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Why I Decided To Go Into A Career Unrelated To My Studies

by Amy Roslan. |

A research conducted by YouGov found that more than half of Malaysian graduates’ work in jobs that are unrelated to their degrees, particularly those who took business, administration and law as their major. I did not participate in the research but I am one of the business graduates who ended up working in a somewhat unrelated career. I was also one of those kids who let my parents influenced my decision when choosing my university major 9 years ago. Were you too?

“Hey, Dad, look at me

Think back, and talk to me

Did I grow up according to plan?”

The Ultimatum: You Need A Job To Kickstart Your Career

Why did I decide to go into a career unrelated to my studies? I needed the money and I needed to get a kickstart in real life. In 2017, I was a master’s degree graduate with no working experience, trying my luck applying for jobs that I thought were suitable for my education level. After submitting my thesis, my dad gave me an ultimatum; that was to fly back to Sarawak if I couldn’t land myself a job in a month. I knew very well that the job market and opportunities provided back home were and are still very limited. Eventually, I told myself that if I couldn’t land myself a job that I wanted, I should apply for jobs at companies that I want to work with.

It’s Crunch Time: It Can Be Stressful, But It Will Sustain You

Having a degree does not guarantee success in life but it is a prerequisite for most jobs. It’s difficult to land your dream job right after you graduate even with the most employable degree. Even when there is a job advertisement for your dream job, what does the company expect from you as the applicant? Did you tick all the requirements? Cool! But what about the pay and daily commute? Are they offering you enough to afford a room/house nearby or cover your daily commute expenses? At the end of the day, will it all be worth it?

I have been working for over 3 years now with a beauty company. It was not my plan to work in this field but I need to pay my bills. I enjoy the benefits and the flexibility that comes with the job. But being in a service line, there are days when it gets really stressful that you want to bang your head on the wall. Then again, all jobs can get really stressful and you should learn how to healthily manage your stress.

Follow Your Passion Or Be Realistic: Weigh The Benefits

As a working adult, I learned that passion is really valuable. You are very lucky if you are currently making a career out of your passion although it is not related to what you studied. When you have the interest and a goal, they will be reflected in your work. You’ll be waking up every day looking forward to a job that brings satisfaction in your life. However, when you have a lot of commitments, it’s really tough to divide your energy, time and money resources for other things in life. It’s difficult to chase after your passion if you don’t have the ability to do so.

The Road To Success Is Fraught With Risk

What if your major is your passion but you can’t seem to land a related job? Even before the pandemic, the job market in Malaysia was depressing and very competitive. Your major may have been a sought-after degree 4 years ago, but by the time you graduated, the said demand may have decreased. If you have the ability to take on the challenge, I would say go for it. Just know that you do not have to limit yourself to your major back in university and it is definitely common for people to venture into something totally new for them.

You can find out more about the author on Instagram.

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