Struggles With Finding An Industry: My Journey

What do you want to be when you grow up? Almost everyone has been asked this question, whether it’s been by a fellow classmate, family member, teacher, or interviewer. A few lucky ones end up following their dreams, getting the perfect career and everything pans out exactly how they manifested it years earlier. Many others end up in a career or field that they never dreamed of ending up in-- which often times means they either love it or hate it. Then, there are some who work any job to get by, not as a means to start or progress within a career or field, but to instead purely to have income every month. 

I remember being asked this question not only when I was a kid but also in high school, as I got closer to becoming a senior in high school and especially near graduation time. At first, I wanted to be a lawyer, then I wanted to go into civil engineering, and my final decision before I got to tech was architecture. Indecision is and was a common theme in these answers. 

My first semester at Tech changed things. I quickly  realized I could not and would not sit in a studio for hours on end-- for semesters on end, and then for years. So once again, I found myself evaluating my major and career options, and what I might consider as a potential career path of my own in the future. I thought through civil engineering, mechanical engineering, and finally industrial engineering, which is what I ended up going with. I needed something that wouldn’t force me to sit in a room for hours or confine a particular job until I had decided exactly what I wanted to do, which is what I love about my new major; having varying specifications through different concentrations. Choosing a career - for me- is all about the  journey and experience. 

Career fairs with huge successful companies from all over the globe are also imperative when it comes to making sure you know all of your options. Also, it’s good to intern and co-op to see what kind of jobs within your field are appealing and which ones you hate. This also fosters healthy working and networking relationships. I’ve heard a lot of stories about one company opening a door to another company and being an even better fit for the student-- which is extremely valuable if you’re indecisive like me and have trouble deciding exactly what kind of work you want to do. 

So, if you find yourself stressing about a career, keep these things in mind. First and foremost, we only have control over the choices we make and the decisions we go with. Use the resources at your disposal to take control of your future and your career. Ultimately, you can’t control every aspect of your career or your future so don’t freak out if things don’t go as planned. 

Second, you may start in one place but end up in a completely different area from what you began. Nothing is guaranteed and it is important to remember not to be so focused on where you end up, but to enjoy and soak in the journey along the way.