Career Exploration – Determining Your Interests and Strengths
**The Edvocate is pleased to publish guest posts as way to fuel important conversations surrounding P-20 education in America. The opinions contained within guest posts are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official opinion of The Edvocate or Dr. Matthew Lynch.**
A guest post by Rachelle Wilber
These days, the pressure of choosing a career looms on students’ minds as they try to decide just what they want to do with the rest of their lives. While this is a difficult task, it’s not impossible. If you look at what you like to do, consider where you excel, and try to obtain practical experience in various fields, you’ll be more likely to know which career is right for you.
Do What You Love
The most important thing to consider is whether or not you’ll enjoy your career. If you simply can’t decide, pay attention to what you do while you procrastinate. Do you paint to relieve stress? Maybe you’re a future graphic designer. Are you a bookworm? You might make an excellent literature professor. Do you strive to understand how machinery and technology works? Engineering could be the right choice. Overall, look at the big picture of your life to observe which subjects you have found most engaging.
Play to Your Strengths
Consider where you’ve achieved the highest grades in your history of schooling to obtain an indication of what your core skills are. Of course, you don’t have to be skilled in your future career choice before college. That’s why higher education exists. Some schools know that electricians and HVAC techs benefit from module-based learning. Similarly, painters and sculptors may find training at an atelier or simply from their classmates in university. There are even trade schools for welders who hope to forge their futures with hot metal. If you take into account your strengths, you’ll gain insight into your career possibilities.
You won’t know if you truly enjoy something until you’ve experienced it first-hand. You’ll want to be sure you aren’t afraid of blood if you wish to work in the medical field, or that you truly enjoy researching the morphology of insects if you’re pursuing a graduate degree in biology. Sometimes, if you’re lucky, an internship or volunteering experience will be exactly what you need to solidify your pursuit of a career.
Although figuring out your future is complicated, it’s not impossible. If you focus on what you enjoy, pay attention to your skills, and pursue practical experience, you’re sure to gain insight into what careers are ideal for your personality.
Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer living in the San Diego, California area. She graduated from San Diego State University with her Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism and Media Studies. She tries to find an interest in all topics and themes, which prompts her writing. When she isn’t on her porch writing in the sun, you can find her shopping, at the beach, or at the gym. Follow her on twitter: @RachelleWilber