How Does Life Change In Your Twenties?

By Selena Jones

So, you’ve graduated. Congratulations! You’re quite possibly in your twenties – now what? You may already be noticing some changes. While half your friends are still getting drunk every night, you’re wondering if you can even hack one night of birthday drinks and cursing those hangovers. Midweek cocktails are firmly out of the question for you! Or perhaps your friends are having babies and the appropriate response is no longer to panic and ask “what on earth are you going to do?!” – they’re actually happy about it, and you are, too.

Your twenties are a definitive decade.

Your twenties are arguably a definitive decade. You’re still young enough to experiment, make mistakes, and yet you are starting to get some real responsibilities, too. Now, nobody’s saying you have to settle down, make compromises, whatever. But you’re learning that sometimes you have the choice to, and that’s okay. It’s an exciting time, one where you have the world at your feet, your career is dawning and you’re most likely mixing with a different set of people, perhaps in a new place. Suddenly, getting a house, starting a family and all of these ‘grown up’ things don’t seem so ‘forever never’ – they’re suddenly potentially your daily reality. Of course some things will be hard to adjust to, others will be easier. Everyone is different, but that’s part of living.

So, what do these different stages in your life actually mean? I’ve touched on families – you’re possibly thinking about starting your own. With today’s mounting debts and rising costs pricing a lot of people out of any huge milestones, it’s often advisable for a lot of people in this situation to put their career first. But you’re also probably learning that sometimes, things just happen the way they happen, and that’s fine as well.

What about travel? So many Americans don’t even own a passport, and yet there are literally hundreds of countries out there, waiting to be explored. Travel no longer has to mean road tripping down to Miami for WOOHOO Spring Break, because sadly, not many of us in a 9-5 are afforded that privilege anymore! But there are plenty of other options, from taking time out to commit to backpack, or learning a new language or culture by actually working abroad. The lucky few, perhaps those already settled in a two income household, may even consider investing in a holiday home on a Spanish island somewhere, like in Tenerife, which is cheaper than you’d think, or perhaps a luxury property in Dubai! The world is your oyster.

Of course, money doesn’t totally make the world go round. There are loads of things you’ll likely change in your twenties – some people calm down more, while others decide to throw caution into the wind! No matter who you are, what you’re doing or how old – or young – you feel, different areas alter in your mind over the years. So, even though you’re a grown up, you never have to stop chasing your dreams – you just have to adapt them!


To land your dream job, you’ve got to have a strong GPA.  Order your copy of The Secrets of Top Students today!

Advertisements

Traveling for Students: Why It’s Important

By Selena Jones.  

Here in America, we can be somewhat guilty of ignoring the world around us. It’s true – up to 70% of Americans don’t actually own a passport, and it’s somewhat shocking. In other parts of the world, ‘Gap Years’ are common – they’re basically months taken outside of study to go abroad. There are a few options, and many young people go before they even start college or university. Others go after they graduate. The experiences will differ widely, but their purpose remains the same. The individual will come home more independent, more cultured and potentially they will even pick up skills that will be valuable in any workplace.

Continue reading

5 Careers for Introverts (Guest Post)

By Jep Barroga.  Jep is a freelance writer for a Malaysian personal finance portal, writing blog posts like the perks of working from home. If he’s not busy writing, you can find him reading articles from Cracked.com and listening to alternative music.

It’s not easy landing your dream job, especially if you’re the timid, shy type—or an introvert, so to speak. Unlike extroverts who have no problems mingling with other people and networking with fellow professionals, introverts are often not so adept at the social skills required to build bigger networks of their own, since most of them have reserved personalities.

Sometimes it can be hard to be a solitary thinker.

Sometimes it can be hard to be a solitary thinker.

I’m an introvert myself and I’ve found my calling as a freelance writer and social media specialist, which allows me to work remotely for clients from anywhere around the world. There are lots of jobs that are best suited for your personality; jobs that can give you the stimulation you crave and allow you to hone your creativity. The following are some ideal careers for introverts:

If you love numbers

Financial Analyst
This job requires you to evaluate a wide scope of data related to business trends, stocks, bonds, and financial statements. Creating financial reports is also important in this type of work.

Accountant
Accountancy is perfect for introverts who have a passion for numbers. Accountants are mostly left alone in their own cubicles, at their computers, where they must evaluate and decode piles of documents. This type of job requires you to spend most of your time dealing with data and calculations. Most days, accountants do what they need to do with few distractions. Interaction with other people is minimal, although you’ll occasionally have to meet with clients or supervisors.

If you have a passion for the written word

Writer
This is one of the most popular types of job for introverts nowadays—particularly those who love to read and write. For people who have a passion for writing, being a website content or technical writer is ideal. This job may sometimes require you to be skilled at marketing. Some companies even offer telecommuting benefits as long as you’re able to meet deadlines.

If you love science

Medical Technician
This job is ideal for introverts who want to go into the medical field. It requires you to collect lab samples, analyze the records, and work behind the scenes to deal with laboratory processes, x-rays, and other test results. You may have to report to doctors, nurses and other professionals about the patient’s lab results, but you will spend most of your time in the laboratory.

