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Old 06-21-2005, 06:13 PM   #1
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I'm 27 and Still Have No Idea What I Want To be When I Grow Up

Here's the deal: I decided this spring, after many, many, many years of debating the pros and cons of it, that I was going to dive in and go back to school. Given the current standing of my job, it was really a no-brainer. The job itself is going fine, but the company I work for is basically going through a huge rough patch at the moment and for those of you who are in similar situations, it's always a game of "what if", which is always fun to play. Not only that, but this is exactly the sort of office job that I never imagined I'd still be in at this point in my life.

Anyway, to cut to the chase, I started doing some research a few weeks ago to see what kinds of programs I was interested in. I have always liked Sociology, so I thought, "Great, I can go for a degree in Sociology and do something with that, maybe become a social worker, go to Africa, etc." But after talks with some friends and my mom, I came away thinking I might want to use my writing skills and put it to use with a degree in Telecommunications, writing news for tv/radio - stuff like that.

The thing is, my heart is really in Sociology (for now; I might take one class and decide the passion I had for it back in high school is gone or what I feel for it now isn't strong enough to go the distance), but then again it could be Telecommunications I should go for, in the way of time and money. I'll be working full time while I go to school, so even a two year degree is going to take me some time to finish, and I can be a very impatient person, even though I know that anything worth having is worth waiting for. During all of this, the thought of pursuing a degree in English has been in the back of my mind, since I've always been so stuck on the writing thing. To top it off, my mom tonight brought up the fact that only a few years ago I was considering going to nail school (which was during my year of unemployment, which means I wasn't ever really serious about it) and that I even considered a job in marketing, buying for department stores. As you can see, I can change my mind, often, and without much notice. I'm good like that.

I know what you're thinking: "Pick a subject and stick with it!!!!!" That's exactly the thing; I'm so unsure of what I'd be happy doing. I'm about 65% sure it'd be Sociology, but of course you never know anything for sure until you dive into it. Also, I don't exactly have a gazillion dollars waiting for me in some trust fund if I decide midway through that "X" subject isn't for me. I did that seven years ago when I went to college the first time, so I'd better be damn sure of what I want before I go for it now.

My question, I guess (if you're still reading )is this: Am I diving headfirst into all of this without really thinking? Should I start slow, see what I like and go from there? Should I get my head out of the clouds and think like an adult for once?

I haven't even so much as applied anywhere yet (I was all set to a couple of weeks ago but then I had my five hundred epiphanies), and I'm already feeling as if I've screwed up.


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Old 06-21-2005, 06:17 PM   #2
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Nice thing about going to school is that you can take courses in both of your interests to see what you enjoy the most.

I am 30 and going backto school this fall and I don't know what I want to do with my life.

P.S. Get the applications in ASAP.

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Old 06-21-2005, 06:46 PM   #3
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If you are going part time, that means you get to take fewer courses than full time students, which doesn't leave you with much room to explore, I would think.

But it's important to see if you really do enjoy it before committing completely to it, because a lot of times, something that sounds interesting ends up being dull. Most people I know who went to study psych ended up hating it when they realized there was a lot more biology in there than psychology. That's just one example.

Have you considered doing something like a double major? That way you would have more options and you're likely to hit upon at least one thing you'd enjoy.
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:13 PM   #4
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I think you should go with your instincts. Think of something that you are truly passionate about, that really interests you. Having a job that you love is so fulfilling. But take your time. It's something that you have to give it a lot of thought. You're on the right path. Whatever you decide, I'm confident you will succeed.
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Old 06-21-2005, 07:20 PM   #5
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I'll give you a warning with telecommunications: once you graduate, you'll get stuck in low-paying menial jobs that trained monkeys can do. I'm already frustrated like all hell.

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Old 06-21-2005, 07:34 PM   #6
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I will tell you one thing about sociology (I'm majoring in it now) and that is that you really will have to love what you're going to do and not be in it for the money. Also a lot of jobs in the soci field like you to go to graduate school. Just to kind of give you an idea of what's ahead.

I love sociology, and if its what you think you could be passionate about for the rest of your life then go for it.
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Old 06-21-2005, 08:21 PM   #7
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Grow up? I still haven't done that...much less figured out WHAT to do then. But I'm getting a better idea finally, even though everything I've done in this town since I've gotten here has turned on me.
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Old 06-21-2005, 10:04 PM   #8
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Go with what's in your heart. No matter you decide, even if it's the 'right thing', you're still going to be a little fearful/nervous because it's new and uncertain. You shouldn't let that stop you though. Walk through the fear!
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Old 06-22-2005, 04:37 AM   #9
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another thing you could try out before diving in might be to do some networking in the fields you're considering, and see if you can interview someone established in the field, maybe do some job shadowing to get a feel for the day to day aspects of the work.

you could also make an appointment with the schools you're considering to talk to some professors, who would be able to give you a better idea of your options, what the classes are like, what career paths would open up, reading materials for you to check out, etc.

and don't feel bad about not knowing what you want to be when you grow up. at least you know that you want something more, and have the ambition to do something about it.

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Old 06-22-2005, 05:49 AM   #10
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I have quite a few friends who feel the same way. They went to college, got a job, and are thinking this isn't where I pictured myself.
I say talk to some people at the college to find out what your options are. Dive in, take a few classes.
If you are considering social work maybe get certified to work in a school. I'm biased, I'm a teacher, but I love our school social worker and she really loves what she does.
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Old 06-22-2005, 05:55 AM   #11
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i think you might be thinking of the writing angle a little too narrowly. my degree is in mass communication, and i tailored my studies to largely focus on telecommunications, broadcasting and the regulation of such domains (something as broad as mass comm can also be focused on history of radio, or interorganization communication). i suppose i could have gone into journalism had i been so inclined, but i started with the federal regulator of the technical aspects of communications here in canada doing far better than i would have otherwise.

as much as i considered those other mass comm avenues far less pragmatic and employable in a professional setting, i have found sociology to have very limited use.

of course, it is all a moot point if you don't enjoy it. i loved my mass comm classes and ended up doing far better in them than at any previous academic level. if sociology is where your heart lies, i would suggest looking for the more pragmatic domains, such as social work-as you mentioned.
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Old 06-22-2005, 07:13 AM   #12
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I know how you feel April, I'm 34 and still confused about what I want to do. Now I'm trying to decide if (when I eventually get my work papers here) I should go back to fundraising (which is practical and which I have done successfully) or start a new career teaching ballet! I have no clue.

As for you, I think you will regret it if you don't at least dip your toe into the sociology thing. Take a course part time to test it out and if it doesn't work out, you won't have lost anything and then you can pursue the writing angle. That's what I think anyway.
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Old 06-22-2005, 08:17 AM   #13
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i'm 27 and clueless too. i have a bachelor of science in kinesiology and i'm working as a dnetal receptionist.

i'm trying to work out what i want to do as well but my 30, 000 in student loans from my first degree are kinda stopping me in my tracks.

so your definately not alone in feeling waht you do and good luck with whatever choice you make.
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Old 06-22-2005, 08:19 AM   #14
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I'm 31 and I know exactly what I want to do.

I want to go to Mauritius and drink rum on the beach.
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Old 06-22-2005, 09:19 AM   #15
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Girl I'm 32 and still sittin my butt in an office job But, I am content and happy with it.

It just depends on how you feel, if you are not happy with your job/career you can do whatever you want, whatever you set your mind to. You're a smart girl, whatever you choose I'm sure you will be successful

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