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Should I study something that I enjoy or something that makes a lot of money?

I'm a junior in high school with relatively good grades (A's and B's, some C's) and i'm super confused on what i want to study in college. Most of my family members tell me that i should pick something that is "hot in the industry" like IT or engineering. But as time has passed and I've thought about it, i really enjoy astronomy but there aren't really any colleges or jobs that offer me these choices. I've been interested in astronomy since i was little and have always wondered what lies behind night sky. And to be entirely honest I really have no idea what to study in high school for these subjects. Both technology and astronomy interest me but my interest lies more with astronomy. But at the same time i know that money is super important in this time and age and that the tech industry is full of money. #astronomy #technology #career


You can do a lot with a physics degree. Personally, I'd recommend majoring in physics with a concentration in astronomy and minoring in something more "practical" like programming or computer science. Then you kind of get the best of both worlds. Abby Lupi

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Catherine’s Answer

Hi Vincent
I find that people who are passionate about their job, lead more successful careers and fulfilling lives. I would recommend you study something you are passionate about and have a plan B, such as a minor in IT or engineering - or perhaps a double major. That will help you secure a job once you graduate and from there anything can happen. Job opportunities may lead you in a completely different path than astronomy or engineering.
At the end of the day, College studies give you the core skills & competencies you'll need to adapt and evolve in the industry. Learning doesn't end after College either, and quite often people re-invent themselves throughout their career. For example, I know several people with music, teaching, finance, or communications background who are leading very successful careers in IT.
Best of luck!
Catherine

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Eric’s Answer

Hi Vincent,

That is a very good question to most of people. Should I do what I love to do vs should I get a job that pay a lots of money? You need to find a balance on both. You like both technology and astronomy. I know that most astrologist uses technology on their job. You should not put all the eggs in one basket. Instead you should major in both when you are in college. By diversifying your career path, you will have more choices when you are ready to get your career started. By the time, you can make a decision on which path to choose (technology vs astronomy). Maybe at that time, money will also be one of the factors that influence your decision. But it is not the most important factor. The more important factors are opportunities you have and your interest to expand your career path. Please choose wisely on a career that you will enjoy and makes your career a life time one. Hope this helps!

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Andrew’s Answer

Hey Vincent,

I don't think the two have to be mutually exclusive. You could consider a double major or a minor in a field like computer science. This would allow you to focus on something you are passionate about and have some foundational skills that would help you if you want to focus more on a tech career after graduation. I know quite a few people who have gone that route majoring in psychology, music, or communication and have used their computer science minor to get their foot in the door at some of the top tech companies.

You could also take a look into what Abby suggested and find a field like physics that will overlap a little. The important thing is to make sure you immerse yourself in what you're studying to find out if you truly want to major in the field and give yourself time to change if you find you're not as passionate about it as you used to be.

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Natalie’s Answer

Hi Vincent,

I am a firm believer in studying something that you find interesting. When you study something that you enjoy, you tend to put in more effort that will lead to success which often leads to money. Regardless of major you study in college, you will gain skills in critical thinking, writing, communications, technology and math. Most people don't work in the field that they studied in college so you might as well enjoy the subject. On average, people change their careers 3 times in their life, so the major is less important as time goes on but the skills you gained. You will be most likely working until your 70's so you might as well like what you do.

Good Luck!

Natalie


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