Annie Lane: Don’t rule out a career too soon

Published 5:48 pm Tuesday, January 3, 2023

Dear Annie: Kids today are pushed too early to make career decisions. The first two years of college are a good time to take different courses to see where one’s interest lies. A major can easily be declared as a junior, and ample credits can be accumulated in that discipline in the last couple of years.

I took a career test in school that said I should be a forest ranger. Instead, I became a nurse with a business degree. One son thought his major would be math, but he ended up with an English degree. A daughter initially failed a Spanish test, but she graduated with a major in Spanish and linguistics. Another son has a degree in psychology, but he is building houses today. A grandson who struggled with math all through school is getting his masters in financial counseling.

We push too hard and too soon, and few people going to college are ready to make decisions about their future without further life experience. Many people change careers more than once in their adult lives.

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Career counseling has its place. A neighbor’s son was dissatisfied after the degree he chose and the job it led to after college graduation. He then became a successful car salesman. We seem to be rushing kids into adulthood and perhaps inappropriate decision-making way too soon. The adult brain isn’t fully formed until around age 25. It’s OK to take time to decide.

— Stressed-Out Students

Dear Stressed-Out Students: There is much to be said for having a well-rounded education and not specializing at too young an age. It is very insightful of you to celebrate the fact that so many of what appeared to be your children’s failings ended up, one way or another, becoming some of their greatest accomplishments. Being patient and kind with ourselves will make us more patient and kind with students, allowing them to live the full experience of life.

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Dear Annie: Guardianships save lives! With a guardianship, anyone can be confined in a safe environment. Using their financial information, i.e., bank statements, credit card statements, jail records, etc., showing where they are spending their money will be used to prove they are unable to handle their life. The probate division of your local courthouse has names of professional guardians who can be assigned if no one in the family is willing and capable. Guardianships will be plenary, which is for personal care and financial, or general, which will be for one or the other. They can be dissolved when the person has passed the crisis. Lawyers for the person and guardian will be expensive, but people must make the decision of saving money or trying to save a life. The Veterans Administration covers costs for veterans and knows everything you need to help someone. It saved my son, and now he is healthy and very happy, thanks to the Veterans Administration.

— Happy, Relieved ! Mom.

Dear Relieved Mom: Thank you for this information.

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