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 Post subject: College or Job?
PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 1:06 am 

Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 6:36 am
Posts: 18
Location: Scotland
I've arranged myself to go to college come the start of september and have everything sorted out. I'm going to do all my highers (same stuff i did at school) and get my grades up because i think it'll look good to future employers and increase the opportinities of jobs i could go for which require good grades. But i have my uncle and dad and big brother who seem to beleive am going to waste a year of my life and think i should just go get a job and forget about college. I hadnt had a job for 2 years since i left school which has made me decide to go to college. this problem has come about since i refused to apply for a job that pays the national minumum wage (£4.60 an hour i think) to go to college cos i had already got all it sorted out.

Does anyone think am wasting my time going to college to do my highers and think i should just dive straight into a job?

All the negetive talk from my dad, uncle and one of my brothers has sort off put me off it even though i think its best.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 2:54 am 
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Location: England
Its difficult to know what will be best for you without asking some questions.
Why didn't you get a job when you left school?
What kind of job are you thinking of doing?
Do you have any plans to go to University?
What subjects are you planning on taking?
What did you get the first time round?
Why do you think you will do better this time?

Basically, I'm trying to say that you need to consider what your goals are, and whether they are realistic. I'm guessing that you are about 19ish. If you have a career in mind that you won't be able to get into without better grades or if you really want to go to Uni, and you honestly think you can get better grades then go for it.

If you are going back to college because you don't know what else to do, that can still be a good idea, but there is a great risk that you will finish up the end of the year without knowing what you want to do - you need to figure this out.

If originally when you took your highers you took your best subjects, worked as hard as you could and got poor grades and you now want to retake, I'd question whether you are being realistic - perhaps a different sort of course would suit you better.

The other question to ask yourself is, what kind of job prospects have you reasonably got where you live?

For non-Brits, Highers are approximately the same level as high school diploma or taking APs. In Scotland you take at least Highers to get into HE college or University. The British system in both Scotland and England/Wales/NI is very exam / qualification oriented and many people retake Highers / Advanced Highers / A-Levels to get better grades.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 6:00 am 
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I do know that there is a strong statistical link between the amount of education one has and their lifetime earnings. In the US, a college graduate can expect to earn 1 million dollars more than a high school graduate over their working lifetime.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 8:47 am 

Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 6:36 am
Posts: 18
Location: Scotland
plonkee wrote:
Its difficult to know what will be best for you without asking some questions.
1. Why didn't you get a job when you left school?
2. What kind of job are you thinking of doing?
3. Do you have any plans to go to University?
4. What subjects are you planning on taking?
5. What did you get the first time round?
6. Why do you think you will do better this time?

Basically, I'm trying to say that you need to consider what your goals are, and whether they are realistic. I'm guessing that you are about 19ish. If you have a career in mind that you won't be able to get into without better grades or if you really want to go to Uni, and you honestly think you can get better grades then go for it.

If you are going back to college because you don't know what else to do, that can still be a good idea, but there is a great risk that you will finish up the end of the year without knowing what you want to do - you need to figure this out.

If originally when you took your highers you took your best subjects, worked as hard as you could and got poor grades and you now want to retake, I'd question whether you are being realistic - perhaps a different sort of course would suit you better.

The other question to ask yourself is, what kind of job prospects have you reasonably got where you live?

For non-Brits, Highers are approximately the same level as high school diploma or taking APs. In Scotland you take at least Highers to get into HE college or University. The British system in both Scotland and England/Wales/NI is very exam / qualification oriented and many people retake Highers / Advanced Highers / A-Levels to get better grades.



I have a few ideas of what i want to do but havent yet decided. i'd consider going to uni but thats down to my grades thats one reason why i want them better cos it'd make that as a possible choice. I also want the grades higher soo that i'd have good enough grades to become a manager or get a job as an electrician. Going to college for me is mostly about opening up more choices for a better career in the future.

To answer your questions
1. I left School 2 years ago to get a job but because theres not alot of jobs in my area i was put in a training scheme which i was in for 9 months. As much as i tryed to get a job after i left school i still havent had any luck.

2. I have many ideas of jobs such as Manager, train driver, electrician, Police officer, chief And a few others which i cant yet think of but should come to me later. Few things are holding me back to become a manager i need good grades. to be a train driver i need to be 21 i'm 18 now. To be an electrician i need good grades aswell as find a company to take me out on an apprentiship which is hard cause there are alot of youngsters competing for apprentiship places. Police officer i need a driving licence. Chief i need qualifications.

