Changing the Career Myths
The fairytale story that many young people have become accustomed to in today’s society goes a little something like this:
Once upon a time, the student graduated from high school with a high GPA and went to college to get a great education. After having the “college experience,” the student graduated and got a well-paying, employee job as soon as they left school. With this well-paying job, the student was successful, started a family, and lived well. The (happy) end.
That’s one of the common career myths that trip up young adults. The reality, however, is that this socially-expected track does not suit everyone. We can alter this fairytale so that young people have more opportunities and new ways of conceptualizing their lives. With a bit of new thinking, we can emphasize being happy in the now, to feel the in-the-moment euphoria and joy from not worrying, instead of ordering yourself to be happy right this minute. We all come from different experiences, and I think that these backgrounds should reflect a new fairytale.
There is nothing wrong with going to college, getting a great education, and enjoying yourself, but it’s important to have a plan B based on a new fairytale. For example, once leaving college, there is nothing wrong with going into business with your parents. In fact, I see this as an enormous opportunity; your parent doesn’t have to bankroll you, but they have experiences that can be beneficial as you are starting out.
Others options for graduates include contract jobs, two part-time jobs with one becoming full-time, creative work supported by part-time work, business with a family member or friend, or even a Kickstarter project. You can even do an internship before graduating or take a job out of college that allows for networking opportunities.
Based on the above fairytale, one of the biggest fears many new graduates face is finding a good job that not only pays well but has solid career prospects. There are ever-changing opportunities out there. You don’t have to follow a prescribed path or even be positive of your long-term career path.
Your new fairytale cold go something like this:
I recently graduated from college with a degree that I am proud of, and I had a project funded by Kick Starter with my college roommate after a few years of working a part-time job. We have been very successful, gotten married, and are now starting an organization to encourage future young graduates to pursue their dreams.