By Kelly Martin, Toppel Peer Advisor
Last night during an outreach presentation I was giving for Toppel, I was asked a very interesting question. The girl asked me how to deal with the “issue” that even though she was a psychology major, every summer she had interned for a fashion or magazine company because it was something she was really interested in. She was concerned that her resume didn’t look like the resume of someone studying psychology and she was preparing to apply to grad school for psychology.
This question made me sad in a way; this girl was concerned that by pursuing something she was really passionate about she was maybe short changing another aspect of her life that she also cared about. My first response was that despite the fact that interning at a magazine or in the fashion industry may not seem directly relatable to psychology, at the end of the day, any internship or job experience teaches you invaluable skills that are applicable anywhere. So on your resume, even if you have a lot of experiences that may not seem to relate to your field of study on the surface, think about everything you learned at those experiences and you are bound to find skills that are universally applicable.
But the question continued to stick in my head. Since thinking about it more, I think I would add to that response. This girl was clearly passionate about the fashion industry, but also passionate about her studies in psychology as she was hoping to apply to grad school to pursue it. I would encourage her to think about those passions and how she can find a way to make them intersect.
I recently read an article on LinkedIn about a woman who had been in the marketing field as VP for a long time. But eventually, with the help of a career counselor, she reassessed what she was really passionate about, things that had occurred in her personal life, and realized she wanted a change, and ended up working for a non-profit for widows and widowers. She herself had become a widow 5 years prior, and felt a strong drive to helping others like herself, and as she now declares, she has her “dream job”.
I think we often worry too much about what we shouldbe studying and what jobs we should get, when we should really think about what we want. If you’re doing something you actually care about, you will inevitably be happier. I think everyone has a dream job, we just often think it’s not attainable because we don’t have the right degree, or the right qualifications. But if you really assess your experiences, and combine those with your passion, it’s worth pursuing that dream job. You never know, you might just find it.