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Home🌌Off Topics🌌Off Topics Main Discussion › Need help with choosing a career path!!!!!
09-08-2006 08:22 PM  14 years ago
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EKIM

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Long Island New York

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Need help with choosing a career path!!!!!
OK, here's my story. I graduated high school 6 years ago. I was an idiot and didn't go to college until last year. (still kicking myself) Since I left HS, I've been a truck driver...not something I want to do for the rest of my life. I work 6 days a week and can only go to school part time at night. So quitting my job and banging out a bachelors or associates degree is what I want to do , but not an option. I am currently at a pace of about 10 credits per semester and I have 20 in so far with a 3.9 gpa.

I am currently in school for electrical engineering, But I have been hearing that not only is it an extremely tough degree, but it may not be worth it compared to other careers. I'm good at it when I'm forced to do it, but I'm starting to second-guess my choice of profession as I'm not crazy about it. I spoke to a few people in the field and they told me that they worried for me... I have just started my DC circuits and calculus classes earlier this week. So I'm not that far into yet.

I have also looked up the possibility of an aviation degree, but its 3x the cost and I'm paying for college out of pocket.(different school) and the airlines are in the toilet bowl right now. So a commercial pilot is out. But what about air traffic control, cargo management etc....

I tried to be a cop but I got eliminated on the oral psych. towards the very end because of some difficulty I had with my mother in the past when I was 16-17. I'm 24 now. So thats out unless I want to be NYPD for 25 k a year....

Like I said I'm 24 and I'm engaged to my girlfriend who happens to be a highschool english teacher..(kind of ironic she would pick the class clown) I want to make as much money as possible (doesn't everyone) but my goal is 100k+ a year after I put some time in. From the looks of things, a Bachelors degree is required no matter what field to make this kind of $$.

If you have read this far and survived this brutally long post, maybe you are willing to offer me some advise. What carrer path would offer this kind of pay and job security that I don't have to be the presidents brother to get into? I'm open to ALL suggestions (within reason) I want to get this done and over with so I can start my future career asap. But it looks as If I will get my 4 year degree in 10 years...
*******Mike********
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09-08-2006 08:37 PM  14 years ago
bluesjunky57

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banished to the kiddie table

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just become a bumjusta slave to the rhythm
long distance Texas Renegade Rotorz member
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09-08-2006 08:53 PM  14 years ago
shaggy

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USA

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The main question you need to ask yourself is what do you love to do? Money aside. And I don't mean be a professional football player when you are only 5'6, 135 lbs. I mean realistically something you could see yourself enjoying everyday for the rest of your life (kind of like you new fiancee). Because you may think you want to make 100K a year, but if you hate what you do everyday, 100K is not worth it.

And trust me, I know from experience.

I know what I am good at, computer graphics. But I won't be making 100K (what I would like to make as well) living in Alabama doing this. So I got out and got into sales (also have a degree in Sales/Marketing).

Spent 2 years learning everything I could to be the bebst sales person and actually got pretty good at it. Ranked number 2 in my region with a Fortune 500 company.

As you can tell, I am not there anymore. It wasn't worth it. I quit because in the back of mind, no matter how much I made, I was not fulfilled. So I put my notice in and left, got back in Computer Design and I am loving it! My wife and I are happier, less stress. Life is good.

I wish you the best and remember, money is nice but it isn't ecverything. And it sure as hell does not buy happiness. Just look at all the people in the news every single day that have more money than they know what to do with and they still are not TRULY happy.

Brooks
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09-08-2006 09:05 PM  14 years ago
jimco

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east texas

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Check out air-conditioning-refrigeration tech school. If you are really good with mechanics, and have the ability to learn the refrigeration business, sky is the limit. Very technical field and requires an inquisitive mind combined with the mechanical stuff. Start your own business and live happily ever after. If you were going foe electrical, you must have what it takes.Honey, where's the check book, it's Fedex again
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09-08-2006 09:32 PM  14 years ago
EvoFlight50

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Southbury, CT

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i know it sounds cliche' but like shaggy says ask yourself what you would really like to do ... think of something that you would wake up and want to go to ....

i to screwed up in h.s and after h.s i worked in the trades for 3 1/2 years ... i couldnt see myself doing that for the rest of my life ... so i now decided to go back to school and get my degree in aviation to become a proffesional pilot ... i've wanted to do this since i was a little kid ... there are more than just commercial airlines .. there are private charters and shipping as well ... and many people will be retiring and those spots will need to be filled .... when my father was my age he wanted to work with computers and everyone told him it was a waste he wont find a job ... now he makes a ton of money ... so dont listen to other people ... if you'd really like to fly go for it

if you decide you dont want to gamble on it i read an article in one of my aviation magazines the FAA will be hiring tons of ATC's in the next 10 years but you have to be younger than 33 before you start you're job if your over 33 by time you start they wont take you

one more bit of advice i would try to take more than 10 credits a semester if you're planning to transfer colleges look at the degree of difficulty of you're previous college schedule heavily and while you do have a great 3.9 gpa that isn't exceptionally hard if your only taking 3 classes

with 10 credits you're not considered full time ... if you can get another class and be full time with that GPA you can get into the honors society and on the presidents list and you will get many scholarships ... on top of that there is also a lot of financial aid and student loans which you wont have to pay until you get out of school and get a job
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09-08-2006 09:55 PM  14 years ago
sandals4me2

