Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Unsolicited random advice

Because it is back to school time and I see/hear people talking about college all around me.

  • If you don't know what you want to do with your life, go to college, I know that's NOT what a lot of people want to hear. 
  • If you know what you want to do, go to college or trade school and work towards that professional goal, either through your schooling, and/or outside school depending on what it is. 
  • Unless you are absolutely certain you want to and can do (ie have contacts/experience already) something nontraditional go to college. Even so most fields have some sort of trade/higher education that is helpful, it's very hard to get away from. 
  • If you know what you want to do AND already have your hands all up in those pies (technical speak, I'm all about it) stick with the school. 
  • If your schooling gets in the way of your hands in pieing (yes that's a term, or it is now at least) find out how much experience vs education mean in that field, and not just in your area, you never know things might have a better/worse outlook away from home, then make your decision of whether to cut back/stop one or the other. 

I did the last bit and came to a point where school was holding me back so I quit school. I have a 2 year degree in Zoology and was another 2 1/2 years into my bachelors. At that point I had almost 4 years of experience with exotic animals, I was extremely, I cannot stress that enough, lucky to have the opportunities I had. This is NOT typical in the exotic animal field. School AND working from the bottom is the normal. For me though if I wanted to continue school I would have had to quit my jobs and lose the experience. With the references and experience I had I was pretty confident in my ability to get a job elsewhere, not locally though. The local zoos are world famous and I had no illusions that I would be able to get a job at one of the local zoos. I was actually pretty confident quitting the jobs and sticking with school would hinder my abilities to get a similar hands on job like I was currently doing. Basically, if I finished school, I would have been starting at the low level of no animal contact jobs and need to work my way up. Not that I would be guaranteed a hands on job with just my experience I had at the time BUT I would not be giving up the experience and I would be adding years of experience to my resume. It's almost 7 years later and I still think I made the right choice for me. I don't work a lot, mostly by choice at this point (whole other story), and I make next to nothing, which I knew was going to be a reality. I work in a nontraditional way in an already nontraditional (as in 9-5 type) job.That being said I am 'stuck' where I am right now because I do not have a degree or experience in any other field. Good news, I do not want to work in any other field (and more of an issue are the tattoos and piercings than the schooling at this point and you know my complete lack of desire to ever have a job like that).

This has been a rambling post of unsolicited advice from me based on my experience. Thank you and goodnight (it's only 6pm I am not going to bed).

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