Creating a Career Path That You Love
Finding a career path that you truly love can be a challenging task. As a Business student focusing on Marketing and Entrepreneurship, I have had the opportunity to explore different fields through various internships and experiences. While each experience has provided me with valuable skills and knowledge, I have come to realize that my passion lies in working with people in a collaborative and relationship-based environment. This lesson learned came through personal understanding that creating a career path that you’ll love, is one that aligns with your passions and values.
Identify Your Passions and Interests
The first step in creating a career path that you love is to identify your passions and interests. Take some time to reflect on what you love doing in your free time, what you’re naturally good at, and what you feel most fulfilled doing. Consider taking personality tests or career assessments to gain insight into your strengths, values, and work preferences. This will help you identify potential career paths that align with your interests.
It is also equally important to know what you don’t like. After my freshman year, I had an internship at Expedia Group here in Seattle, and it was a great learning experience for me. However, I found that the work was very technical and did not provide me with the opportunity to work with people as much as I would have liked. Although it was an exciting opportunity that was mutually beneficial I felt that my true passions lay elsewhere.
Research Potential Career Paths
Once you have identified your passions and interests, research potential career paths that align with those interests. Look for job descriptions, salary ranges, and education or training requirements for these careers. Talk to people who work in these fields to gain insight into what their day-to-day work looks like and what skills and qualities are required to be successful.
As I researched potential career paths, I visited our career center and engaged with the resources and people there. The career and peer coaches were very helpful in just being able to have a conversation with them and talk about anything I wanted. This helped me learn about different industries and understand the skills and qualifications required for various job roles. I also prioritized networking opportunities and made sure to attend career fairs, company information sessions, and other networking events to expand my connections.
Develop Your Skills and Knowledge
Once you have identified potential career paths, start developing your skills and knowledge in those areas. This could involve taking courses, attending workshops or conferences, or gaining practical experience through internships or volunteer work. This will help you build the skills and knowledge required to succeed in your chosen career. Foster has a plethora of opportunities to develop your skills and knowledge and there is no reason to not take advantage of the bounty of programs and opportunities going to better oneself.
After my sophomore year, I had an internship at American Express in New York City. It provided me with valuable experience in finance. However, I found that the work was very technical and overly financial focused and did not provide me with the opportunity to work with people as much as I would have liked. While I did provide best-in-class analysis and decision support to the organization and honed my financial and analytical acumen, and this opportunity also helped develop my skills and knowledge, I still felt that my true passion lay elsewhere.
Network and Gain Experience
Networking is an important part of creating a career path that you love. Attend industry events, join professional organizations, and connect with people who work in your desired field. This will help you gain insight into the industry, build relationships, and find potential job opportunities.
Networking is definitely one of the most overhyped yet overlooked aspects of business in my opinion. Common popular phrases such as: “It’s who you know” or or “Network equals net worth” or “ It’s now who you know, but rather who knows you” can all be conflicting, cliche, and even off putting, but nonetheless networking is important. I have always tried to network as much as I could and tried to take advantage of every opportunity. Networking is as simple as introducing yourself to a professor, recruiter, and even peer.
Stay Flexible and Open-Minded
Creating a career path that you love is not a one-time event. It requires ongoing reflection, evaluation, and adjustment. Stay flexible and open-minded, and be willing to adjust your plan if necessary. Remember that your passions and interests may change over time, and that’s okay. Embrace new opportunities and continue to learn and grow throughout your career.
Throughout my journey, I have always had a mental plan of how I wanted my life to be, but I also remained open-minded and adaptable to change. I believe that it is important to be flexible and willing to pivot when necessary.
Now, this upcoming summer after my junior year, I will be an incoming Demand Generation Representative Intern at Amazon Web Services. I am excited to explore my passion for sales and relationship-based work. As a people person, I thrive on building connections and trust-based relationships with others.. And as someone who is very collaborative, communicative and enjoys relationship-based work, I am excited to continue exploring my passion for working with people. I am confident that my skills and experiences will enable me to thrive in my role at Amazon Web Services, and I am excited to see where this opportunity takes me.
Creating a career path that you love requires self-reflection, research, planning, and hard work. By identifying your passions and interests, researching potential career paths, developing your skills and knowledge, networking, gaining experience, and staying flexible and open-minded, you can create a career path that aligns with your values and brings you fulfillment and happiness.
Post Written by: Gabriel Navarro, Peer Coach