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Anthem, Arizona

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Open a Hooters.No these are not my sandals, Im just keeping them warm. 08/23/60-05/26/06 RIP Bro.
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09-08-2006 10:26 PM  14 years ago
EKIM

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Long Island New York

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You guys are right and I completely agree with doing something you will be happy with and not just focusing on the $$. The two things that I always wanted to be were either a cop or a pilot. The pilot thing seems to be somewhat of a gamble and I don't know if I can get a bachelors in aviation and land a job in the alloted amount of time. I know its a 4 year degree but I can't afford to quit my job and get a bs part time job, I wish I could. I can cut back to 5 days a week, but I am limited to night classes only. My only day off is wednesday now, But if I take my other day I will have Sunday too. There is a flight school nearby that is qualified for the faa courses. (dowling)But time is a huge issue. I don't go out very often because with my current job I'm up at 3am and not home until about 3 pm. My other time is filled with studying and occasionally tinkering on my heli which I only fly once a week if the weather is nice. I may go down that police road again but I have to put more time between my past and the present to qualify at a decent agency. Geez this sure is a pickle I could have avoided if I just went to school when I should have!! *******Mike********
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09-08-2006 10:30 PM  14 years ago
sandals4me2

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Anthem, Arizona

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Photogaraphy is a good field if your any good. No money in it but look at all those memories.

If I could of done it all over again, I would of been a Surf Punk for life
No these are not my sandals, Im just keeping them warm. 08/23/60-05/26/06 RIP Bro.
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09-08-2006 10:33 PM  14 years ago
EvoFlight50

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Southbury, CT

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http://www.faa.gov/jobs/job_opportu...0505_ATCS_b.pdf

check out this link if your interested in ATC ... i may be reading it wrong but the way it seems is you dont need a full 4yr degree to work in ATC ... if you have been holding a job you can substitute years of work for education ...


i was looking at going to Dowling College or Embry Riddle ... is Dowling a good college? I've read about it on the internet but i dont really know much about it ... and just as a thought im not sure but doesnt Dowling have an ATC certificate program?
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09-08-2006 10:33 PM  14 years ago
Topher

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Rochester, Michigan

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The great thing about engineering degrees is that they open you up to a very braud field. I have known EE and ME graduates that are in everything from PR to engineering itself. I know quit a few engineerings that have masters and easily pull 100k a year. But like said above just find something your good and like and then just do it. Fortunatly I learned that at an early age. But a word of advice, stay away from the auto industry.
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09-08-2006 10:50 PM  14 years ago
EKIM

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Long Island New York

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Dowling is very good for flight school. I live maybe 10 miles away from the Shirley campus (exit 68 off of LIE) They are one of 14 schools in the U.S. that have the FAA certificate program.

http://dowling.edu/school-aviation/
*******Mike********
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09-09-2006 12:17 AM  14 years ago
helo_chris

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goodlettsville, tn

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Please think about this statement for a moment. I wish I had someone to tell me this..

From as early as I can remember I loved airplanes. I started studying aerodynamics and physics in the 5th grade. My dream was to be a test pilot and ultimately go on to be an astronaut. My idols were John Glenn and Chuck Yeager. I knew everything about the space program, I could tell you every astronaut from the Apollo up until the Shuttle program, including b-days. My mom would let me skip school to see the Shuttle launches on TV. I read everything i could find about aviation and the space program. I was home watching the day the Challenger disaster happened. After that everyone knows what happened, hard times along with everyone questioning the risk of space exploration led to NASAs budget being slashed. So, fast forward a couple years and I am starting high school, I want to be an astronaut. All I heard was "you dont want to do that, NASA is going to be shut down eventually, you will never have a future." So eventually I listened, ended up not even going to college. Now look, instead of a launch every couple of years they have one every couple of months. I wish I hadnt listened.

Moral of the story, do what you love, follow your dream no matter how far out of reach it seems. And dont worry about the money, do what you love and the money will come to you.
"There is a fine line between cutting edge and bleeding edge.."
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09-09-2006 01:38 AM  14 years ago
scatbass

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Hiram, GA

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What helo_chris said is right on. The other thing I would piggyback onto that is this - do not beat yourself up for not going to college!! While college is the "accepted" way, it is not the only way, and it is not for everybody. The most important things that you learn will be learned in real life, not in a classroom. The most important thing you can have is will and determination. It's the quitters that resign themselves to minimum wage jobs simply because everybody tells them that they cannot succeed without a college education. All college will really do for you is open some doors...yes, it may make some opportunities a little more readily available, but not going will not put them out of reach.

