inquire about internship, volunteer, shadowing, and coop programs in those areas. Another suggestion would be to talk to your high school teachers most related to your areas of interest to see how they might see you fitting into those career areas, and see if they could introduce you to people in those career areas whom you could meet and chat.

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