3. I would consider uni but would have to choose a career first.

4. Physics, mathematics, english and hospitality thats the 4 main ones

5. I got an intemediate 1 for physics and mathematics 4 General same for english the rest was all 4's except art and design which was a 3.

6. I think i will do better this time because i'm more motivated to do it. Back in school i didnt study at all leading up to my exams as i didnt care less about my future and i just wanted out of school to just dive into a job.

When i think about it now though its not any job i want its a well paid one and i want a job where i can have a good career from it or even open my own business like a chief for example. I dont fancy going in and out a job all my life just to pay my mortgage or put food on the table. Thats one of the main reasons why i've decided to go to college but all the negitivity i'm getting from certain people in my family and no support is kinda putting me off the idea about college. even though i beleive its best.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 10:10 am 
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Location: Portland, OR
Have you considered relocating?

This would do two things. 1 - it would remove you from the negativity of your family. 2 - it might open up a whole new set of options for you job-wise.

Personally, I'm a fan of taking off a year or two between high school and uni to discover more about yourself and what you really want to do. I think asking an 18 year old to decide what they want to do with the rest of their lives when they've barely experienced anything is absurd. But, if there are no jobs in your area, that's a problem.

Have you tried talking to people in the professions that you're interested in? People love to talk about what they do and why they do it (if they enjoy their job at least) so it might give you a more realistic expectation of what the job is going to be like in real life - which is probably nothing close to what it's like in your head. It might help you decide if that's a route you really want to follow.

Choosing a career is tough. I went through several before I landed on what I'm doing now. It freaks some people out, but changing industries did a lot to make me the kind of worker I am now and really give me the well-rounded experience I needed. Now that I've found something I'm passionate about I'll be sticking with this for a while.

I guess what I'm trying to say is you don't have to decide your life tomorrow. You need to do what feels right to you (and tell others to bugger off if they don't like the way you're living your life) and try new things to see what you'll actually enjoy.

My friend Joy and I joke that when we were kids we wanted so much to be adults and now that we're adults we find it's not always what it's cracked up to be and wonder what our rush was.


Good luck!


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 10:45 am 
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Joined: Thu Apr 05, 2007 1:25 am
Posts: 458
Location: England
It sounds like you would be a good candidate for going back to college and improving your grades.

A well paying job is a very broad and generic thing, have you tried reading 'what colour is your parachute?' usually available in libraries. In college you should use the careers service as they will be able to help you find realistic and enjoyable careers.

If you are interested in working in hospitality in any way, then you should get a job in the catering trade - there are relatively unskilled jobs available that will expose you to different careers and people who could help you. Usually being a chef is not well-paid unless you are very good, but there is the opportunity to start your own business.

Being a train driver is an interesting job, is well-paid and is actually related to being an electrician. A good way of getting to be a train driver is to get a job working for a train operating company like ScotRail - maybe there are part-time opportunities near where you live, if you live in Glasgow you might get part-time work with the Glasgow Underground. If you're really open to relocating, London Underground often have jobs going (including part-time).

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In mathematics you don't understand things. You just get used to them. John von Neumann

http://plonkee.com and http://thereligiousatheist.com


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 1:06 pm 

Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 6:36 am
Posts: 18
Location: Scotland
pf101 wrote:
Have you considered relocating?

This would do two things. 1 - it would remove you from the negativity of your family. 2 - it might open up a whole new set of options for you job-wise.

Personally, I'm a fan of taking off a year or two between high school and uni to discover more about yourself and what you really want to do. I think asking an 18 year old to decide what they want to do with the rest of their lives when they've barely experienced anything is absurd. But, if there are no jobs in your area, that's a problem.

Have you tried talking to people in the professions that you're interested in? People love to talk about what they do and why they do it (if they enjoy their job at least) so it might give you a more realistic expectation of what the job is going to be like in real life - which is probably nothing close to what it's like in your head. It might help you decide if that's a route you really want to follow.

Choosing a career is tough. I went through several before I landed on what I'm doing now. It freaks some people out, but changing industries did a lot to make me the kind of worker I am now and really give me the well-rounded experience I needed. Now that I've found something I'm passionate about I'll be sticking with this for a while.

I guess what I'm trying to say is you don't have to decide your life tomorrow. You need to do what feels right to you (and tell others to bugger off if they don't like the way you're living your life) and try new things to see what you'll actually enjoy.

