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What are the factors I should be considering when deciding my future career?

I haven't even solidified a major or decided what my "dream job" would be. I've tried these tests that are supposed to link me with jobs but none of them make sense to me.

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Subject: Career question for you

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Judith-Ann’s Answer

Hello, Julia. Isn't it interesting how some people know their interests and career paths from first grade on and others like yourself must take a journey into the unknown and find a path that brings the answers you seek. In addition to the answers from Julien and Saumya, I would like to add a few more points of consideration: 1) if money were no object, what would you do with your time? 2) What part of the world do you wish to live and work? Consider climate, landscaping, mountainous or ocean or lake, terrain. 3) What cultures do you find interesting? 4) What are the books about that you like to read? 5) What films do you enjoy watching and why? 6) What income would make you comfortable? 7)What age group do you prefer to be with? 8) How does your faith or spirituality intersect with you interests? 9) Who do you admire and why? 10) What kind of physical fitness interests you?
Take some time to meditate and journal your answers. Ask others the same questions and learn to listen to their answers. Above all, be honest and true to yourself. I also encourage you to read "What Color is Your Parachute? " It's specifically written for people asking the same questions you are.
You are off to a great adventure. Enjoy all that you can.
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Saumya’s Answer

Hi Julia! Do you not feel awfully stressed about this. More often than not, students are in the same boat as you are in now. There's rarely perfect clarity about a 'dream job' and even in those rare instances, there are chances that one's 'dream job' changes with time and circumstances. You could explore your interests in the following ways, among others:

1. Speaking to career/guidance counsellors at school: It may be a viable option to consult with the designated career counsellors at your school. They are trained to be able to help you recognize your interest areas. If your school does not offer a counsellor service, you could also consult an external counsellor. [In some cases, it may also be helpful to speak with a few teachers who have known you for long, whom you consider your mentors and who may recognize your strengths.]

2. Research areas of study: It may be helpful to focus your energy on exploring the areas of study that you find interesting rather than aiming towards a particular ' dream job'. If there are certain academic subjects / arts / sports in school that spark your interest and you look forward to attending those classes and you're doing reasonably well- you could choose that as a starting point to research into the various viable professions that the subject opens up for you. If there are more than one such subjects, you could choose your main interest as your major and a couple others as your minors. Many colleges will offer you the flexibility to choose a wide variety of subjects.

3. Open to change: It is crucial that you are always open to reevaluating yourself and reconsidering your options, if required. It is perfectly acceptable to change your subjects or even career lines later in the future. With time you will begin to recognize yourself and find your space. Most academic choices that you will make will not be a mistake, even if you change those later, as they will always help you grow and learn in some way. Don't be afraid of taking a well-researched plunge and exploring yourself.

Hope this helps!

Regards,
Saumya
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Rube Charles’s Answer

What do you love to do, do you love money, do you want a career doing something you love, do you think your going to be happy doing this and or any job for the rest of your life. Pick a major/minor you are going to be able to use and have multiple career paths and not just one field unless that one field you are passionate about. I knw this might sound corny, but follow your dreams and your heart.
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Megan’s Answer

Hi Julien!

My best advice to you is to explore your options!
Volunteer in areas that interest you that help you explore careers
Get a part time job or internship in things that interest you
Job shadow- family, friends, whoever
Research, follow careers of interest on social media, etc.
Talk to your school counselor about exploring careers

As far as things to consider:
- If you decide to go to college you do not want your degree to cost more than your starting salary
- Look at websites like O*net to see expected job openings, salaries and projections on careers of interest
-I often tell students who do not know what they want to do to look into high wage, high demand careers (you can see this on O*net)

I hope this helps!
Thank you comment icon This is the response most useful to the students question. Volunteering is a great way to build your network and find out what you do and do not like to do. then the second half will come into play when you have narrowed down your list of what you would want t a degree for. Monica Hipsher
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Julien’s Answer

It varies based on what your hoping to achieve long term, what area are you interested in entering (ie. tech, healthcare, the arts, education, etc) once you break it down, try to connect with idnviduals in the area of interest you want to pursue and ask questions on education requirements, job prospects in order to build your career. What helps is if your an undecided major at a community college or university take a bunch of classes in different subjects and explore that helps with breaking down what you want to go for later down the road.
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Heather’s Answer

I suggest you focus on things you are naturally interested in and channel your career choices in that direction. Is there something you would do even if you would not get paid for it? This will help you. Also, pray and ask what you are designed to do, and listen to the answers you hear/discover.
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William’s Answer

Firstly, pinpoint the career you're passionate about. Discover your unique area of interest, then begin to establish a reputation within that field. Depending on your chosen career, you might need a job to finance your pursuits, or you might stumble upon something you love doing. Regardless, start by identifying what you want, then gradually work towards accomplishing it to successfully enter the career field you're interested in.
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Greeshma’s Answer

Hey there! It's absolutely fine if you're unsure about the answer to this question while you're still in school. After all, school is a place for exploration, for discovering your strengths, identifying what brings you happiness, and finding personal satisfaction. Here's a little guidance:

1. Begin with a wide perspective - Are you drawn towards Creativity, Business, or Science? Remember, as you accumulate more experience, you can even blend these areas.
2. Dive into career options within your chosen field - If it's Creativity, consider Culinary, Arts, Entertainment, Literature, and more. If Business appeals to you, think about Marketing, Finance, Logistics, or Project Management. Or if it's Science, consider Medicine, Engineering, or Research.
3. Engage in conversations with people you know - friends, acquaintances, family. Each one of them can be a wellspring of knowledge.
4. Investigate potential roles, from entry to mid-level, to sketch out a career path.
5. Evaluate factors such as - Salary scale, work-life balance, geographical locations.

Remember, it's perfectly fine if you don't nail it on your first try. The more you learn, the closer you'll get to figuring it out. Hope this guidance helps you on your journey!
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