Please help me figure out potential careers based on my interests and the best paths to obtain them. Psychology, economics, statistics? Market research? Psychometrics?
posted by Malleable to Work & Money (14 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
This got kind of long and I apologize, but I feel like it's all pretty relevant.
I am at the point where I am trying to focus my interests into potential career paths. I have an idea of what I enjoy studying thus far, but have no idea how to translate that into a career after college or what steps I should be taking now so that I don't miss out on crucial opportunities in terms of internships, research experience, etc.
I was originally majoring in psychology, thinking I wanted to go into counseling and help people with mental health issues. I eventually realized that that type of work doesn't really suit me personally, but I still enjoy the analytical/research side of psychology. I was feeling a little unfulfilled with my choice of major, though, knowing that many who study psychology struggle to find good jobs after graduation, and feeling that perhaps I could be spending my time in college more wisely.
Confused and open to suggestions, I consulted with a career counselor at the college who suggested I look into business. I then took some business classes and discovered that I quite like economics, so that's what I've been pursuing. I've been relatively happy with this decision as it seems that it will provide me with a more solid background for being able to obtain a job out of undergrad, while still being something that I enjoy to an extent.
However, I have absolutely no idea what I want out of this degree or what I want in a job after I graduate. I'm approaching my junior year and have to decide on a major, which I thought would be economics, but I'm feeling a little scattered and unsure. So I thought maybe if I could list out what I have discovered about my interests and dislikes so far, perhaps I could find a direction and a plan for myself instead of wandering kind of aimlessly.
- I still find myself with a large interest in psychology. I love learning about the WHY behind behavior, learning about thought processes and the mind and all of that good stuff. I think that's why I have found economics enjoyable as well, as it kind of touches on reasoning and behavior as well but in a more quantitative way.
- I am REALLY enjoying the statistics class I am taking this semester, being able to collect data and turn it into meaningful information, etc. Most of my classmates are groaning at homework problems while I am zipping through them and get excited thinking about the next class meetings. As far as other math... despite my best attempts, calculus frustrates the hell out of me and I would not be at all happy in a field that required large amounts of anything calculus-related.
- I've also always held quite an interest in various research methods, setting up and conducting experiments, etc. I've always loved participating in focus groups and surveys as well. I imagine most people find surveys to be boring, but I've always been fascinated by the process that the researchers must have gone through to come up with specific questions, wondering how many people will answer this way versus that way, how it all will fit together at the end, etc.
- As far as my business classes are concerned... I've already addressed economics. I like the practicality and usefulness of my other business classes such as accounting, but don't see myself making a career out of them. I suppose I am questioning whether business is right for me. Accounting and finance seem to be things that I COULD perform fairly well in, but I think I would ultimately find them dull and unsatisfying. Somewhat business related, though - I've always been a very efficient person, trying to find the best way to do things. I'm also very money-savvy and am great at budgeting, planning, etc. In my free time I get great pleasure out of finding amazing deals on things and then flipping them for profit (i.e. buy textbook for 25c at garage sale ---> resell for $200).
I have been looking into careers that might fit my interests a little better and have found a couple that I will be looking into more, including options in market research and psychometrics. I would love to hear from anyone with advice, suggestions, anecdotes relating to these fields.
I am also looking for suggestions on other options that might be worth exploring, and just general career/major advice. With all of these thoughts swirling around, I am unsure whether or not I am pursuing the right major. I don't see myself going into graduate school for economics as I've heard it's very, very math intensive which I just don't think would be my cup of tea. Obviously major =/= career, but I am feeling very lost with where I am and where I should be heading. I want to make the most out of my experience at college, including internships, relative classes, etc., but that is hard to do when I have no idea what path I should be following or what it takes to get there.