Today’s HS juniors will retire in 2065.
That, of course, assumes they don’t work past age 70.
So, when an article comes out suggesting that these are the best majors in terms of employment and it bases its findings on data from 2011 (or earlier) – well – that’s pretty funny.
I chose a major in 1982. Communications. I wanted to be the next Marv Albert.
That was 30 years ago. I chose the field of radio and TV in a world that had 10 channels, terrestrial radio, no YouTube and – if there wasn’t such a thing as facial hair - we wouldn’t have been able to edit sound. (**If you don’t get the reference, there’s an explanation at the end of this blog post)
But I knew that I liked media. I liked communicating.
I did it ‘old school’ – 4 years, 1 major, 1 school. I had a B+ average and graduated with Latin words attached.
I then started a career path that veered from door-to-door environmental canvasser on Long Island to Leukemia Society Program Coordinator (bunny hops and bowl-a-thons) to Social Services Examiner to a phone call on a pay phone at the bar that I lived above on Jericho Turnpike because the phone in my apartment was busted. Yes, the phone call that changed everything. I was invited to interview for the position of Admission Counselor at Wagner College.
12.5 plus room and board.
And I found my calling. But – along the way – I’ve made turns into financial aid and twists into independent counseling and a detour to New Jersey. And I’ve built a career that had both nothing to do with Communications and everything to do with Communications.
It had nothing to do with Moviolas or tripods or splicing tape or “How Real is Real?” and other communications theory.
But, it had everything to do with Communications because I knew how to write and speak and interact and work with a team. And I knew deadlines and time management and reading from a script. And I knew about College.
It’s easy to sit here and type (word process?) these words and recommend what you should do with your time and money.
Your role in this dialogue is much harder. I understand the trepidation and concern. Will Brad get a job? Will Ashley be successful? Is this the right decision for Caitlin? Why on earth did Justin pick that career?
That’s why I picked Communications. Didn’t think there would be any money in English…
But life has its own design. And the best tools a college can give you are the ability to think, write, speak, play well with others and lead a team. The two best tools of all may be the ability to adapt. And the understanding that you will probably have to.
How you use those tools is up to you, regardless of the institution that you choose to attend.
As always, I welcome your comments and questions. Please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, call or text me at 908-403-3819, join me on Facebook on “College Counseling for the Rest of Us” and join me on Twitter at @MichaelCCR. And now on YouTube at http://www.youtube.com/user/CCRMichael?feature=mhee.
(Spoiler Alert: **Sound editing was done, at least then, by splicing tape via razor blades.)