What Are You Going to Do When You’re Older? Don’t Know? Read This!

Marisa Bregg, Staff Writer

What is your passion? “That is a question I ask every student.” -Michael Salmon

Consider spending your summer months trying to discover the answer. Get off the couch, and get a life.

Here are some suggestions to find your passion. You’ve got to be adventurous, and try things that you wouldn’t normally do.

Consider these ideas:

1) A Three Week “Working Vacation”

Remember the Ovation a few weeks ago about Sea Trek? Well if so, perhaps a program like that could be your passion. You can train for your diving masters and learn from experiences you never thought you would have.  Mr. Shamp is going to be working as a staff member for Sea Trek this year. He says that you can come bond with him while experiencing real science, instead of simply reading about it in a classroom textbook.

Amazing things often come with an amazing price. So if you don’t feel like paying $5,300, explore the possibility of doing something locally.

2) A Local Internship

If you’re into studying sea life and being hands on with various creatures, but don’t have $5,300 burning a hole in your pocket, consider being an intern at Mote Marine. Annually, more than 1,600 volunteers get up close with sea life in their programs. You will be able to educate others about the laboratory and learn more about the ocean. There are many different internships available where you will be able to research/study marine biology. Visit Mote’s website in order to pick out which internship you would to like to experience. You must fill out a long application, so if this is the experience for you, you better get started.

3) A Summer Job

If sea life isn’t your thing at all, you’ve still got a chance to find your passion. How about a summer job? While working at Publix or babysitting may seem like obvious choices, consider an internship. Ariana Losch held a summer job working in an office.

“I work part-time at TechHouse IT Consulting Solutions, and I was able to get the job through the recommendation of a family friend and by filling out an online application,” she said.

“Having an office job gives me some new insight into what to expect in the future, as many of my previous assumptions and fears about working under a company have definitely changed. Probably one of the most important things I have taken out of the whole working experience is my newfound appreciation for managing a salary. When you actually have an income of your own, the process of saving and spending the money in your wallet becomes a bit more important to your daily life,” she added.

“My best experience occurred when I was put in charge of creating an advertisement for an annual charity. When the whole task (which took about two weeks) was completed, it was an incredibly gratifying feeling. I can’t say that I’ve had a really terrible experience just yet, but there are moments when the stress of certain responsibilities can bring you down – messing up as an new employee can be pretty embarrassing, and the guilt that comes from it can be somewhat overwhelming,” she said.

“I would encourage most students from ODA to get a job, but I wouldn’t recommend it to those feeling stressed out about the amount of school work/sports obligations that they have to deal with on a weekly basis.” suggests Losch.

The whole goal of finding your passion is to find what you want to do for the rest of your working life. This starts when you go to college.

Michael Salmon, college counselor and Panda Ambassador, says that his passion is making sure that his senior students have the right fit for college. He loves to work and wants to help them find their passion in life as they go to college. If students don’t know what they’re passion is he asks this question, “What do you enjoy doing on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon?” It’s the activities that we do on the weekends that could be the key to finding your passion.

Salmon says that your passion you find when you’re younger changes and evolves as you get older. Even now as a grown man he says that his passion is not definite. One day it could be helping a senior find the right college, and the next it could be wanting to go on a vacation.

So there you have it. Three amazing chances to find your passion. If it’s not any of the three, then you’ve just narrowed it down some more. Keep trying because before you know it, you’re passion could turn into a reality.