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i just finished high school and i have no idea what do??

I love books that talk about motivation
I love music
I love writing
I like reality tv
I'm very interested in coding, high tech, and also very interested in machine learning, food data structures, and software engineering food

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From: You
To: Friend
Subject: Career question for you


12 answers

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Wendy’s Answer


It sounds like we should be friends. ;) But, seriously, guess what? You made it through High School, and in my opinion, that's the hardest part!

High School is where you really figure out who you are at your core and what you like (which you mentioned), simply put. Do you know how many people live on this earth that don't have the answer to either of those things? You're ahead of the game!

Here's the secret: there's no one "true" answer. And that's what's so great about it, too! Look at all the things you mentioned you like: motivational books, music, writing, tv, technology, food. You could end up doing all those things, if you wanted! You don't have to have "one job" or "a job", you could do multiple things. Like music and writing? Write songs! Do you know what they pay the person who *writes* the hit songs?! Like coding and machine learning? Take a class, see how much you really like it! Then, you'll be around people who can introduce you to new opportunities, and just keep exploring from there. Get down a path and realize you don't love it, want to change direction? Okay then, change direction - It really is that simple.

Explore things you can "do" that have any (or all!) of those interests you mentioned, at the very core. You will never be disappointed so long as you follow what makes your heart beat. It's okay to start something and realize you don't like it. It's okay to start over. If it brings you joy, it was always worth it.

The world is literally full of possibilities and you have the power to create opportunities for yourself, all you have to do is be open to it.

Pick one thing, start there, and always be curious. Curiosity leads to knowledge, and knowledge is power.

Wishing you the best & hope this helps!

Highly appreciated malebo R.
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Rakan’s Answer

Hello dear,
First of all its good that you know what do you like, now you need to sit and do a small research about this.
You can start by knowing what do you want the most in life? Whats your objective that you dream to reach/do? Also study the market needs in the country you're living in/you want to live in? If the job will match the society and community needs in the place you live? Or you have to travel to serve your goal in better ways? You have to know if the job will make you safe regarding the income you’ll get? How much it will affect you ? If it will be risky or promising? After that maybe you’ll end up choosing something you dont like most but its 2nd or 3rd priority for you, because the 1st priority interest that you dream to work in will maybe not serve you in terms of income-political issues... for any reasons, so you’ll set your priority differently here, and maybe your 1st priority will be a part time job or maybe a hobby.
After that you have to rake in consideration when you choose something, to make sure that you meet several employees who works in same field and discuss with them all details you need to know, see the positions and roles you can work in, sometimes its different from an organization to another.
After that you can start working and gaining experience, life will make you learn and you’ll discover the market more and more, it will give you an indicator either to keep developing your self in same field or maybe will show you that you have to change. The more you build your decision strongly and wisely, the easier it will be.
Good luck :)
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Viviana’s Answer

Hello Malebo,

I would ´ve liked someone to tell me , after graduating high school , to just take it easy , and enjoy every step of the way. Sometimes we think or society has dictated that we have to go to college right away , but that is not necessarily everyone´s path. There are a lot of options now , as to what to do after graduating and if life allows it you can take one of those options. For example , travel , volunteering , search for a course in writing or coding and of course if one of your goals is going to college, go to college. I think college is a great tool for life , not only because of the knowledge that you acquire but also the networking . Take all of your options and just take it easy and enjoy every step of the way , no rush .
Thank you so much that was really insightful malebo R.
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Pro’s Answer

With all those interests, you might want to think about an Interdisciplinary, General Studies, or Liberal Studies major. You can include courses in all different areas in those.
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Rebecca’s Answer

Firstly, congratulations on your graduation! You are still so young. Would you consider to continue your study in tertiary education?
I have observed you have a wide ranges of interest especially computer. Computer Science courses in Universities can offer a good learning opportunity and experience on coding, machine learning (AI), data structures, etc. You can acquire more knowledge and wider explore on these aspects. At the same time, it can offer an awesome experience to collaborate with other youngsters at the same age and enjoy the learning atmosphere of the university.
Hope this helps! Good Luck!
Thank you and I yes I have been considering higher education malebo R.
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Shelley’s Answer

Congratulations on your recent graduation! This is an exciting next chapter for you! If you plan to go to College you can take some time to look at all sorts of courses in the computer science/engineering fields to see if those perk your interest. Right now having a background in coding can really take you far. Once you learn some skill in the Tech space you can apply for internships and summer programs to enhance those skills. I know that there are a lot of online platforms to learn some of these skills for free! Google and check them out!
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Atul’s Answer

Based on what you have stated, you may want to consider a major in English to become a teacher, technical writer or work in marketing communications.

