The Nice Advice: How to choose what to do for career, college

Published 9:00 am Sunday, November 6, 2016

The Nice Advice by Leah Albert

Dear Leah,

I’ve been thinking recently about what I want to do with my life because I’m in my senior year of high school, and I need to start thinking about it so I can apply to colleges. Whenever I think, “Hey I might actually really enjoy doing this thing for the rest of my life,” there is always somebody or something that has to put that idea down. This causes confusion and a million questions to run through my head on whether or not I actually want to do this or if it is worth going through so many years of schooling just to get to the point where I can actually do it. As usual there are people in my life that are causing me to second guess myself and my choices.

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Recently I’ve been thinking that maybe I should go to school for nursing. There are so many different options for jobs as a nurse and I think that I would really enjoy being a labor & delivery nurse or a midwife. Maybe I will even try a career as an OB/GYN (but that’s a lot of schooling). So basically what I’m asking is what I should do. If you have any advice on different jobs that may be available that I may not even know exist that would be greatly appreciated. Any advice on picking colleges and how to start looking would also help me a lot. Thank you.

Signed, Discouraged

Dear Discouraged,

Before we get into the details of medicine and college, I want you to remind yourself of this: other people will come into your life and tell you what to do — but you alone have to deal with the consequences.

That said, I think what you must do is do research, and tons of it. Talk to doctors — OB/GYNs and others — about their experiences. Ask your school college advisers for information on colleges, and use websites. Remember also that one person’s opinions on their job or a specific college doesn’t really mean much; you need to talk to as many people as you can.

Moreover, you need to set aside time to think about what you want. You like helping people, so naturally nursing makes sense. But, are you good at biology? Medicine? If not, think of other careers you can have.

Your undergraduate major does not define your entire future. I changed my major in college, and honestly almost everyone does. This leads me to my final point: In terms of a specific college you would like to apply to, first consider what fits you best. Is a small or large school right for you? Urban or rural? You get the point. But, since you don’t necessarily know what you want to do, it might make sense to prioritize schools that have well-rounded options so you’ll be able to consider a lot of different possibilities. Take care!


Leah Albert is a fictitious character. She likes wine and writing. Don’t ask her to be a matchmaker. Do send your questions to Leah at