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How to figure out what I want to pursue later in my life?

I am currently an informatics major in college with a concentration in User Interactive Experience. Initially I was a computer science major, but saw it wasn't something I 100% wanted to do. How can I figure out what I want to do. I enjoy coding and web design, but Im also interested in owning my own business. I don't know if the major I'm in is beneficial to where I want to go. How can one figure out what they want to do with their life?

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Subject: Career question for you

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Tenchy’s Answer

Hello Jayla,

Here's a quick guide for you. Start by exploring UX/UI entry-level positions and web design roles on platforms like Glassdoor and LinkedIn. Make sure to check if the job descriptions align with your interests. It's also crucial to consider the salary ranges at this stage, as it's often surprising to many when they find out about the compensation later. Now is the perfect time to weigh the effort required against the potential earnings in your chosen field.

Remember, your initial choice doesn't have to be your forever choice. The tech industry is versatile, and many roles overlap, including project management and consulting. For instance, if you find yourself drawn to starting an Airbnb or a consulting firm after watching YouTube videos, know that you can always transition into that or even try it out part-time.

To get a realistic understanding of these roles, search on YouTube for videos like "A Day in the Life of a UX developer" and listen to the real-life experiences of people working in these tech positions. This will help you gain a better understanding of what to expect. Best of luck on your journey!
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Seng’s Answer

Jayla,

Discovering your passion is a journey, and the best way to embark on it is by diving in headfirst. Take my experience, for instance. While still in college, I launched an IT consulting business and began coding for small businesses. This hands-on approach allowed me to learn and grow in real-time.

So, don't hesitate to experiment through your hobbies, extracurricular activities, or even a side business. It's through this process of trial and error that you'll uncover what truly resonates with you and where your strengths lie.

Remember, it's okay to stumble and fall along the way. Each misstep is an opportunity to learn and improve. In fact, you'll often find that your greatest lessons come from your failures, not your successes. So, keep trying, keep exploring, and most importantly, keep learning.
Thank you comment icon Thanks for your encouragement! I really appreciate the anecdotal, about you starting a business in college. Im going to attempt to experiment with a business of my own and really pushing my hobbies further. Thank you truly, Seng! Jayla
Thank you comment icon Small business is always looking for help, So, you may find some opportunity there for some small consulting projects. Seng Gan
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Pamela’s Answer

Hello Jayla
Pray first. I will be 🙏🏾 praying with on decision making (Romans 12:1-2) but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to rest and approve what God's will is his good, pleasing and perfect will.

1. Self-reflection: Take some time to reflect on your interests, strengths, values, and goals. Think about what activities or subjects make you the most excited and fulfilled.

2. Explore different opportunities: Try out different activities, hobbies, internships, or volunteer opportunities to see what you enjoy and excel at. This can help you narrow down your interests and passions.

3. Talk to others: Seek advice and guidance from mentors, teachers, family members, or career counselors. They can offer valuable insights and help you explore different career options.

4. Research: Take the time to research different career fields and industries. Learn about the job responsibilities, salary potential, and job outlook for different careers to help you make an informed decision.

5. Set goals: Set short-term and long-term goals for yourself. This can help you stay motivated and focused on pursuing your passions and interests.

6. Follow your intuition: Trust your gut instinct and listen to what feels right for you. Pay attention to your inner desires and passions, as they can guide you towards a fulfilling career path.

7. Stay open-minded: Be willing to explore different opportunities and be open to new experiences. You never know where your interests and passions may lead you.

8. Seek feedback: Ask for feedback from others about your skills, strengths, and areas for improvement. This can help you gain valuable insights into your abilities and potential career paths.