If you enjoy the high-tech industry and software, go for a Computer Science degree.
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Thomas’s Answer

"Wondering what to do after high school? Many seniors transition straight from the halls of high school to the a college campus, this is one of many paths you can take — so don’t grab your shower caddy and head for the dorms just yet. There's no law that says you have to go to college three months after you graduate from high school.

Considering a non-traditional post-graduation path can give you a better sense of purpose for whatever you decide you want to do in life. You can also defer most college acceptances for a year, so you won't have to start from scratch when you return. If you're not convinced though, or have no idea what you'd do with a whole year off, consider some of these alternate post-graduation paths.

Discover 9 things to do after high school that have nothing to do with college.

1. Travel Abroad
Graduation means freedom from classwork, exams, teachers, and extracurricular activities. It can be the opportune time in your life to see the world you have spent so much time learning about in textbooks, and put those foreign languages to use. Take it from Bailey Theado, who deferred her enrollment to university for a well-organized trip of travel and volunteer work.

Bailey's adventure took her across Nepal, India, Indonesia, Malaysia, Laos and Thailand, and then to Denmark and France. This included a photojournalism internship, a project on the Akha hill tribe, and volunteering in Tibet.

Bailey said she wanted to have a year to find out exactly what she was interested in, and what she liked in order to make sure her four years in college would be worth the tuition. “I think the year after high school is the sweet spot to find out what you're really passionate about," she said. Be aware that a decision like this, if done right, isn’t spontaneous. Bailey saved up $7,000 for her trip from two years of working as an archivist, digitizing family albums, and as a part-time nanny in her neighborhood. It also took careful planning, Googling, and scheduling before takeoff.

2. Do Charity Work
While you may have put in some hours after school to volunteer, taking time after high school to really dedicate yourself to a cause is something you should carefully contemplate. Research organizations that are doing important work in the areas you care most about. Spending a significant amount of time fighting for that cause, and being surrounded by professionals in the field can help give you more direction as you think about your future. Interested in helping at-risk youth? Hoping to help more women get access to free healthcare? Want to see what you can do to protect the environment at a local level? With the elections coming up, this may be the time for you to try on your political hat and see if that is an avenue worth exploring. Get involved in your community and see where it takes you.

3. Save Money
College is expensive. Beyond the day-to-day living costs, students find themselves paying off debt for years. Instead of heading straight to school, consider a year of work to save up for this pricey academic adventure. We’re not saying to set your eyes on your dream job, but starting off small will pay off in the near future when you do set out for school.

Hit up your favorite local shops and retail stores to see if they're hiring or ask around to see if people in your neighborhood need a long-term babysitter or tutor. These kinds of jobs can lead to important personal connections in the future, or a more involved, paid project. You can also search for paid internships that offer openings for students who have deferred college for a year. While it may not be glamorous, this experience could be an important lesson in managing your finances. When you're done, you’ll be better prepared for college, and not only because you'll have money in your pocket, but because you'll be armed with the basic principles of financial responsibility.

4. Concentrate on Your Passion
Are you a talented painter, but school always had you reaching for pens over paint brushes? Always had an eye for photography but never the opportunity to use it? Instead of rushing to college, which will have you equally as bound to your textbooks, consider allowing yourself time for a skill you really want to cultivate.

The summer before starting her BFA program at Elon University, Blaine Morris was contacted about an internship on the writing team of the U.S. version of the poplar U.K. teen drama Skins. After spending time in their writers’ room, she was asked to become a permanent teen consultant. The creator eventually pulled Blaine aside to tell her the part she had given so much feedback about, lesbian cheerleader Tea, was written for her. “I was utterly dumbfounded; this was not part of the life plan. This opportunity created an incredibly tough decision for me to make — start school at a top rated BFA program and follow my life long dream of being on Broadway, or play a character that I loved and helped create, on a TV show with no clear outcome.”

Blaine had spent her entire high school career focused on following the traditional path toward college, but says, "I knew that if I left the opportunity behind, it would be one of my biggest regrets.” Two weeks after moving into Elon, Blaine packed her bags and flew to Toronto to film Skins. She gave up going straight to college for an experience and opportunity she couldn’t refuse, and one she had started to create for herself before graduating. Plus, when her experience on Skins wrapped, she was still able to go to college, and she's now pursuing producing, writing, and directing classes at Columbia University in New York.

5. Go After a Fellowship
If you are confident you have a great idea, see if there are other people out there who agree. While it's still smart to keep your sights set on college, seek out fellowships that may offer an alternative route. These are competitive, but that’s how you know if someone is willing to invest in you and your idea. The time after graduation may be the moment to take off with your vision — and with the support of a fellowship, you will have the financial backup, and often the mentorship, necessary to succeed.

