By Nathan Page Ph.D.

First Steps in Finding a Career You Love

What is your major? Often times the answer to this question defines one’s identity on campus. Yet beyond the grounds of academia this question is rarely asked.  How often have you asked someone this question later in life only to find out their current profession is wildly different than the degree they earned?

While a major can often prepare students for a profession, do the student’s interests actually align with the degree they are earning? While colleges offer wide array of degrees and programs, how does a student decide? Are they learning through trial and error by taking introductory classes until they find one that peaks their interest?

Understanding one’s interests and passions are essential to finding a career that will keep you interested and invested for the rest of your working life. Just because you are good at something does not mean it is a profession you will find rewarding. Being engaged and invested in a career requires your interests to be in alignment with what you do, when this happens you no longer have a job, you have a career.

Having a career you are invested in doesn’t just affect your working life, it affects your entire life. A career assessment which focus on your interests can assist by steering you towards a job that best fits the things that motivate you and keep you invested.

Think about it this way: when you go someplace new isn’t it nice to have a map and someone or something that highlights the best places to see, eat, and sleep? Similarly, a career assessment will assist in determining your interests, which paves the road in determining careers that best fit you. While a good career assessment will not determine the exact job to apply for, it will provide you a general idea of which type of profession would best suit you in the long term.

A career assessment is not only about which jobs would best fit you, it also provides you with better insights in what makes you happy and valued in your work life. Furthermore it offers you a level of self-awareness that may otherwise take years of experience to find. If you had the option would you rather spend years stumbling from job to job hoping you come across something that you find rewarding or would you prefer to take a test that provides you insights and options you may have never even thought about?