When I was young, I wanted to be a teacher. After all -- most of the smart adults I knew? Teachers. Seemed like a "smart" bet. I made up lesson plans. I played schoolhouse. As my teachers taught lessons, I thought about how I could do it better. I researched topics. I really, really like learning. Have I mentioned I'm a big nerd?
By middle school, I began to question my teacher plans -- maybe there was something else out there? We had a "job shadowing" day. I decided to shadow a veterinarian. I loved animals, and vets were usually very smart people. That day didn't go so well -- I made it through watching a spay and a neuter as well as finding out that a dog was going to be euthanized. But I fainted when a cat came for a bandage change -- the bandage was stuck through its skull. Ok, I was not cut out to be a vet!
Then, I was super excited when my counselor told me I could take a test that would tell me what careers I should pursue. Yes! A little guidance! I was beginning to feel overwhelmed by the choices, and just wanted someone to tell me "You would make a great x!" Then I got back the results... Big Disappointment. My counselor informed me... "Wow! I've never seen someone rate so highly in all the categories! You can do whatever you want!" Gee. Thanks.
Back to the teacher plan. At least I can teach other people about all the great things I like to learn.
There was a hitch in my plans when I moved from my rural Ohio town to upper middle class suburban Detroit. Suddenly, my plans to become a teacher were not "big" enough. All the college prep kids talked about being either "pre-med" or "pre-law." I had to pick my side. Since I have a *huge* needle phobia, and don't particularly like being around sick people (look how well I did around sick animals!), I started saying "pre-law." I also started hearing this phrase, "Those who can, do. Those who can't, teach." Ugh. I guess teaching is for losers.
Then I when to college. And I was overwhelmed and exhilarated. So many things to learn! I double majored. Psychology AND Education. With TWO minors -- Biology and History. Clearly, my true talent is learning. Anything. I just soak it in.
As planned, I became a teacher. But, that did not go so well. I spent two years as a Special Education teacher for high school students. I then became a classic burnout case for Sp. Ed. teachers.
So... back to school. But in WHAT???? Then I found IT. The program for me. Information Science. YES! That's what I love. INFORMATION. I got my Masters in Information Science.
Fast forward to today... I'm an IT geek. And I love it. I get to learn new stuff all the time, solve people's problems, and I'm always surrounded by information. Mmmmmm.... It's so comforting.
People often ask how I went from teaching to IT, but it's really not as far a jump as you think. See?