Remember, finding your passion and pursuing a fulfilling career may take time and effort. Stay patient, stay proactive, and stay open to new opportunities.
Best Wishes,
-Professional Pamela Knight
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Mireya’s Answer

College is an excellent platform to explore and determine the path you wish to pursue in your studies. I highly encourage you to visit your college's Career Center. They are equipped to provide guidance and present opportunities for shadowing in various fields, as well as internships.
Thank you comment icon Oh, I never thought about that! Definitely will go check them out now. Thank you much Mireya. Jayla
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William’s Answer

I was in similar situation where my interest, goals, and assumptions of how my life should be were at odds with each other. Would suggest following your interest and keep pushing thru the obstacles that are sure to come, as they did for all of us. Those setbacks you will experience will help you further learn what your path should be and eventually you will find the right one. One key item I would note is that many people have degrees that are not specifically related to career field they are in so do no think you are locked in by that choice.
Thank you comment icon Thank you, William for the advice. At times it might feel like what you take in college is what you are forced to be in life, but yes I’ll try not to think I’m stuck with this. Jayla
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James Constantine’s Answer

Dear Jayla,

Guidelines on Discovering Your Future Life Goals

Unraveling your life's aspirations can be a daunting and introspective journey. Here are some practical steps to help you uncover your interests and objectives:

Introspection: Dedicate time to ponder on your hobbies, principles, strengths, and areas for improvement. Reflect on activities that bring you satisfaction and vitality. Recall past experiences that have given you happiness or a sense of achievement.

Diversify Your Experience: Given your interest in coding, web design, and entrepreneurship, consider seeking internships, part-time employment, or volunteering in these fields. This practical exposure can help you determine if these sectors align with your passions and objectives.

Build Connections: Engage with professionals in the industries you're curious about. Informational discussions can offer valuable insights into various career trajectories and help you understand the daily routine in specific roles.

Career Evaluations: Think about taking career evaluations or personality quizzes to gain a deeper understanding of your strengths, preferences, and potential career routes. While these evaluations shouldn't be the only factor in your decision-making, they can provide additional viewpoints.

Consult with Advisors/Careers Counselors: Reach out to academic advisors or career counselors at your college for guidance. They can offer resources, recommendations, and support as you navigate your academic and career decisions.

Try New Things: Don't hesitate to venture outside your comfort zone. Participate in workshops, seminars, or conferences related to technology, entrepreneurship, or any other fields that pique your interest.

Define Your Goals: Set immediate and long-term goals based on your interests and ambitions. Clear goals can streamline your decision-making process and keep your motivation high.

Never Stop Learning: Keep your curiosity alive and continue learning about various subjects that fascinate you. This ongoing learning journey can reveal new opportunities and help you remain adaptable in a fast-paced job market.

Understand that it's perfectly fine not to have all the answers immediately. Your interests may change over time, so remain open-minded and flexible as you explore different possibilities.

Top 3 Credible References Used:

Harvard Business Review: A trusted source for career guidance, leadership wisdom, and business trends.

Forbes: Renowned for its coverage on entrepreneurship, technology, finance, and leadership subjects.

The Balance Careers: Offers practical advice on a range of career-related topics such as job hunting, resume crafting, and professional growth strategies.

GOD BLESS YOU!
JC.
Thank you comment icon Thank you for the advice, James Constantine. May God bless as well! Jayla
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Asher’s Answer

I encourage you to assess your abilities and see if this is something you can genuinely excel at. Also, consider how this job will shape your future. Remember, your potential is limitless.
Thank you comment icon If I put my mind to it, I think it could be something I could excel at, but at times I don’t think the passion is fully there. So I’m often at this crossroads of I could do this for the rest of my life, but do I want to. Appreciate the advice though, thank you Asher. Jayla
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Angela’s Answer

Hello Jayla,

These are great questions! Both career paths you're considering are fantastic choices, but I understand the importance of landing in a profession that will bring you joy. The journey to answering this question begins with introspection and investigation.

1. How do you envision your daily routine and which career path fits into this picture?
2. Can you see yourself remaining enthusiastic about this career over the next 2-5 years?
3. Would it be beneficial to gain experience in a company before branching out and establishing your own?

Furthermore, internships are an excellent platform to delve into various roles and organizations that might pique your interest.

internship

To assist in your growth and career discovery, Access Your Potential Career Readiness and Digital Skills courses are at your disposal. Visit http://accessyourpotential.pwc.com/ for more.

