I never wanted a job that was just a job. I always wanted to be one of those people who was an example of ‘if you love what you do, you won’t work a day in your life.’ Who doesn’t?? College students focus too much figuring out what job they want and not enough time on identifying the qualities of life they want in that job. If I ask a student what job they want, they usually don’t know but they wish they knew what they wanted to do. However, if I asked a student if they wanted a job where there could travel, they would have an answer. If I asked a student if they wanted a job that would allow them to climb the corporate ladder, they would have an answer. In order to figure out your dream job, I suggest you first think about the qualities of your perfect job. From that list you can then identify careers and specific companies who may be able to fulfill those qualities. Figuring out your dream job will also help you figure out what major you should declare. A lot of you “undeclared” folk should especially create a lit. If you need some ideas see my personal criteria for my perfect job below:
Criteria for my perfect job
• Work with intelligent/educated people (I always want to learn from those who are smarter than me)
• Have work/life balance (that weighs heavy on the ‘life’ side)
• Complete small projects – to see accomplishments quickly
• Be able to see change (seeing change that I did motivates me for the next project)
• Ability to advance within the company (I’m a climber, I need to always have something to work towards)
• Training opportunities for employees (Again, I always like to climb and improve)
• Work with people (I can’t sit at a cubicle and stare at a computer screen all day)
• People bale to provide people information that I have, that will benefit their life (I want to advise people)
• Have a mentor (it’s helpful for your personal health to have someone you can vent to, with the door shut)
• Opportunities to give back to the community
Make your list today! Feel free to use some of my criteria.
You are annoyed, you don’t want to think about picking a major, life would be much easier if someone just told you what you are good at. An easy conversation starter at college is “what’s your major?” and while it has successfully started a conversation it has once again reminded you that you have no idea what you want to study, that everyone else seems to know, and the wave of confusion and frustration sweep over you once again. I may not be able to solve this problem and it may take you much more time to figure out what you want to major in. In fact, you may just get fed up and pick a major by throwing a dart at a list of majors your school offers (not a bad idea you think) because you are simply running out of time and the pressure from your advisor and parents is forcing you to just choose anything.
Rest assured you do not need to panic – you do not need to know right now.
Choosing a major is not the same thing as choosing what you want to do with the rest of your life. It simply means what you want to do with your life upon graduating. Heck, I was an accounting major and upon graduating I never once took a step in the doors of an accounting office. Take off some of that pressure because your major will help you with your first job but studies show that most people will change careers about four or five times over the course of their lives and there is no major that exists that will prepare you for that.
That brings me to my advice/things to think about when picking a major:
- What things in life excite you? Think about the times during your day when you have the most fun. (Don’t think too hard, if you have the most fun picking out an outfit – admit it! You can tailor a major around anything)
- Make a work criteria list that you would want (i.e. manage people, easy work life balance, 9am-5pm, work alone, no travel, fast pace) if this is the case yet you’re telling yourself you want to work in finance, you need to realize that your wants don’t match up to a career in finance. These are now things you can ask your advisor about or bring up with employers during interviews or informal meetings on campus.
- Go to the admissions office or the registrars office and pick up a course catalog – it has all the majors your school offers and classes you will take within that major. Do some research.
- Meet with professors. Many of them have worked in the field that they teach. Ask them what the career is like.
- Finally….suck it up and pick something. You don’t want to waste your time in college. Pick anything that you even remotely enjoy (you don’t have to love it). Once you pick it you can then use the remainder of your time at college working to get an internship and eventually a job. This may sound pushy but you all need to understand that once you pick you major it doesn’t mean you miraculously get handed a job in that field. Picking your major is the first step. You will need to use the time from when you declare that major to the time when you accept your first job offer to build up that lovely piece of paper we call a resume. So yes… if you’re still complaining because you have no idea what you want to study my kind words of advice are…. suck it up and throw a dart.
With | Love