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No confidence, worried about the future.

DCthulhuDCthulhu Registered User
edited July 2012 in Help / Advice Forum
So, I'm a technician in the Navy. In three years I'll be a civilian again and it scares the shit out of me. I have no idea what I'm going to do with my life and I'm not particularly good at anything. I just know I hate my current job and that I don't want to do anything remotely like it. I'll have a free education to take advantage of, but I don't know what I should be looking for. I don't have a knack for math or science, so several potentially good jobs are already out the window.

I really don't want to be one of those bitter fucks who stays in the military just because it's a steady paycheck, but I'm not terribly confident in my ability to net a job outside of "fast food drone" once I step off the brow for the last time.

Oh, adulthood sucks.

Posts

  • SentrySentry Registered User regular
    I'm not going to lie to you... very few people have a "knack" for math or science. If you want to do something in math or science, study your ass off in math or science. Part of going to school though is learning what you want to do. Something like 90% of people change their major during college, that's because very few start knowing what they want to do.

    Also, use the time you are there to build some skills. You might hate it, but I guarantee you will be able to learn something applicable to other jobs you absolutely won't hate.

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  • illigillig Registered User regular
    there are lots of well paying blue collar careers that don't require heavy math or science (but will require some) - machine operators, CAD designers, welders, various oil workers, long haul truckers, mechanics, etc.

    alternately, there are plenty of white collar jobs that don't require sciences either.

    what do you like to do... or more accurately, what could you stand doing for 40-50 hrs/week for the next 30 years to put food on the table?

  • DCthulhuDCthulhu Registered User
    Sentry wrote: »
    I'm not going to lie to you... very few people have a "knack" for math or science. If you want to do something in math or science, study your ass off in math or science.

    Oh, I'm fully aware of the fact that you can't just "get" something like aeronautical engineering without a lot of time and effort. I just know I'm TERRIBLE at math.
    illig wrote: »
    what do you like to do... or more accurately, what could you stand doing for 40-50 hrs/week for the next 30 years to put food on the table?

    I'm a decent artist, but I really don't want to spend that money on an art major.


  • FANTOMASFANTOMAS Fland SudAméricaRegistered User regular
    Historically "art" and "putting food on the table" are pretty incompatible. Im an almost decent artist, I work as IT at a university. I have art as an expensive hobby, if it ever goes somewhere else, awesome, but if it doesnt, I have my job to put food on the table.

    I think illig was on the right path with his question, but "artist" is like saying: "Oh yeah, I figured it out, I am going to be a rock star!".

    So, think of something plausible that will give you means of surviving and time to devote to an activity that you find more fulfilling, in this case, aparently art, I will asume its visual arts.

    PS: In the neighboring sub-forum PA:AC you will see some really talented artists that do make a living from art, you should drop by the Q/A thread or chat thread to know about what real posibilities an art major could give you.

  • PrimePrime Registered User regular
    edited July 2012
    Dont know if its the same in the US, but my brother inlaw started an architect course a few years back, he promptly switched to civil engineering after a year because it was too arty and no real maths.

    Last I heard architects make a decent living.

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  • UsagiUsagi WOMP WOMPRegistered User regular
    DCthulhu wrote:
    So, I'm a technician in the Navy. In three years I'll be a civilian again and it scares the shit out of me. I have no idea what I'm going to do with my life and I'm not particularly good at anything. I just know I hate my current job and that I don't want to do anything remotely like it. I'll have a free education to take advantage of, but I don't know what I should be looking for. I don't have a knack for math or science, so several potentially good jobs are already out the window.

    I really don't want to be one of those bitter fucks who stays in the military just because it's a steady paycheck, but I'm not terribly confident in my ability to net a job outside of "fast food drone" once I step off the brow for the last time.

    Oh, adulthood sucks.

    So question: Do you hate being a technician, or do you hate being a technician in the Navy?

    Because though the difference may seem subtle, it's a vastly different world once you're out. Just by virtue of being a Navy tech, there are lots of businesses that would snap you up to do the same sort of work (see: just about any defense contractor on/around Navy bases, shipyards, equipment manufacturers, etc.), but you wouldn't have to salute your boss or go to sea.

    That said, engineering is definitely a path open to you. The biggest hurdle is to convince yourself that you don't "suck at math", but that maybe you needed a better teacher to help you past the part that didn't make sense. Math education in the US stinks and encourages people to decide they suck at math rather than giving them the tools to push through.

    So yes, you can absolutely pursue engineering--or any other math heavy path--if that's what you want, and by thinking about this now you've put yourself in a good place to start learning about it and bolstering your education to get to a four-year university.

    You heard it here first, folks.
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  • sportzboytjwsportzboytjw squeeeeeezzeeee some more tax breaks outRegistered User regular
    DCthulhu wrote:
    So, I'm a technician in the Navy. In three years I'll be a civilian again and it scares the shit out of me. I have no idea what I'm going to do with my life and I'm not particularly good at anything. I just know I hate my current job and that I don't want to do anything remotely like it. I'll have a free education to take advantage of, but I don't know what I should be looking for. I don't have a knack for math or science, so several potentially good jobs are already out the window.

    I really don't want to be one of those bitter fucks who stays in the military just because it's a steady paycheck, but I'm not terribly confident in my ability to net a job outside of "fast food drone" once I step off the brow for the last time.

    Oh, adulthood sucks.