I hope this guidance will be of help!

Here's to a successful journey, Jayla!
Thank you comment icon Thank you for sharing your perspective Angela. I’ll take a look at the access your potential site and begin thinking about your questions, it seems like a good place to start. Jayla
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Luke’s Answer

With few exceptions, your major and schooling doesn't define your career. If you enjoy school & have the ability to prioritize it longer, then by all means, continue enrolling in courses that seem appealing to you. You're "shopping" — you're looking for exposure to something that draws you in further. This is fine as long as you do it with intention and/or enjoy it.

But school isn't the only option! You can begin collecting work experience today in (almost) any industry. Once there, ask questions, soak up as much information as possible... just like you (hopefully) would in school. A risk is that your particular job is too low-level for what you really want to try, but if you were to have that desired-level job anyway, you'd still have to put in the time & effort to begin with, so might as well start now... but also congrats on finding something you're into!

Lastly, you're never too old to change careers or to be interested in new things.

Not knowing what you want to do for a career is an exposure problem. So go collect as much info as you can.

The career will carve itself out of what you prioritize most.
Thank you comment icon Thank you for the advice, Luke. Jayla
Thank you comment icon I liked this, the idea of not being stuck to your major, but instead using it to just gain more information. Much appreciated insight. Jayla
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Michaela’s Answer

Figuring out what you want to pursue in life can be a journey of self-discovery and exploration. Here are some steps to help you identify your passions, interests, and career goals:

1. **Reflect on Your Interests and Values**: Take some time to reflect on what truly interests you and aligns with your values. Consider your hobbies, activities, and experiences that bring you joy and fulfillment. Think about the aspects of coding, web design, and business ownership that excite you the most.

2. **Explore Different Career Paths**: Research and explore different career options that align with your interests and skills. Look into roles related to informatics, user experience design, software development, entrepreneurship, and business ownership. Consider the day-to-day responsibilities, required qualifications, and potential career paths in each field.

3. **Gain Hands-On Experience**: Seek out opportunities to gain hands-on experience in areas that interest you. Take on internships, part-time jobs, volunteer roles, or freelance projects related to coding, web design, user experience, or entrepreneurship. Real-world experience can help you clarify your interests and preferences.

4. **Network and Seek Guidance**: Connect with professionals, mentors, and alumni in fields you're interested in. Reach out to them for informational interviews, advice, and insights into their career paths. Networking can provide valuable guidance and help you gain a better understanding of different industries and roles.

5. **Experiment and Try New Things**: Don't be afraid to experiment and try new things. Take elective courses, attend workshops, or join clubs and organizations related to your interests. Explore different avenues of creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurship to see what resonates with you.

6. **Evaluate Your Current Major**: Assess whether your informatics major with a concentration in User Interactive Experience aligns with your career goals and aspirations. Consider whether the coursework, skills, and experiences you're gaining are relevant and beneficial to your desired career path. If not, explore potential minors, certificates, or additional coursework that could complement your interests and goals.

7. **Set Goals and Create a Plan**: Once you have a clearer sense of your interests and goals, set specific, achievable goals for your personal and professional development. Create a plan outlining the steps you need to take to achieve your goals, including acquiring relevant skills, gaining experience, and building your network.

8. **Seek Feedback and Reflect**: Throughout your journey of exploration and growth, seek feedback from others and reflect on your experiences. Pay attention to what energizes and motivates you, as well as what challenges you and pushes you out of your comfort zone. Use feedback and self-reflection to refine your goals and aspirations.

9. **Stay Open-Minded and Flexible**: Keep an open mind and remain flexible as you explore different paths and opportunities. Your interests and goals may evolve over time, and it's okay to pivot or change direction if you discover new passions or interests along the way.

By following these steps and embracing the journey of self-discovery, you can gain clarity and confidence in choosing a path that aligns with your passions, values, and aspirations. Remember that it's okay to explore and experiment, and that finding your path is a process that takes time and patience.
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