Hi, OSU Career Beavers blog readers. It’s Finals Week of spring term 2012, and I’ve been writing to you all year about my changeable and wavy career path. I’ve taken many roads! Since graduating with my undergraduate degree, I’ve been an actor, a waiter, a receptionist, a creative writer, a college composition instructor, a gas station attendant, a high school drama coach, a substitute teacher, a real estate office manager, a writing workshop leader, a nonprofit program director, and now, while I’m in graduate school, I’m a career advisor! Imagine that, me with my wavy path, I get to help other folks figure out their paths, write their resumes and cover letters, prepare for their interviews, and search for jobs. One thing I’ve learned from helping students with these skills is that the better you’re able to articulate who you are and what your goals are, the easier it will be to explain those things to potential employers, through your resume, your cover letter, and in an interview situation. When I work with students that learn how to do this, they have the ability to land the jobs and opportunities they want.
If you’re still searching and your career path may be wavy like mine, you can still have goals and a strong sense of your identity. I needed to take the path I took in order to discover that advising at a college would be a great fit for my skills, my needs, my strengths, and my goals and priorities. But along the way, I was still able to tell others why the next experience, whatever it was, was the experience I needed to get me closer to my goal. Goals change, people change, but from where you sit right now, what is your goal? What is your dream job? If you could wave a magic wand, where would you work? Now, what do you need to do to get to that dream? If your dream changes in the process of getting there, that’s fine. The important thing is to have the dream and a plan.
In this swiftly changing economy, workers of the future will need to be adaptable. That is a given. So, why not look at change as opportunity, change as the ability to learn more, change as a way to explore another facet of who you can be in this life. I’ve always viewed change as positive and exciting. We only get one chance at this life thing; we might as well learn as much as we can!
Thanks for following my story this year. Good luck to you in your own path. May you be always learning more, about yourself and the world of work, so that you can create the place where the two meet and like each other a lot.
Jessica Baron is currently a Graduate Assistant in Career Services at OSU and a full time student in the College Student Services Administration Program.