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How do I know what career is for me? Ive had my mind set on being a veterinarian but as Ive gotten older i feel drawn to serving others. What career could help me fulfill my calling?

I feel like i should giving a veterinarian a shot since its been my plan since a child. In the last year or so I've been reconsidering being a veterinarian because I really enjoy making others peoples lives easier. I just dont know what career to go into and what would satisfy my need to help others.
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Katie’s Answer

The beautiful thing about being young is that you can try a bunch of different things out to see what works; by getting internships or volunteering. There is so much that you could to do to help be of service to others by looking at where else veterinarians work other than at a private practice. Maybe go to an animal shelter and volunteer there and see what the vets do there. I would also say informal interviews are going to be your friend here. Ask a bunch of people what they do (and pro-tip: People love to talk about themselves) and find out what drives them. What got them into that field? I think you also need to look within yourself and find out what does being of service mean to you. When do you feel that you are the most in service? Is there a career that you can make out of that? The world is your oyster, explore! And the other thing is a lot of us have followed different career paths to get where we are. Most people don't go in a straight line, so it is ok to try things for a few years and if you realize that job isn't for you how do you then move to do something with the skill set that you have built! Most people have many careers in life, so you may find one that works for a bit and then need to do something else for a variety of reasons. Just because you start in one place doesn't mean you won't end up in another! Good luck and you got this!


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Ann’s Answer

I completely agree with Katie's answer. Don't lock yourself in too soon to a career direction. It may seem like a relief to all, including yourself, that you know what you want to do. But then you feel a little guilty about changing your mind and disappointing others who may have been proud of your choice. Better to let people know that you are exploring several possible directions related to medical, veterinary or other sciences. Sounds like you would like to help animals or people with problems of one sort or another. One thing to rule in or rule out that choice is to find out how well you do in the study of math and science. If you hate sciences or don't succeed in your studies in these areas, then you can still take your interest in these fields into careers that are related to helping people or animals, but which are not so heavy in the sciences as medical and veterinary education. I always recommend that students go to https://www.onetonline.org/ , the US Department of Labor website that can help you relate your interests and values to various career options that would be a good fit and the pathways and educational requirements for these directions. Good luck. Ann Brody

Ann recommends the following next steps:

Go to https://www.onetonline.org/ to learn more about the careers that might be a good fit for your interest and values.
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Sudeep’s Answer

It is first to test your question with another question and see if you have the answers. for example. If you are interested in being a Veterinarian, ask yourself these questions: Do you enjoy working with animals more than with people? Have you enjoyed and had a great sense of gratification when you have helped a pet or animal than people? Do you often read about animals and talk about them more than about people? have you done a comparative chart of what motivates you more to taking the path of veterinarian than any other path?

By asking yourself these question, you will slowly be able to zoom in to having a better understanding of who you are and where you plan to do. Please also recognise that in life, that we could move onto something else mid-way. That is possible but right now, if you go along this path chances are you will eventually pick up the tools of how to manage a similar situation later in your career or life.

All the best!

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Julia E.’s Answer

I understand the draw to want to help others, but also pursue a lifelong goal. I encourage you to broaden how you think of veterinarians. While veterinarians directly help improve animals' lives, they also indirectly improve the animals' owners lives. Pets are shown to increase our happiness and help us live longer. As a veterinarian, you would help people learn how to best take care of their pets and in turn, most likely improve the happiness of that owner long term. I would also encourage you to explore your options by interviewing veterinarians. This would not only help you gain further insight into the profession and receive answers to your questions, but will help you make your first contacts in the field. These new contacts could turn into mentors or future employers.

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LaToya’s Answer

The beautiful thing about life is that you change every single day. When we are young, we dream and aspire. Often times that changes and we get reluctant to change. We live our lives thinking we need to be one thing.

My advice, do no limit yourself. Your passionate is serving others, find a career that aligns with that. Another thing is, it’s okay if after a year that’s not you anymore. As Michelle Obama stated in her memoir, each day we are becoming. We are never just one thing. So be a Veterinarian, work for a non-profit, becoming certified nurse assistant, become a dental hygienist, or whatever my align with you today.

Do not be afraid to try something new or change. Do not place yourself in a box. You are meant for greatness.

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Anthony’s Answer

Hello Samantha. There are many career fields where you can help people. The question is: what do you want to help people with? There is a calling out there with your name on it. At times, we have to ask ourselves those critical questions to help us get closer to the specifics of what we want to do.

Veterinarian is a great field. You get to help animals. This is a way of helping people in keeping their family members around. Do you want to help people in this way or with other areas of their life?

Anthony recommends the following next steps:

Ask yourself what do you want to help people with?
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Take a career assessment, such as the ONet assessment at www.onetonline.org
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After taking the assessment, research each career field to see which one interest you most
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Ask your High School counselor for assistance
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