The following is a post that I wrote for my uncle’s website, http://www.choosingmycareer.com. He began this e-book store, and co-authored a book series, “So You Want To Be A…”. These affordable e-books are FULL of practically any information, advice and guidance that you would need to be successful on the career path of your choice. Read my post, check out the site. download an e-book for a high schooler, friend, family member or for yourself!
So…. I Want To Be A Teacher
I was fortunate enough to know exactly what I wanted to do with my life since I was about 5 years old. I wanted to stand in front of my teddy bears and doll babies and teach them everything I knew from A-Z and from 1-probably about 30. I would teach them how to write letters, sing songs, read stories and especially how to be nice to each other. I was a natural. I spent the rest of my elementary, middle and high school years perpetuating this as well; I volunteered at after school programs, tutored Spanish at the local elementary school during my high school study halls, and volunteered in classrooms from Syracuse, N.Y. To Quepos, Costa Rica. I was going to be a teacher when I grew up.
I knew what I wanted to do, but had no idea how to do it!
My parents had not gone to 4 year colleges and my older sister was the first of us to go. She was inherently independent and basically found a way to navigate the college admissions, student loan and scholarship process on her own. For me, this was not as simple. I found myself following the path of my sister for logistical purposes, not necessarily because it was the best path for me. I ended up going to an excellent private university in upstate New York (I lucked out here, I really only chose this particular university because it was about 3 miles from my sister’s university) and graduated with a teaching degree.
At the time, I did what felt right and ultimately my education got me to where I had always imagined I’d be: teaching in a classroom of my very own. In retrospect, I feel like I missed out on a lot of opportunities especially when it comes to finances, scholarships, internships and work experiences. If I had better guidance back in high school, would I be in this much debt? Would I have better experiences on my resume? Would I have joined that club on campus even though it interfered with my Thursday night plans? Would I have taken that class that was recommended, even though it was at 7:30am on Friday mornings? Would I have even gone to that college?
I know that I cannot answer these questions now, but I can tell you that if I am ever in the position to guide a student on their path to college and careers, I will be better prepared. There is research to be done, there are decisions to be made and unfortunately, we do not always know how to do this on our own. Our parents may be unaware, or guidance counselors may have unimaginably large case loads and our youth and inexperience may hinder our efforts to do the research on our own.
Years ago, I needed http://www.choosingmycareer.com. I needed some clear, concise information on what to do, when to do it and how to prepare for the future that I knew I wanted. I knew that I wanted to be a teacher, but I did not have the information readily available to make the best choices for myself. Deciding what you want to do is the first step, figuring out how to get there is the next—so why not be fully prepared?