Planning Your Future Career

Have you recently been asked what do you want to do when you’re older and not been able to answer? Going to college without knowing what you want to study can be scary and stressful. We asked one of our new math teachers, Mrs. Schreiner and alumna Ava Kunze (‘19) a few questions about the challenges they faced when choosing a major. 

Our first question was how did you choose your career path? We ask this question to get an understanding of how other people recognized their strengths and chose a career that goes with them.  

  • Ava Kunze- I was passionate about running health club my senior year and loved the idea of having a healthy lifestyle, so I originally went into my freshman year of college planning on study food science and nutrition. But after much consideration of what all my professors who had just met me said about me, and not actually knowing what I wanted to do with my food science degree. I made the switch and changed my major to business with an option in marketing. Even though the initial change was tough, I don’t regret choosing a degree that perfectly fits my personality. 
  • Mrs. Schreiner- I had a teacher that inspired me to become a high school math teacher. Prior to having this teacher, I had thought about becoming an elementary teacher. 

The second question we asked was what is the biggest change you faced when deciding your career? This was asked to show that there will be challenges, but everyone faces them and can overcome them.

  • Ava Kunze- Everyone had an opinion on what they thought I should do, so it was challenging to hear their opinions but ultimately figure out for myself what I wanted to do.
  • Mrs. Schreiner- It is known that teachers do not make as much as other careers, so I had to make the decision to follow my passion for teaching or go back to school and major in a different field. 

Our third question was did you go into college thinking you would study something different and how/why did your plans change?  We asked this question to show that it is normal to switch majors or be undecided when going into college. Many college students end up changing their major once they get a better understanding of what they want to do for a career.  

  • Ava Kunze- I went into college planning on studying food science. Even while pursuing my business degree, I am still able to take the classes that teach the aspects of health that I enjoy. Having a bit of background and passion in the health industry, but the knowledge and studies of the business world have helped me search for opportunities relating to both fields. It was hard for me to be asked the question ‘what do you want to do after college’ and not being able to give an answer. For me personally, I need a plan and need to know what Im working towards, so switching to business gave me assurance that I knew where my career was headed. While switching majors, I learned that my biggest tool was the resources on campus. I found people that were able to guide me and reassure me that switching majors wasnt out of failure, but rather me figuring out what I wanted long term. 
  • Mrs. Schreiner- When I first started college, I was leaning towards studying communication. I was taking an introduction to a communications course and the teacher talked about starting a communications career and the job opportunities weren’t what I was interested in. It was then when I decided to change what I wanted to study in college and began taking math and teaching courses. 

After interviewing Ava and Mrs. Schreiner, we hope you realize that not knowing what you want to do before going to college or changing your major midway through college is normal. In fact, 80% of college students change their major at least once during their time in college and 75% of students go into their freshman year of college without declaring a major. A few pieces of advice to take away from this interview is to utilize the people around you: ask people in different careers questions about what they like and dislike about their job, talk to counselors and advisors, gather different opinions, and most importantly, do not be afraid to change your mind.