Freshmen face the pressure of choosing a career


Charlie Hahn

Avery Staaland and Abby Powlowski contemplate decisions about college.

 What career? Which college? Should I consider options other than college? Which academy? What electives?

   These are all questions students ask themselves that bring up feelings of pressure, worry, or even a sense of impending doom about making big career decisions. The College and Career Readiness class is intended to ease freshmen into making such choices.

   On the website, Gina Belli explains that 95% of high school students don’t know what they want to do for a career, but they do have a sort of “dream job” that they push aside because they don’t think they can accomplish it. 25% of kids have parents that have picked out a career for them, and the remaining students have some idea of what they want to do.

   Even though most students claim they know what they want to do, statistics show that they change their minds more than they think.

   Oftentimes that’s all it is. A change of mind, but the fear of regret that resides in the back of most high school students’ minds has a greater impact. Not wanting to pick a career because they are scared that they will regret the choice they made later in life.

   “School has been trying to get me to decide what I want to do since the first grade, and I still don’t know,” said freshman Avery Staaland.

   Few students know exactly what they want to do with their life, and even fewer end up actually pursuing it. And that is in no way a bad thing. Deciding your career is something that will affect your daily life, so that choice definitely matters, but it never has to be permanent. An article by the student success blog at the university of Tulsa stated that roughly 80% of college students change their majors at least two times during college.

   We are taught at a young age that you pick a career and you pretty much do that for the rest of your life, which is not on purpose. It’s just something we observe when we are kids, based on the adults in our lives that already have a day-to-day job. We think they always knew what they wanted to do, so we hold ourselves to those standards and expectations even after finding out most people don’t know what they want to do by the time they’re out of high school.

   That pressure of not wanting to regret their choice causes students to be unsure about what they want to do after they graduate.

   Many freshmen come into high school thinking they won’t have to worry about their career until junior or senior year, but the College and Career Readiness class that all freshmen are required to take diminishes those thoughts. The class is great for preparing kids for college and what comes after, but at the same time lots of students feel sort of rushed to make a decision on whether or not they want to go to college and what they want to major in if they do.

   “Before I came to high school I wasn’t really worried about what I wanted to do afterwards,” said freshman Abby Powlowski, “But now I feel like I should have been thinking about it, because I have to pick the classes as a freshman that will impact the next several years of my life.”