Ever since my first day in the ninth grade, my relatives, my teachers, even random strangers I bump into on the way to karate class all seem alarmingly concerned with what I want to do when I grow up.
“Do you want to be a doctor, dear??”
“Or a lawyer, maybe??”
“How about an engineer??”
Questions like these have started cluttering my conversations with other people and it has obviously got me thinking about my future.
DO I want to do something mainstream, like become a banker?? Or am I more interested in working as an architect or a neuroscientist?? Or, do I want to go off the beaten path and be an entrepreneur, setting up businesses and companies of my own??
There are so many options, so much choice…
Or is there??
When I asked around and did a little bit of poking, I realised that, where I live, there is real opportunity only in certain niche professions.
For example, there is a lot of scope for, say, a budding pianist, because the music is a thriving industry in this tourist hotspot. Speaking of tourism, there is space for travel agents and hoteliers to set up shop here, owing to the large numbers of travellers that flock here annually.
But what if I don’t want to do either of those things, like the majority of students?? What if I want to do something a little more different, like astronomy?? Where do I turn??
“Go to the US, study whatever you want and then come back here,” everybody suggests. But to what avail?? If colleges here don’t offer the courses I’m interested in, chances are there isn’t a need for the services of people trained like me, so what will I do back at home??
This is exactly why so many people are permanently relocating to foreign countries nowadays, which ultimately has an adverse effect on both our economy and our standard of living.
So what can we do about it?? How can we get more people to settle down and remain here??
By creating jobs that people are passionate about. By making a need and then filling it.
With our resources and our population, the possibilities are limitless. We could be the standard to which the rest of the nation is held and compared to. All it takes is a little bit of innovative thinking.
For example, the government could create an environment committee whose sole purpose is to make sure that the state remains clean. People who care could train to become eco-activists and public speakers.
We could also have an animal protection organisation for those passionate about helping out four-legged friends. Professionals here could include animal psychologists and pet medics.
People with a love for the waves could teach the locals and tourists the joys of scuba-diving and surfing and everything in between.
Of course, our tourism sector could do with a lot of improvement too. Institutions could be established to teach students how to increase, manage and control tourist traffic.
And improving our crumbling public transport system would result in the creation of hundreds of secure jobs.
At the end of the day, though, people should be engaged in jobs they actually enjoy -jobs that give back to the state- and this translates into a wide range of career possibilities. Fortunately, we have the means to make that happen, if only we start being a bit more innovative.