If you love art

Graphic Designer
This is a skill-based career. This type of work requires you to spend hours at your desk and computer and formulate a cool image or infographics for clients. You can specialize in areas such as web design or web architecture, which will help you express your ideas digitally, if not on paper or canvas. The great thing about this job is that you only meet with clients and supervisors to have your submissions reviewed or to get feedback on your work.

“Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life,” as the great Confucius said. The jobs mentioned are some ideal careers for introverts. However, if your passions lie elsewhere, you may try to improve your communication skills and minimize your timid traits so that it will be easier for you to get hired in the profession you want.


For a limited time, get The Secrets of Top Students ebook for $2.99!

The Top 4 Ways To Work On Your Career While Still In School (Guest Post)

By Alex Pejak.
Alex is an economist currently working on a few projects in Australia. She is passionate about market research and career development. She is also interested in topics related to project management and business IT.

As you study it’s always an excellent idea to keep the next step in mind. What will you do once you graduate? If you’re like most students, you’re planning to find a job and start a career. Yet we live in a very competitive economy and many students are finding that careers do not simply appear out of thin air upon graduation. The best jobs go to those who began preparing long before it came time to find one. To make sure you land the kind of position you’re hoping to get, it’s a good idea to start working on your career now, while you’re still in school.

In general, the most important and most effective ways of setting yourself up for post-graduation success involve building up your skills and experience in the field you’d like to work in. This gives you confidence in your choice of career, and shows employers that you’re ready. Also, the experience you gain during your studies will ensure you know the industry’s leaders, language, and trends, which will help you choose the best employer for you rather than finding yourself looking for the one with the largest career-fair booth.

1. Do The Best Job You Can  

The simplest method of setting yourself up for a smooth transition to the working world is simply putting in the effort during school. By being diligent, getting good grades, and participating both on and off campus, you start attracting fans and building up a network… people who will be eager to help you succeed later.

Sometimes, you may even find the organizations you volunteered at will want to hire you right out of school. Compared with sending out hundreds of CVs and sitting through dozens of interviews, this can be a highly appealing proposition.

In other cases, you’ll find your experiences mean that club leaders, peers, and professors will give you glowing references, and will help to mentor you as part of their own legacy. The resulting experiences will make for wonderful stories in job interviews, and your accomplishments will look excellent on your CV and in cover letters.

2. Intern or Volunteer In Your Time Off         

Often, the classic “student jobs” like bartending or retail have no connection to the career you want to pursue later. There are few better ways to explore an interesting-sounding career, on the other hand, than interning or volunteering in a related position. Make a point of spending your summers and breaks in positions, even if they’re unpaid, which have a connection to the career you want to pursue.

Since applying to internships is nearly identical to applying for a regular job — you’ll require a good quality CV and cover letter, and you may need to show language or computer certificates — the process will also provide valuable practice for the working world later.

3. Go Abroad    

Interning or volunteering abroad is a little more complicated, to be sure. However, expanding your horizons and learning to work in a different culture is always a valuable personal development experience and highly attractive to employers. Showing experience abroad on your CV will convey to potential employers that you can work well in nearly any situation, that you’re more well-rounded and balanced than most other candidates. This marks you as a candidate for leadership and management from day one.

Better still, going abroad is not as difficult as it sounds. While you will likely require translated copies of your CV, cover letter, references, certificates, and such, online translation makes this fast and easy. Additionally, once you’ve found a position in a foreign country, the firm will likely have resources to help you arrange a visa, accommodation, and the like.

4. Pick Your Classes Wisely   

Last but not least, though it may seem obvious to some, your choice of classes is an excellent way to work on your career as you study. You can use your classes as a way of learning about the current trends, major players, and language of the fields that interest you. Look at which classes have a practical application to your field of choice, and focus on those. Particularly in business classes, the materials you read may be the same things that shaped the management ideals of the companies you will go work for.

Conclusion

In many respects, the best ways of preparing yourself for a future career as you study are the simplest: put in as much work as you can, take every chance you get to gain hands-on experience in the field. The exception, studying or working abroad, is a little more involved but also one of the most rewarding. In fact, there’s a good argument to be made that going abroad is so beneficial because there are hurdles involved — most candidates you’ll be competing against won’t bother. Keep this principle in mind as you study, too. By looking for opportunities that most people can’t be bothered to take, it’s easy to give yourself a big advantage.

The first step to getting a good career is getting good grades in school.  The Secrets of Top Students can show you how!

Landing a Dream Job in Wildlife Tourism (Guest Post)

By Dianna Terry. Dianna is a marine biology PhD candidate working for an ocean conservancy organization.

Kneeling in roadside sand to identify a lion’s pugmark, interpreting a humpback’s tail-slap for a ship full of camera-wielding whale-watchers, collecting a blood sample from an ailing goose in a marshland refuge—a career in the wildlife-tourism industry is often rife with adventure. For anyone who loves animals and wild ecosystems, it can be a deeply fulfilling dream job.

wildlife careers

Do you love animals? Consider a career in wildlife tourism.

