Students today, have a variety of new careers to choose from. Gone are the days when the only conventional careers were to become a doctor and engineer. The subjects of study offered, directly complement the careers they wish to embark on in future. While some people have a clear-cut vision of what they wish to achieve in their lives, there are still some of us, who are working somewhere or the other, but perhaps subconsciously wish to pursue something else. Peer pressure influences us to a great extent, to move away from what we want; and also sometimes figure out where we wish to be.

For starters, online surveys that give career suggestions are pretty accurate. They ask a variety of questions, covering every aspect of your personality, your emotional side, your tactful side, one’s ability to work under pressure etc. However, we can only get an idea of the possible careers we can build on, online surveys are not always correct.

The next step is to go to a career counselor. A one-on-one discussion with a counselor is a lot different from an online survey. Even though the questionnaires may be more or less the same, the counselor personally analyses your case and gives more accurate suggestions. Sometimes, they are pretty useful. I know of people who wished to enter a completely different field before going to a career counselor; who gave them a deeper insight of how their personality matches the profile of a different field. Thereafter, they changed their career plans and are successfully accomplishing all their desired goals.

Even if this does not help, applying for an internship program with an organization relating to your desired career may help. However, it is not that easy to get an internship. There are days when you are neither allowed to enter the office premises, nor does the human resources department agree to accept your resume. It is very unfair as so many students have the potential to benefit the organization with their work. Nonetheless, I believe that every cloud has a silver lining and after putting in sufficient effort towards finding an internship, your luck will definitely strike somewhere.

Internships provide students with opportunities to understand the professional aspects of that particular field. It is a learning experience which widens their horizons; enlightens the interns on aspect that they never knew before, the technical aspects, dealing with all kinds of people etc. Hardworking interns benefit not just themselves, but their employers as well. They acquire a sense of motivation, leadership, oral communication skills, experience, and interpersonal skills. Moreover, professional institutes of higher studies always pay equal attention to work experience, as well as ones academic record. So, having done an internship always adds to the value of one’s mind and greater prospects in the future. Most importantly, I feel, that internships often put interns in a situation where they ask themselves if they are enjoying doing what they do, or not.

In the end, however, we enter the field that we want to, or our parents want us to, or that which is in great demand… the list keeps increasing. Not everyone is lucky enough to arrive at their dream job almost instantly. No knowledge ever goes waste, and it is never too late to pursue one’s dreams. So, on an optimistic note, it may not be possible for everyone to visit career counselors or do internships. With hard work and diligence, success is assured; and when the time is right, I believe, everyone realizes what they are meant to do and will then think of making changes in their careers.

Aditi Ghosh

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