Finally, after four years and a 20K student loan later, I was finally done with college. This was the moment I have been waiting for. Graduation seemed to sneak up so fast, almost like these past four years have never happened. I knew with my psychology and journalism degree, finding a job would be tougher than most, considering these two fields are highly competitive, plus a psychology degree often means having to obtain a Masters in order to achieve a job in that field.
I figured I would have no problem finding a job though, considering I always landed work so easily: working for my school newspaper, hosting a radio show, working for a local newspaper, and interning for a local news station. I knew I had experience, and (too much) confidence, and thought finding a career would take no longer than a month or so. After all, I worked hard and felt confident in my abilities.
In February of 2015 (one year ago already!), I decided to apply for the Disney College Program, which is a six month internship with the company, after seeing the application on my university's website. I was filling out my application and marked that I had high interest in being a character performer with the company. The next morning I had gotten an email requesting a phone interview. Seeing as I got jobs so easily, I was not worried about not getting this one. A week after that email, I had my phone interview. I thought it went well, and I was told I had to attend an extra audition in order to be considered to be a character performer, which would have been the only way I would have taken a job at Disney, considering I would be graduating and could be looking for a job that pertained more towards my degree. I went to my audition, and a month later found out I had gotten hired as a Character Performer for Walt Disney World. I was mildly hesitant to take the job. Even though it was what I wanted, that meant I would put my actual career search behind. I realized I am still young and it was only 6 months, so taking this time off from finding a job in my field wouldn't be too harmful.
I moved to Florida to start my internship with Disney in August. I had told myself that I would start looking for a journalism job starting in September. September came, and I started looking. I would look weekly, applying anywhere from 6-10 (sometimes even more) jobs a week. October, November, and December past and still no jobs. I was getting frantic, considering I have not even had an interview yet and my internship with Disney was winding down. One month left and all Disney roommates had jobs lined up. I felt like a failure. WHAT WAS I DOING WRONG?!
January came, and that meant my time interning for Disney was over. It also meant I had to move back home, and be unemployed. I never thought I would be going home without a job. I was always so confident in myself and my career direction. Then one day I realized, maybe I was too confident. Maybe I gave myself too much credit.
I did not want to settle for any job that was not what I really wanted to do, which is being a broadcast reporter. This was the worst mindset I could have. I pushed away other good jobs to still reach for my goals, which seemed unobtainable. I was getting down on myself, and frankly I was bored. I needed to do something!
I caved in, and I found a part-time job that is not anywhere near journalism. I felt like this was my only hope for now, but would that mean taking a job that is not my career focus would mean I was settling? That was a question I was asking myself daily, and the answer to that would be NO.
I was not settling, but building experience for myself. I was gaining other values. Taking a job that may not be my "ideal" career choice, does not mean I am stuck doing it forever, and can still mean I am continuing on with my goals and dreams.
Finding a career right after college may be accessible to some, but many others are stuck in a rut, just like me. Choosing a job that is not in my career path threw me for a loop, but it also taught me to be humble and be happy for what is being placed right in front of me.
Even if I do not have my dream job yet, I am still working and focusing on my goals, and I know with time and patience, one day I will be able to achieve them.