Wildlife tourism, though, covers a broad spectrum of specific careers. You could become a safari guide for a travel company, which might be the job that most automatically comes to mind. But you might also be a field researcher, studying populations of wild animals in national parks and other protected lands that attract wildlife-watchers in droves. Maybe you’ll don a doctor’s coat to ensure a population of endangered animals is secure against devastating disease—including those potentially transmitted by humans in ecotourism situations. Perhaps you’ll tackle another aspect of the field by regulating industry practices with an eye toward sustainability through a group such as the International Ecotourism Society.

Zoological parks also often fall under the umbrella, and not only because the animals on display serve as educational ambassadors for their wild brethren: Many leading zoos are also heavily involved in conservation work. The Milwaukee County Zoo, for example, has long tended one of North America’s biggest colonies of captive bonobos, and works to secure wild populations of these rare great apes in equatorial Africa, according to BonoboConservation.com.

Education

Pursuing an academic track in biological sciences gives you a comprehensive, technical understanding of how animals are put together and how they function in relation to their environment. Mastering these fundamentals of physiology and ecology is crucial to many aspects of conservation work.

To some, wildlife biology or zoology might appear “softer” academic routes than physics or chemistry: A trotting wolf, after all, seems easier to understand than the invisible latticework of an organic compound or the complicated equations accounting for the behavior of the universe. But biologists familiarize themselves with many levels of ecological organization and process, from an animal’s physiological requirements to its larger-scale interactions with other species, the seasonal and long-term patterns of its movements in the context of different habitats, and its response and susceptibility to climatic fluctuations.

Beyond a wildlife-biology or ecology program, a degree or certificate in veterinary studies can also usher you into ecotourism work by giving you the tools to diagnose and treat diseases affecting wild or captive animals. For example, the Veterinary Technician Program through PennFoster.edu exposes you to everything from basic tenets of biology and medical mathematics to intensive courses on animal anatomy and nutrition. When assessing potential veterinary curriculums, keep an eye out for accreditation by institutions such as the American Veterinary Medical Association.

An undergraduate degree or certification in wildlife ecology, conservation biology, or some related field may be sufficient to land professional work in wildlife tourism—particularly when combined with plenty of practical experience. However, further education is often mandatory for high-level research and managerial positions, as NationalZoo.si.edu explains.

Interning and Volunteering

As with any line of study, volunteering or interning can be enormously beneficial. Beyond making you more attractive to a hiring committee, it provides a better sense of exactly what kind of position and what area of focus most interests you. Jobs working with charismatic megafauna like elephants and tigers can be highly competitive; volunteering as a data-cruncher or field assistant gives you a taste of the drama while also improving your resume.

Inquire with zoos, wildlife refuges, veterinary clinics, national parks, ecotourism companies, and other organizations to find out about volunteer and internship opportunities. If you’re lucky and committed, you might even land yourself a direct job opportunity out of the deal.


To land your dream job, you’ve got to have a strong GPA.  Order your copy of The Secrets of Top Students today!

Deciding to Become a Teacher (Guest Post)

By Fiona Mayberry.  Fiona loves teaching others, and loves that the internet allows her to reach different people every week. She currently writes about education policies and degree certification processes.

If you’re in high school or college right now, you’re probably putting a lot of thought into what you want to do with your life. It’s possible that the most influential people in your life have been teachers, which might inspire you to become a teacher yourself. Before you commit to that career path though, there are a few things to consider:

Source of Motivation

If you want to become a teacher to change people’s lives, that’s wonderful. Just know that you won’t feel like you’re making an impact every day. If you’re inspired by seeing small improvements in a student’s work, or knowing you made someone’s day better, then you’ll be fine. If, however, you expect to see large results quickly, you might go through long periods of time where you feel frustrated. It’s important to know yourself and have realistic expectations.

Hours

Some people are attracted to the teaching profession because they like the idea of working the same schedule every day. 7-3 Monday through Friday seems pretty cushy, and the idea of summer breaks is appealing as well. But teachers often have to take their work home to grade papers and create lesson plans. They also have after-school events such as staff meetings, parent conferences, and continual learning opportunities. You’ll work a lot more than just classroom hours. Also, depending on your financial situation, you might have to teach summer courses or find an additional source of income for vacation times. Keep all this in mind and know that class times are not going to be your only work times.

Do you have what it takes to be a teacher?

Do you have what it takes to be a teacher?

State Requirements

Every state has its own requirements for teaching certifications.  If you’re planning on moving, make sure you know the requirements for the state you’re considering. Certain areas require different tests and even prerequisite degrees and courses in order to take the certification tests. Classroom experience is also a qualification that varies state-to-state.

Likewise, states all have different laws when it comes to what is taught in the classroom. Look into how much input teachers in your target area have over what they teach. Look at the current proposed bills affecting education so that you know not only the current classroom atmosphere, but what it’s likely to be like in the future.

Once you take all these things into consideration, you will be more prepared to make an informed decision. Will a classroom environment allow you to thrive? Is teaching the way for you to fulfill your life goals? If so, start looking at online teacher communities, and talk with those in the field. The more you see of what teaching is actually like, the more prepared you will be to have a positive impact on student lives.


Want to improve your GPA?  Order a copy of The Secrets of Top Students today!