Career Q&A: Should I change my career plans because of the recession? | Lindsey Pollak's Blog

Career Q&A: Should I change my career plans because of the recession?

recentgrad_090302_mn.jpgQ: I graduated in May with a political science major and am wondering what to do next. My plan was to apply to law school, but with so much student debt already incurred I am having second thoughts. I am currently working at a bank as a teller, but this is not the career I wish to pursue. With the current recession and unemployment rate I am terrified that I will be a bank teller forever. Any suggestions? — Lauren, Racine, Wis.

A: You are smart to consider your finances when making a decision about law school. However, if you’re sure you want to be a lawyer, I believe that where there’s a will there’s a way. Start researching scholarships, financial aid packages and part-time programs (which allow you to continue working) as ways to lessen the financial burden. Law can be a very lucrative career, so it’s OK to take on some debt to finance your education. However, if you are not sure you really want to be a lawyer, don’t apply until you’ve made up your mind.

Regarding your fear of becoming a bank teller forever, that is entirely up to you. If you are securely employed in that position right now, my best advice is to make the best of it, learn as much as you can in that position and network with your colleagues to help build your connections and your access to future opportunities.

In this tough job market, I wouldn’t recommend giving up a decent job. (Of course, if being a bank teller is sucking the life out of you, then you need to make a change, even if it means working in a pleasant retail environment or a coffee shop.)

Whether you keep your bank teller job for the short-term or not, it’s important to keep researching and networking in the industry in which you’d like to work. If it’s law, then subscribe to law journals, read legal blogs, attend networking events and professional association meetings for lawyers and ask everyone you know to introduce you to attorneys who would be willing to provide you with some advice and guidance.

Just because you’re not working or studying full-time in a field does not mean you can’t be part of it. Every action you take and connection you make now will help you position yourself for a career move when the economy turns around.

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  1. […] Home Page placed an interesting blog post on Career Q#038;A: Should I change my career plans because of theHere’s a brief overview…career, so it’s OK to take on some debt to Bfinance/B your education. … Click here to submit a question of your own Image: ABC BNews/B/Getty […]

  2. Is there some way to get a law firm to pay for part or all of your education in exchange for your agreement to work for that firm for a predetermined number of years after passing the bar? It may be tough in this economic climate, but I think I’ve heard of the same concept in the medical field.

  3. @Hayli – I have heard that with business school, but not with law school. Let me know if you hear of any schools doing that. Thanks for the comment!


  4. Johanne says:

    Sensible advice.

  5. Hey try to jump to a evening job or partime job related to your sector. Also perk up your qualification. All the very best……

  6. Very good discussion, very helpful for every one, & i am also agree with your all suggestions you give here. Mohammad Zohaib Khan from Job Listings

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