June ,29 2017
T.A.G.S: Determining Your Interests

I am back with the next part to my "Truth About Graduate School" (conveniently abbreviated to T.A.G.S) series. Let's see how 2015 me is getting along.

And the story begins in the winter of 2015. Around that time, I was busily finishing my third year of undergraduate studies and relishing (and contemplating) my upcoming final year of university. Until that point in time, university life was the dream my high school teachers told me it would be. Classes were exciting, social life was booming, and the carefree years of early adulthood were taking shape in wondrous form.

The promise of the future lay at our undergraduate feet, albeit the reality of the real world was beginning to rear its head around the corner. Understandably, it was a scary realization for some. From the time most of my friends and I were young, our teachers told us to plan for our futures. It is not surprisingly that the question of what we wanted to do when we grew up was standard. By 2015, this question became less of a figurative answer than a question which has its asker searching for a viable and practical response. To this day, I am sure that what a person wants out of life changes on a yearly, let alone daily basis. To rush the answer for the sake of providing an answer doesn’t make sense. Nevertheless, I found myself more and more confident that I wanted an idea, if not an answer, of what I wanted to do in the following year when undergraduate school came to an end.

As I've mentioned about before, my primary fields in undergraduate school were history and linguistics. Linguistics provided me with a lot of language skills and pushed me to take on two other languages besides English. I now have Italian and French under my belt. Yay! However, I ruled out the path of speech pathology or phonologist as careers. I knew I didn’t want to stop using my linguistics knowledge (I still utilize it frequently, which I love) but, linguistics was not going to be my primary focus for my future.

Which meant I was turning to history. I have heard many ridiculous jokes and digs about careers in the humanities being a waste of time so many times I am bored even contemplating the thought of them. To say people who succeed in the humanities do not succeed in life is foolish. Every field provides valuable skills applicable to multiple workplace environments. Easy to say I have little time for those doubting people.

I have written about how I have had a great love of museums since I was a young child. Their construction and architecture, their exhibits, anything connected to the mysterious past I read about in history textbooks. It was in museums I decided to put my efforts. I decided I wanted to work in a museum one day. This goal began to shape my entire educational trajectory for the next year and a half. How glorious it was to have a dream!

It was at this time when I knew to accomplish my dream of museum work, I needed a plan. Not a fantastical scheme, but a realistic plan with small achievable goals heading towards my prize. At the basis of my plan, I knew any museum work was most likely going to require some form of graduate schooling. Thus, I planted the seeds for my first goal: get into grad school.

A task which is not necessarily for the faint of heart.


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