That said, I never went to college. I'm currently 33 and making pretty damn close to 6 figures in the IT industry, completely self taught. I recognize that I am an anomoly, and I do not take my position for granted, but I also recognize that I am proof that it can be done.

Do what you like, and whatever you do - like what you do!! Have a passion for your work no matter what it is. The moment you view it as "just a job", it's over.


Mike
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09-09-2006 01:55 AM  14 years ago
EvoFlight50

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Southbury, CT

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i can come up with a pretty good example ...

there is this guy that lives in my town ... as crazy as it sounds every since he was younger he was always into landscaping ... he just caught onto mowing lawns and planting grass i guess ... so when he was in H.S he starting his own business cutting lawns after school ... now he does much of all the landscaping in my county and the two surrouding counties ... you see his trucks wherever you go ... needless to say the guy is now filthy rich ... and im sure he didnt get to much praise when he told his parents he wanted to grow up and cut lawns
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09-09-2006 02:12 AM  14 years ago
Kraken

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Phoenix, AZ

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I had a long talk with a gentleman that I highly respect a few years ago. He explained to me that it's not necessarily what your degree is in...just the fact that you have it.

Basically, having your Bachelor's Degree proves that you're willing to set a goal, deal with all the bullsh|t involved, and do whatever it takes to accomplish your goal. As a side note, it also proves that you're trainable.

This guy was the Director of Operations at a communications company. Obviously a highly technical business, etc. etc. etc. At the very end, he asked me to guess what his degree was in. I was wrong by a mile.

It was Philosophy.

Whatever the goal you choose...just follow it through. You'll be fine by the end.
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09-09-2006 02:35 AM  14 years ago
helo_chris

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goodlettsville, tn

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The other thing I would piggyback onto that is this - do not beat yourself up for not going to college!!
Exactly!! Not that I dont plan to but I still havent and I am 30. About 5 years ago I left the retail world behind and got into IT. Now I am a Network Admin making very good money.

Evo, I know one of those guys to. He started mowing lawns the year he got his drivers license for spending money. By the time we graduated it was a full time job and now he runs one of the most successful landscaping businesses in the area. Not sure if he went on to college or not.

Also Kraken is right, one of the Engineering managers where I work has his degree in business administration.
"There is a fine line between cutting edge and bleeding edge.."
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09-09-2006 09:35 AM  14 years ago
Ed Moore

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West Sussex, UK

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This man makes a good point. Certainly 'never settle' is now tattoo'd into the back of my eyelids.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D1R-jKKp3NA
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09-09-2006 04:00 PM  14 years ago
rmschmidt

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Tooele, Utah

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You’re a Truck Driver? Cool, that’s how I started. Get in with a large Company like Fed-Ex, Con-Way, ABf and so on. Top scale drivers make around $70,000 a year. They will also pay for your schooling and have excellent benefits. I myself moved up from driver to management without College, as I was tired of driving! Never let your CDL expire, you may need to fall back on it someday.

Remember some of the top 10 Billionaires and millionaires never went to college or dropped out. I would have preferred to finish college, as I think it would have been an easier route to move up the ranks.
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09-09-2006 04:35 PM  14 years ago
dgshaffer

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New Jersey

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Holy Crap Ed! Thanks for posting that link. Truer words have never been spoken.

Stay Hungry! Stay Foolish!

I've been in the sheet metal manufacturing business since 1977 starting as a welder. Everyday brings a new challenge and I love to create things from nothing. I've found I'm good at it as well. I now own my own business after having 14 different jobs in the same field. I've always moved on looking for something more interesting or challenging. I became an honorary engineer in my field and was hired here in NJ as a Senior Design engineer for a semi conductor equipment manufacturer. Shortly after moving here I decided it was time to get back to doing what I love to do, getting dirty and burning metal. I'm doing very well and have made up to 250,000 in a single year doing what I love to do.

Find something you love to do, you'll naturally become very good at it and people will throw money at you!

As Steve Martin said "I get paid for doin this!"
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09-09-2006 05:36 PM  14 years ago
T.J. Kong

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Northern California

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Aviation has been in a slow decline for many years. This decline was made significantly worse after 9-11. If your dream is to fly, my advise would be find another job that you enjoy and fly recreationally. If you go down to the local airport, you will find that the aircraft owners are in construction, real estate, etc. I hate to pop any bubbles, but I've run into quite a few pilots flying for the commuters who feel that they have made a mistake.

However, I have a friend who is a controller at SFO and he really loves his job. I know little about ATC as a career, but it might be worth looking into. Do realize that many towers are being privatized. Make sure that you read more than the propaganda to get the full picture. For instance, the airline publications will show all the current hiring (at the commuter level) but will not mention the thousands of pilots still on furlough (at the majors.)
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