“The fellowship gave me the financial and social capital to develop myself and my ideas in a setting like Silicon Valley and New York City, where optimists are celebrated,” says John Marbach, a 2011 Thiel Fellowship recipient. “I feel that taking time to vigorously pursue my interests outside of school was one of the best decisions I ever made. I learned a lot about the dedication and exceptional skill required to build amazing software products, but I learned even more about myself, my relationships, and the way I want to impact the world.”

6. Become an Online Entrepreneur
Getting a fellowship isn't the only path to entrepreneurial success. You can bootstrap your own business, and there are limitless online business opportunities. Have a knack for fashion and marketing? Consider starting an online store with Shopify, or creating an eBay empire.

Are you artistic or crafty? You can make your own wares and sell them on Etsy. Are you an amazing writer with a lot of opinions? You could start a blog and monetize it with ads. Or, you could start a YouTube channel to showcase any passion you have — who says you can't be the next big YouTube star?

7. Intern with Projects Abroad
Projects Abroad is an offshoot of the Peace Corps. The Peace Corps isn't an option for high school graduates, given that their programs require a bachelor's degree. With Projects Abroad, however, anyone age 16 or over can join.

Projects Abroad offers short-term internships in countries around the world. You'll be able to get hands-on experience in fields including business, international development, journalism, law, human rights, medicine, healthcare, microfinance, social work, veterinary medicine and animal care. By participating in an internship like this, you might learn more about the college and career path you eventually want to take.

8. Join the Military
Joining the military is another option for what to do after high school. You'll gain valuable experience during your years in service and enter the work force with plenty of real world accomplishments to add to your resume. Joining the military, of course, is a major commitment: you'll serve a minimum of five to eight years, no matter which branch you choose. If military service is something you're interested in, take the time to research each of the branches thoroughly and find out which is right for you. As an added bonus, if you do decide you want to eventually go the college route, the military offers sizable scholarships and tuition assistance.

9. Learn a Trade
College isn't the only place to further your education. Trade and vocational schools offer a unique opportunity to learn a valuable trade — for a fraction of the price in significantly less time. At the end of your program, you'll earn a certificate of completion and you'll be ready to get a career in your chosen field. This can be a substitute for college, or it can also be a way to get a better paying job while attending college after trade school. There are dozens of fields of study in fields including: graphic design, bridal consulting, cosmetology, surgical technology, personal training, massage therapy, dental hygiene, video game design and much more."

I highly appreciate all the information im getting I'll make sure to make some goals to follow malebo R.
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Archuleta’s Answer


A career in machine learning can provide you with the resources and jobs to do the things you love! Data structures and software engineering in food do use machine learning to figure our what people like. Try out some freeware like Elasticsearch to see if you enjoy it. Recruiters and universities will be interested in the tools you have used even if it is for your enjoyment or volunteering. Pursuing an internship is the best way to get paid to learn in this field.

Archuleta recommends the following next steps:

Reseach Elasticsearch and other machine learning tools.
Look for machine learning internships at international and local companies.
Thank you so much malebo R.
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Peregrin’s Answer


First and foremost, you need to decide if you want to head straight to college or is taking skip year(s) an option for you?

It is great that you know what you love/like as you have listed it above, what I always recommend is thinking about how they might combine. A great brainstorming technique would be to gather some of your friends who know you best, and you all write down any career idea that comes to mind for 5 minutes, then discuss them, asking your friends for their view and why they think that may help spark ideas of your own or provide an alternative perspective that may create new insights.

If you have the opportunity and interest in skip years, consider testing out several different options to see which resonate and which don't. If you want to go straight to college, then rest easy most freshman only have an idea of what they think they want to do... test it out with different classes as you start and talk to the professors in each to get some other sense of it.
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Bethany’s Answer

When I graduated from high school, I did not know what I wanted to either and went to college right away. It turns out, I was not ready. If you are unsure about going to college right away, you probably should not. And I wish somebody would have told me that.
Take time away to find out what you really want to do. If you have the opportunity to do so, try job shadowing to find something you would enjoy to do as a career.
Another important factor is to save money if you do ever plan to go to college. This will give you a head start to eventually go to school if you wish.
Just from past experience, if you need to take a gap year, take that gap year, it will benefit you. Just because you see everyone going to college right away does not mean you have to. Not everybody is the same, and it is important to do whatever is best for you.
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Hury’s Answer

Hello Malebo,

Congrats on your graduation from high school! I would recommend that you look into those topics that you like the most! maybe doing some internships will help you pivot your career path to something you really love to do! I would continue with the education path of a bachelors maybe around IT and as you take your classes, believe there would be some that you will like the most and from there the rest is history!

Good Luck to you!
Thank you so much malebo R.