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What do you want to be when you grow up? Think back to how many times you’ve heard that age old question. First at family parties when you’d just started to crawl to the much more recent “are you ever going to get a proper job?” from your drunken uncle; it seems like everyone is ready and waiting for us to make up our minds, fly the nest and become a career success. If only it was a more straightforward answer, such as a doctor, lawyer, magician or astronaut we could be beamed into our ideal working scenario, pull up an expensive leather chair and start living the dream. But sadly, it’s never that easy.
From the little girls playing teacher to the stressed student hunting for a graduate training scheme, the desire to seek out that perfect job has been something which almost all of us will have been dreaming about and hope to find sometime soon. But with the constant pressure around us to decide on our future, are we being too rash with our choices when it comes to employability? With everyone convinced that jobs are few and far between are we at risk of settling for security and the comfort of a weekly wage rather than holding out for that dream job, the one with the complimentary red Ferrari?
At this time of year for most of us there are far too many exams, deadlines and revision guides to cry at and throw out of the window before we even start contemplating what the future holds. That job that makes you want to crawl out of bed and drive to work before the sun shines seems a distant possibility while the exam hall with invigilators swarming like Daleks is an absolute certain.
As students we tend to focus on the here and now; the lecture, the seminar, the official fancy dress code of the Carleton. But occasionally, when we let our minds wander; the bigger picture can seem a daunting, anxiety ridden canvas, illuminating us to the fact that at some time we’ll need to get a wriggle on, be independent and put our glow sticks away. Not all of us often acknowledge this fact, we hide and cower and hope that university will go on forever, or at least long enough for a job to fall into our laps while we have our eyes closed.
Chance and luck are often too easily blamed when a student finds that ideal working scenario, when in reality the roll of the dice is far from the deciding factor. Some students use their time at university as the ideal opportunity to work their little Lancaster hoodies off, leaving no excuse not to be at the front of the pack when it comes to the job hunt. However, despite their level of determination the likelihood of anyone becoming an overnight success the day after you graduate is almost certainly a distant dream.
As worrying as it may seem that you’ll never get to where you ideally want to be, don’t settle for the here and now why there’s still the chance to dream big. Live for the what ifs and the maybes, work hard and you never know, that job with the fancy briefcase could well become a reality.