    I gtfo'd the Air Force after my first 4 years. Take your GI Bill to the nearest solid University, get a business degree (some math required, but we dumb that stuff down due to working with stupid people and having stupid people take the classes :) ). If marketing or gen-business are your best bets. Other options: Computer science and graphic design, or getting a degree in teaching, since there is quite a bit of aid for getting your degree in teaching and being an ex-military member doing it.

    The main takeaway: You have a freaking degree paid for, go get it. Start taking 1-2 classes/semester right now (At least the AF paid for me to do this) then use that sweet sweet GI Bill to get your degree.

    Walkerdog on MTGO
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  • DjeetDjeet Registered User regular
    You're looking for "what to choose" for your paid-for degree? STEM motherfucker. We all suck at math, the people who suck it up and do it anyways are the guys who get paid.

    I kick myself daily that I wasted my college years and didn't get a valuable degree.

  • SentrySentry Registered User regular
    Yeah... everyone sucks at math. I failed college algebra twice, and freaking REMEDIAL College Algebra once.

    I just finished Calc 1 with an A. The only people who suck at math are the ones who say they suck at math and then wash their hands of it. You only suck at it as bad as you want to.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
    wrote:
    When I was a little kid, I always pretended I was the hero,' Skip said.
    'Fuck yeah, me too. What little kid ever pretended to be part of the lynch-mob?'
  • NotYouNotYou Registered User regular
    Hey, so the only thing you've said you like in this thread is art. As a man who is making good money with art, let me tell you, it's definitely a solid option. Do any of these fields interest you?

    Graphic Design
    Advertising
    3d animation for film
    3d animation for games
    3d model making
    toy design
    product design
    storyboarding
    directing
    illustration
    motion graphics
    web design
    web development

    There are a lot more but I'm too lazy to make a giant list. Basically, I want to school for animation and now I'm making flash banners on the web at an advertising studio.

    I'm gonna disagree with anyone that says you should figure out what you want to do while you're in school. You should go in with a plan. I know it sucks, but you've gotta choose. Very few people end up choosing something that makes them shout with joy at the chance to do that sort of work. We all just do the best we can. Think really hard, then make a decision.

    A lot of my friends became accountants. They have jobs. They make good money. Can't really say if they're happier than me or not. I'm sure it depends on the person.

  • WassermeloneWassermelone Registered User regular
    Its definitely possible to make money in art. I wouldn't recommend it for everyone; you have to figure out if its something that you can't not do. Its not easy, it takes an immense amount of time, and it can be very costly. You can also impact your own enjoyment of the hobby by making it your career.

    On the other hand, there are some people that just couldn't do anything different and for those people I couldn't recommend it more. I do concept art and illustration and I don't think I would be me without it. I love my job and I make a more than comfortable living doing so.

  • DCthulhuDCthulhu Registered User
    edited August 2012
    I like the idea of leaving art as a hobby, it's a form of stress relief for me. I doubt I would love it as much if it was my main source of income.

    How do you "catch up" when going back to school? When I get out of the Navy I'll be 27. That's nine years without any schooling. I'm afraid I'll be way, way, behind.

    DCthulhu on
  • a5ehrena5ehren Registered User regular
    You don't really have to "catch up" on anything if you aren't doing math or science. They'll teach you what you need to know as part of the curriculum.

  • sportzboytjwsportzboytjw squeeeeeezzeeee some more tax breaks outRegistered User regular
    DCthulhu wrote: »
    I like the idea of leaving art as a hobby, it's a form of stress relief for me. I doubt I would love it as much if it was my main source of income.

    How do you "catch up" when going back to school? When I get out of the Navy I'll be 27. That's nine years without any schooling. I'm afraid I'll be way, way, behind.

    Yea, and if you're doing math/science, start taking remedial classes now.

    Otherwise, start taking regular classes now. 1-2 a semester is very doable, and I assume the Navy will cover it. Get crackin'!

    Also, if you're not taking super-hard/stressful classes, you could do an art minor. It can be too much, since it will be very time-demanding, but if you're taking business classes mostly (I say this as someone who took a lot of business stuff) you'll be fine.

    Walkerdog on MTGO
    TylerJ on League of Legends (it's free and fun!)
  • UsagiUsagi WOMP WOMPRegistered User regular
    DCthulhu wrote: »
    I like the idea of leaving art as a hobby, it's a form of stress relief for me. I doubt I would love it as much if it was my main source of income.

    How do you "catch up" when going back to school? When I get out of the Navy I'll be 27. That's nine years without any schooling. I'm afraid I'll be way, way, behind.

    MWR or Fleet & Family should have resources to point you towards a local community college or even a distance learning program, so check it out. You might have to take an aptitude test to figure out where you should start, but heck you've got three years to buck up your education with USN resources, definitely use them!

    You heard it here first, folks.
    Putting your finger in someone's butthole.
    Basically the same as flowers.
  • schussschuss Registered User regular
    Prime wrote: »
    Dont know if its the same in the US, but my brother inlaw started an architect course a few years back, he promptly switched to civil engineering after a year because it was too arty and no real maths.

    Last I heard architects make a decent living.

    Then it wasn't a very good program. Good architects are half-structural engineer/half-artist. It's also often an incredibly competitive field that doesn't pay commensurate to the training required, and is subject to the building boom/bust cycles that construction experiences.

  • DCthulhuDCthulhu Registered User
    I was actually considering architecture, since it seemed like a nice blend of something creative and something practical.

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