Career Path Thoughts For College Students/New Graduates

As a college student/recent graduate do you have any clue what you will be doing for a living in 10 years? I tell myself that I do but realistically anything can happen and only God knows what the future holds. The reason for me starting off the article with that question today is because Trent at The Simple Dollar wrote an interesting post yesterday where he touched on scalable and stable careers. The article really got me thinking about my own career path and what other people my age are doing, so I figured I would jump in with my own thoughts on the matter.

Just to give you guys a quick recap, a stable career is one where you work for a company that pays you an hour wage or salary in return for your services. A scalable career is one where you are usually self-employed and your income potential is directly related to how hard you’re willing to work. A 9-5 job would fall under the former, while a small business owner would fall under the latter category.

My greatest fear? I can not imagine going any period of time without a stable income. I know that a scalable career has the potential to earn you a substantially higher income but there is also the fear that you could go a period of time without any money coming in. I love being able to keep a budget where I plan to save X amount of money every year and plan a few vacations throughout the year. With a scalable career I fear that I would not be able to plan my savings and I would certainly not be able to plan a vacation because I know my work would have to take precedence. I have spoken with many small business owners and even personal finance bloggers that never work less than 40 hours a week. Is this a life that I want for myself?

My advice to college student/new graduates? Turn your hobby into a profitable side business. Start earning an income doing something you love or something that you’re really good at. It doesn’t matter if you only earn $50 a month at first. I love talking and writing about personal finance which is why I love putting together daily posts for you guys. I may only earn enough money monthly to pay the server costs and buy a case of Corona, but I still feel great knowing that I earn something for doing an activity that brings me pleasure.

Whether you decide to start a blog, small business, or even working as a freelancer the point is that at an early age you will begin earning an income doing something you love. Once you’re in your 30s with a a family and mortgage on your hands you will most likely be too afraid to pursue earning an income off your hobby. As a college student or recent graduate this is your best chance in life to get on track earning an income doing something you’re passionate about.

What is my dream career? It would be to write about personal finance but realistically I see the market as being over saturated with many great writers. At the end of the day I feel that I’m still too young to determine what a “dream career” is. I may end up finding a job within a company that challenges me and compensates me well. I could also become a small business owner that is stressed out 24/7. I believe that I won’t know what a dream career is until I find one.

What does the future hold for me? A stable career that will pay me a decent salary until my “side hustle” earns me enough money that I can go full time. Yes I know that sounds lame but I’m a pretty realistic guy.

What does the future hold for you? Please let me know.

2 thoughts on “Career Path Thoughts For College Students/New Graduates”

  1. Not bad advice for someone just starting out. I doubt too many of know what our ideal career would be until we are working it; I thought that being a chemist would be great, but haven’t yet found a great job within my field. Sometimes, you have to be flexible in your plans.

    As for me, I’m considering going back to school; while it would be nice to make a living from blogging, as you’ve mentioned, personal finance is a bit of an overcrowded field, but I’m not certain what else about which I could become passionate enough to blog every day.

    Good luck to you, in whatever you decide, my friend.

  2. I think that building your hustle on the side at first is a really good idea, very wise. Don’t rock the boat at first. Even those who successfully quit the 9-5 (like Jonathan Mead did today!) made the transition over more than a year or so. Good idea to save up an emergency fund to help you make the jump, too.

    I also agree that one should be careful about trying to determine too much in advance what one’s “dream career” is. You also need to have a bit of experience under your belt just to know what you really like, want and need. Otherwise you might just dogmatically follow some idea you had and it might be harder to switch over later on.

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