My friend Joy and I joke that when we were kids we wanted so much to be adults and now that we're adults we find it's not always what it's cracked up to be and wonder what our rush was.


Good luck!


I was actually thinking about moving today i'd love to get away from all this negetivity but how i'd go about moving without havin a job or money i have no idea. i'd love to move cos i beleive i'd be better off because i'd be going out and trying things and risks and learning from my own mistakes rather than someone else telling me there view of it which somtimes changes my mindin the end. I havnt spoke to anyone to be honest soo wouldnt really know if any of my choices of jobs would be good for me but am hoping this course will give me a better idea of some things aswell as give me more ideas.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 1:17 pm 

Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 6:36 am
Posts: 18
Location: Scotland
plonkee wrote:
It sounds like you would be a good candidate for going back to college and improving your grades.

A well paying job is a very broad and generic thing, have you tried reading 'what colour is your parachute?' usually available in libraries. In college you should use the careers service as they will be able to help you find realistic and enjoyable careers.

If you are interested in working in hospitality in any way, then you should get a job in the catering trade - there are relatively unskilled jobs available that will expose you to different careers and people who could help you. Usually being a chef is not well-paid unless you are very good, but there is the opportunity to start your own business.

Being a train driver is an interesting job, is well-paid and is actually related to being an electrician. A good way of getting to be a train driver is to get a job working for a train operating company like ScotRail - maybe there are part-time opportunities near where you live, if you live in Glasgow you might get part-time work with the Glasgow Underground. If you're really open to relocating, London Underground often have jobs going (including part-time).


I actually had an idea of how to go about becomeing a train driver I was applying as a ticket examiner for the trains but they turned me down as i hadnt had atleast one year retail experince soo i'm hoping to find a part time job in retail whilst at college and then after i leave college apply for a ticket examiner job with scot rail and work hard and try work my way up to being a train driver. Also if i had got a job while at college i'd try get my liceance soo that I can apply for the police force I think i meet the requirments they want and fitness ones too such as running 1.5miles in under 15mins I can do 3 miles in 25 minutes.

I actually think about my future almost everyday and keep planning it over and over in my head. But way no one really in my family supporting me with my choice on going back to college its a bit of a let down. I'll be doing it anyway but its gonna put me off during the course. I love being positive and all but the negitive thoughts from certain people in my family tend to bring me down kinda. I'd speak to my mum about it because she hasnt been negitive about it but she just seems to have no opinion at all about whether she thinks am doing the right thing and i can tell its starting to annoy her when i bring up the conversation.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 1:39 pm 
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Location: Portland, OR
What about leaning on your friends for support?

We have two families in our lives. The ones we're born with and the ones we choose. Sometimes the ones we're born with aren't as supportive as they could/should be so at those times it's important to lean on the family that we've chosen. They're likely to be the ones who will give you the support and feedback you need/desire.

I'm sorry your family isn't supporting you. Have you talked to them about it? Really told them that this is something you want to do and while it may not be a choice they'd make it's your life and you'd like their support, or at the very least you'd like them to not give you a hard time about something that's important to you. Maybe they don't realize that what they're doing is hurting you.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 20, 2007 2:17 pm 

Joined: Mon Jul 16, 2007 6:36 am
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Location: Scotland
pf101 wrote:
What about leaning on your friends for support?

We have two families in our lives. The ones we're born with and the ones we choose. Sometimes the ones we're born with aren't as supportive as they could/should be so at those times it's important to lean on the family that we've chosen. They're likely to be the ones who will give you the support and feedback you need/desire.

I'm sorry your family isn't supporting you. Have you talked to them about it? Really told them that this is something you want to do and while it may not be a choice they'd make it's your life and you'd like their support, or at the very least you'd like them to not give you a hard time about something that's important to you. Maybe they don't realize that what they're doing is hurting you.


talking to friends about it I think thats a good idea but I dont really see them now cos i choose it better to go along life without them. I'd like to talk to my family about how I really feel but to be honest I'd feel really uncomfortable i think i'd seem like a totally different person. They dnt actually know half as much about me which makes them hard to talk to about it. I was a bad guy back in school cause i was soo influenced by mates and that and what i did when i was with them i wouldnt normally do. my family dont know that. and they judge me by who i was in the past. its naw untill i left being with my friends i felt better about myself and more positive.


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