First things first - that's ok! Most people do not know what they want to do the rest of their lives and it can be stressful to think about. I felt the same way a couple of years ago right before I graduated high school. My suggestion is to go to a community college to obtain your basics. This will help you have time to try some different jobs in completely different fields. Also, by going to a community college you will be saving money and giving yourself more time to decide on a career/job while making progress on your degree. Don't let people put pressure on you that you have to decide now on the rest of your work life. I had a teacher in high school tell me that I would be a failure if I did not know what degree/career I wanted by the time I graduated high school. Well, I did not by graduation but decided a year later on what I wanted to do and absolutely love it (operations)
I decided to go into Business Operations since operations touches almost every facet of the organization. I enjoy the different challenges and operations also gives me the flexibility to try new things. Another great aspect about operations is they usually support the other divisions of an organization. Since, there are many divisions of an company if you do not enjoy one area its not a big deal since you can support other areas of the business.
Business is a great field to go into since it keeps your options wide open. That way you are not committing to one specific field and find out later that you hate it. Some fields in business include:
5. Human Resources
Many larger companies will start you in a rotational analyst program. By doing this you will get to see usually 2-4 different sections of the business. Companies offer this to not only help you hone in on your career path but many companies have realized that if there employees actually enjoy their job they will get better overall performance.
Lastly, I know it may be easy to get discouraged but just know your not the only person that has to walk this out. Many other people are going through the same process. You are not alone!
This is a very important transition that only you can determine the right next move for yourself. I know for me, i jumped right into continued education (community college) but eventually took a break. This break allowed me to figure out exactly what I wanted to do and allowed me to better prepare for the education needed to execute on my personal and professional goals. Once I felt confident I eventually went back to a 4 year university where i excelled because I prepared prior to moving back into the space. Life moves fast but you are not required to make this decision right away. Enjoy what you do and determine the best time to make these important decisions.
As for what you should do after high school, the answer will depend on your unique interests, passions, and goals. My advice to you is to take some time to reflect on what you truly want to achieve in life, and then start exploring your options.
Whether you choose to attend college, pursue a trade or technical program, travel, or start working right away, remember that the most important thing is to stay true to yourself and follow your own path.
To quote Ralph Waldo Emerson, "Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail." This means that you have the power to forge your own way in life, to create your own opportunities and make a difference in the world.
So, my actionable advice to you is to take the time to do your research, seek out guidance and mentorship from those who have gone before you, and stay open to new experiences and opportunities. You never know where your journey will take you, but if you stay true to yourself and keep pushing forward, you will find success and fulfillment.
In short, Bryson, the world is your oyster, and there's no limit to what you can achieve if you set your mind to it. So go ahead and seize the day - your future is waiting for you!
A second step would be to take the "year off" after graduation to explore a few entry level jobs before deciding which field to jump into college or trade school for, or before going straight into the "real" work force or military.
If you are truly lost, a third option may to be to speak with a military recruiter and/or to take the ASVAB which is just a Career Aptitude Test for the military that helps them decide which jobs you qualify for before enlistment. The military has a plethora of options ranging from aircraft and vehicle maintenance, to dental hygenists, to cooks, to cryptologists, to xray techs. A simple 4-yr contract may give you the aid you need to attend college afterwards or drive you towards a career field you choose.
1. 4-year college or university - A great opportunity to broaden your horizons and earn a degree.
2. 2-year community college - An affordable option that offers a mix of academic and vocational courses.
3. Trade and certificate programs - Gain skills in a specific industry or trade, such as plumbing or cosmetology.
4. Military - Serve your country while learning valuable skills and gaining access to education benefits.
5. Jump straight into the workforce - Use your talents and explore entry-level jobs in many fields.
6. Gap year - Take some time to travel, volunteer, or explore your passions before diving into the next stage of life.
7. Programs for people with disabilities - Plenty of specialized programs and support services to help you reach your full potential!
Remember, there's no "one size fits all" when it comes to your future, so take your time and explore what feels best for you. Good luck! 😄
Don't worry – there is a wealth of resources available to help guide you on your journey, from social media and YouTube to articles and peers who can share their wisdom and experiences. Embrace the unique path that lies ahead, as there is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to achieving your dreams.
Keep working hard and gathering the knowledge you'll need to excel. Remember that you have all the time in the world, and there's no reason to feel pressured to follow a specific direction. Trust in yourself and prioritize what's best for you – you've got this!