Friday, November 21, 2008

Question Me Good - Pt. 11

I'm running out of questions to answer. It looks like this series will come to an end this weekend unless I get more questions over the next day or two. If you haven't gotten your question in yet, there's still time. Just go leave a comment on the original post. Hurry!

The question of the day comes from Betsy.

What other professions did you consider?

This question is best answered in list form because there were plenty. I've listed them in the order in which I considered them, and I found that this order says a lot about my evolution as a person. I have to admit that many of the professions listed below are things I'd still consider doing in the future. Who says a woman can't change her career path a few times before she retires, anyway?

  1. Astronaut - Who didn't want to be an astronaut after watching Space Camp?
  2. Teacher - Doesn't every kid go through the teacher phase?
  3. Doctor - This one lasted for a long time, until I passed out at the sight of blood a few times. After almost four years of premedical coursework I just wasn't sure that I'd make a very good doctor.
  4. Behavior Therapist - After working with two children with autism, I started to wonder if becoming a licensed psychologist who treated children with severe behavior disorders might not be for me. It wasn't. While the rewards were great, I got burned out really quickly.
  5. Special Education Teacher - Five years at Kennedy Krieger Institute coordinating special education programming for one of their inpatient units was great experience, but dealing with the school districts and trying to get those patients services in the classroom once they were discharged convinced me that I wouldn't fit in well with the status quo mentality of many school administrations. Money was a major issue and despite how much teachers believed their students needed services, administrations were often staunchly against providing them. I'm sure they wanted to, but their hands were tied more often than not.
  6. English Teacher - While butting heads over special ed services wasn't something I was interested in doing, I still imagined myself working with city high-schoolers and teaching them to love books and lanuage as much as I do. After looking into a few teacher certification programs and considering my options and my skills, I'm still not convinced I'm cut from the teacher cloth. There's still a possibility that I'll take that leap one day, though. Maybe at the college level...who knows.
  7. Freelance Writer - I'm currently working on this one. I'm employed as a tech writer/project manager and pick up freelance projects of all writing types on the side. I've written and/or edited everything from resumes and cover letters to grant proposals to web copy to fiction and creative non-fiction stories. You name it, I've probably written it, or at least attempted it. Eventually, I imagine trying my hand at full-time freelancing, but having a steady gig that pays the bills and provides benefits is a very comfortable place to be. I don't know if and when I'll ever take the freelance leap. Especially in today's economic climate. I'm trying to plan for it though, so that if the opportunity presents itself I'll have money saved and clients at-the-ready.
  8. Novelist - Again, working on this one. My first novel is in the works and I'd love it if I could become one of those great novelists who can afford to do nothing but write books. In the meantime, see #7.
What professions have you considered and how do they compare to what you do now? Are you working in your dream career or do you have a career goal that you're still striving for?

If you've got a burning question for me but haven't had a chance to ask it, you can go to the original post and leave your question in a comment. I'll keep answering a question or two a day until they're all answered.

If you're just tuning in, check out the rest of the series.


Angie Ledbetter said...

Amazing similarities between my list and yours. I've done #2, 5, 7, and 8. Considered 4 and 6. (And BTW, your assumptions concerning #5 are dead on!)

I wonder sometimes if I should've thought harder about a psychology degree instead of the Journalism. Or maybe a double major?

All these varied career experiences def lend to the writing stuff!

Kayris said...

Well, I have a degree in Molecular Biology, but I probably should have majored in journalism instead. The Bio major was originally intended as a stepping stone into vet school, and I ended up changing my mind. I've been a vet tech for over ten years now and I love it, but sometimes I feel guilty about that college degree that I'm not using.

Ami said...

Angie - I was a double major in biology and psychology. I'm glad I didn't back myself into a corner by majoring in something like chemistry. I'm a learner at heart, so it probably wouldn't have mattered what I majored in, I'd probably still be testing the waters in all sorts of professions. :)

MommyK - My sister is getting her vet tech certification...she was a pre-vet major and ended up deciding against it, too. All the journalism majors I know are doing a variety of jobs, most of which don't involve journalism, so it probably wouldn't have made a difference. And a molecular biology degree is pretty great accomplishment, no matter what you're doing now. :)

Lulu said...

I wanted to be an olympian (runner) and then a doctor, then a social worker, then I can`t remember...

I tossed up publishing and even worked in the industry a little then thought about event management but it went no where.

I am not living up to my career goals at all- I have a degree in PR & Japanese with a minor in Journalism and I don`t think you could say I really use it. Except for the Japanese in speaking with my partner! hehe!

Deep down I know I want to be a writer, or wish I could be more accurately but I don`t think I have the talent.

When I return to Japan, if I get the highest level of the proficiency exam (will do it next December) then I might try my hand at translating.

I have taught English, worked as a preschool teacher, worked in publishing, been a student coordinator for medical students, written for a magazine (when I was working in publishing), worked as an assistant manager for a company that helps foreign women in Japan, worked as a tour guide interpretting and worked in admin and communications and am now back doing government admin work until we return to Japan. All those jobs and I am only 23.

More than likely when I return to Japan I will go back to preschool teaching. But who knows...

Melanie said...

I always wanted to be a mom. Check. I secretly wanted to be a comedian for YEARS. Um... Now I want to work with information... As a librarian, or archivist.

Ami said...

Lulu - It must be hard to settle into a career when you're not settled in a place yet. I bet you'd make an excellent translator or teacher. As for the writing, keep working at it. I'm sure you have more talent than you think you do and you won't ever know if you don't write.

Reluctant - I've always wanted to be a mom, too. That's still coming. It's an interesting change from comedian to librarian. I get the impression there's not a lot of joking going on at the library. :) It is one of my favorite places to be, though, and I can imagine I'd enjoy being a librarian, too. I should probably add that to my list of possibilities.

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