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For Kids, Education That Counts : An Engineer Shares Retrospect

Updated on March 7, 2013

Self Knowledge & Knowledge of Careers of Future are Key (Introduction)

I have two degrees, a BS degree in electrical engineering from NCSU, and MBA from NYU.

Now years later, on hindside 20/20, I think I made a good decision in key points in my life.

But the tough part was that there were awful lot about real life experience I simply did not know, ie, about my own natural strengths and weaknesses internally. And about the career world externally.

I believe my own experience in retrospect is as many young people in high school or just entering college today is the same, and my "hind sight" can help young people to engage on pursuits that allow them to know both "internal" and "external" knowledge that will make life more sustainable and enjoyable pursuit.

So, in the earlier years , I had to find out from painful and "hard knock" experience in life later, ie when economic down turn hit.

I have been reviewing the way I made key education decisions at key points in life. To assess now for posterity, if the key decisions could have been better.

If I chose something else to study than what I chose, ie, first decision was one with some guidance from my father, but the 2nd on the MBA, I made on my own decision as I was away from home and working on my first job.

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Better Options to learning through the real world of work

Where School of Hard Knocks Prevail ?

I made good decisions in both case, but I wish I knew lot more about myself than I did when I made these decisions.

But the tough part was that there were awful lot about real life experience I simply did not know, ie, about my own natural strengths and weaknesses internally. And about the career world externally.

I believe my own experience of young people in high school or just entering college is the same, and my "hind sight" can help young people to engage on pursuits that allow them to know both "internal" and "external" knowledge that will make life more sustainable and enjoyable pursuit.

So, in the earlier years , I had to find out from painful and "hard knock" experience in life later, ie when economic down turn hit.

I have been reviewing the way I made key education decisions at key points in life. To assess now for posterity,

if the key decisions could have been better.

If I chose something else to study than what I chose, ie, first decision was one with some guidance from my father, but the 2nd on the MBA, I made on my own decision as I was away from home and working on my first job.

I made good decisions in both case, but I wish I knew lot more about myself than I did when I made these decisions.

That's an issue always the tough thing for kids I think, that is, to know your own strengths and weaknesses sooner to avoid painful learning later in the real world of work, outside the shelter of home & an university.

I wish I had belonged to some self improvement club like the one that Ben Franklin started called the "Leather Apron Club" for self improvement and mutual help, when he was 21 years old.

Any case, I like to share some thoughts here about how today's kids can make better decisions by working harder to learn about the two key uncertainties about getting an education that counts.

When I entered NCSU as a freshman I always thought I was going t study engineering. Though everyone knew that engineering was the toughest school in the university.

Engineering comes much easier to those who are analytical in their aptitude. My aptitudes was more creative side, and not the analytic side.

This I did not know at that time, not even when I graduated and got my first job as an engineer in a factory in New Jersey as an engineer.

My employer agreed to pay half the cost of getting a MBA with a tuition remission plan, so I worked day and went to school at night to get my MBA.

So, how can kids ending high school and those who start college can find out more about their inner strengths to aspire to invest in the careers of the future ?

That is the key question, I hope each person aiming for a new career or a change in career will think deeply.

One other possiblity that is open to almost all is to volunteer some time for a community service activity that is unpaid but allows one to use ones natural skills or find out more about what those skills while going to school, college, or working in a job which really isn't all that satisfying or good fit to generate pragmatic passion in life's aspirations.

That's how I found out my true creative skills, via such a volunteer activity & new skills exploration activity at the local community tv station that lead to becoming a community tv producer, a hobby that I sustained enjoyably for more than five years since.

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An Engineer Shares Retrospect  (Self Knowledge & Knowledge of Careers of Future are  Key
An Engineer Shares Retrospect  (Self Knowledge & Knowledge of Careers of Future are  Key
An Engineer Shares Retrospect (Self Knowledge & Knowledge of Careers of Future are Key

Physical Science Skills & Experience for Motivation toward Careers of the Future ? - Know Thyself ?

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This then is the background for the ancient philosophical advice from all three of the ancient cultures of the past, Greek, Chinese, and Indian, “Know Thyself”.

LIfe Science Lab Experience or partime work experience toward motivation for Life Science Careers of the Future ? - A Wise Ben Franklin Wisdom to honor and re

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Here is what Ben Franklin, the wise and multi-talented Founding Father of America, said on this subject:

There are three things extremely hard: steel, a diamond, and to know one's self.

Benjamin Franklin

Education That Counts Board

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    • george williams 3 profile image

      george williams 3 

      5 years ago

      hi, I happen to be an engineer as well, or was, and I was also torn between the arts and the technical. I just retired after thirty years and looking back I wonder what I really accomplished. I was working in military electronics and even the good stuff we created and build fell by the wayside more often than not due to mismanagement or budget cuts. I did survive though and now I am spending most my time working on the Internet, playing with my grand children and I am playing guitar in a rock band! I don't miss the career one little bit!

    • iijuan12 profile image

      Shannon 

      6 years ago from Florida

      Good ideas!

    • verymary profile image

      Mary 

      7 years ago from Chicago area

      I do think early identification of strengths & weaknesses is very helpful for kids .... although of course sometimes these can develop in surprising ways, with maturation.

    • profile image

      poutine 

      7 years ago

      Thanks for commenting on my lens "Kids Who Make A Difference".

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