For some odd reason this topic keeps coming back in conversations I have had in the last few weeks.
Hi, I am Moon. I am a blogger. I am an engineer. I have published research in international journals and book compilations. And I draw and write.
The Twitter insert above is genuine some of the classes I had during my engineering major. But let me start at the beginning. Or rather do a “summary”.
Summary: Don’t worry too much about what you study or if you go to university/college. Even the best of plans can change by things out of your control, and sometimes you change.
Now to the longer version. I don’t remember what I wanted to be when I was a child. I know I wanted to write and create since I was 11 (when I wrote my first “novel” according to me at the time, filled a notebook with my mystery story). And I had the delightful benefit of being smart. The kind of smart that means your teachers send you to national competitions on topics and the like.
Everyone that knew me expected great things of me. My parents refused to let me study fashion design or to archivology (? this exists in Mexico), and I knew in the back of my head that they wouldn’t. So I chose an engineering major, and you know what criteria I used?
I chose the university first, because we had had one of those university/college fairs come to our school, and we were able to visit some of the universities. And I fell in love with the one I ended up choosing. It was relatively small, focused on making sure the graduates left ready to work in the industry, with more practice and certifications than just filling them up with theory.
So, university chosen, now what to study? I grabbed a pamphlet for each major they offered and read what actual classes they offered, alongside the certificates you could get for free and I chose the one that intrigued me the most and sounded more fun. That was it. And I don’t regret it.
However, I have never ever worked as an Engineer in Telematics.
Don’t get me wrong. The major helped a lot and it is because of what I learned in it that I have gotten several jobs. I have worked in cybersecurity, in supercomputing and clusters. I also did a lot of research. Because life happens I ended up working as a carer for people with dementia, autism and/or palliative care. It is because I knew what SCMP was (alongside other things) that I got the job I have now (and which is one of the best things ever).
I had great plans for my career. And I have done none of them. But as I look back, I can see that I haven’t missed out. I am actually probably better.
Yes, it wasn’t a straightforward path of “start as a newbie in X company, move up to be CEO”, and everyone kinda expected me to do the CEO thing. But once I shed all the expectations, I managed to stumble and find the job I have now. I love it.
So don’t give up on your future, or stress about the choices you make when choosing a major, or when going for a job. Sometimes we choose jobs outside of our “scope” (like me being a carer) that may give us unique skills that can help us get a much better job (like my people skills and emergency reactions thanks to that carer job). And you’ll find your way, one way or another. There isn’t only one way to do it.