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Author Topic: Worried about career?  (Read 1799 times)
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« on: Dec 30, 2010 01:17 PM »


Salam,

I'm an American Muslim girl in British curriculum high school  in a Muslim country, planning to return to the States after my IGCSEs (which I complete in 2012) and I've been thinking of being an architect for a long time. However I'm very worried and basically been having panic attacks for the last couple of months about this choice. I'm good at physics, math, chemistry, art as well as interested in interior design and architecture so my family think that this would be a good choice for me. At the same time I worry that I may simply not be good enough at design, passionate enough about architecture, that I will dislike practical work and making models, or that I'm a bit scared of all that math. And the subjects that I'm really good at, that I find easy to excel in, are Arts subjects such as english, history, geography, sociology, however I do not want to devote my life to these subjects as basically from my own and my family's experience there are not many well-paying related jobs and I think frankly I'd be bored.

But my online searching about being an architect left me alarmed. All the sites seem to talk of terrible gruelling work at college or architecture school, all-nighters at studios, having zero free time even to join a fraternity or sorority, that you must be totally passionate about architecture to succeed. So more and more I feel bad. For quite a few months I went off the idea of being an architect completely, but didn't see any other career that seemed to suit me so well, as well as going through the most stressful, worried and panicky months of my life as a result. Recently I did istikhara and made a lot of dua about this choice, and feel much more secure and for the first time in months at peace, knowing that I can be an architect. So I'm scared of letting go again and wandering into the land of 'not-knowing.'

So whenever the slightest thing reminds me of career I feel worried and feel that I'd really like to talk to or meet a real architect or someone with experience to know fact from fiction and be reassured. Do any of you have any advice or help for me? Thank you.


P.S. this is a lovely site and has given me much knowledge, inspiration and reassurance for a long time. Thanks to all the Madinans who are on this forum and especially to Jannah. Allah yabarik feekum.

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« Reply #1 on: Dec 30, 2010 02:36 PM »

Walaikum salaam!!

Welcome to the Madina sis Smiley Jazaks for ur thanks!

I think that honestly you shouldn't be so worried Smiley If you're going to school in the US most college students will change their major at least 2-3 times!! This is just because sometimes you have ideas about something but once you take courses in them you change your mind, or find other things you like better. And there are always grad schools and certificate programs. What that means is that you can start in architecture, take some basic courses and see how you like it. Nothing is really permanent!

Sometimes certain subjects seem really hard to other people but are easy for others because they love the subject! For example, when I was in school a friend of mine had to take some basic computer courses for her major, she HATED them, they were torturous, she would stay up all night doing a program etc. Whereas I LOVED the computer science program. I didn't mind staying up all night and it might have been hard but I liked it. So your love for a subject can really make a difference too.

So again don't worry!! Take it a step at a time and keep doing istikharah... and have a  bebzi on us!

ws
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« Reply #2 on: Dec 30, 2010 05:28 PM »

Architecture is a lot of drawing,painting,sketching and stuff and a little of history,geography,physics,construction management and stuff.So,you shouldn't be worried too much about the math.
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« Reply #3 on: Dec 30, 2010 11:47 PM »

salam

Architecture isn't all encompassing, the architects do the drawings, and the engineers do the math (or most of it anyways).

I used to work in a world famous school for architects, its true near the year end when projects had to be completed the students barely slept (but thats no different than other courses).

How old are you, you could possibly try one of the summer/winter school short courses my former employer runs to get a taste of what Architecture is like, I could also put you in touch with tutors and who could talk to you about architecture and what it entails.

It is true all the students (the good ones anyway), who studied there were very passionate about architecture, but the course does last five years including a year out working, so it requires dedication and desire to succeed. On the upside all the students who I am in touch with have walked into amazingly well paid and stable jobs even in the current economic climate.

Take one day at a time, dont worry too much about many years down the line.



Wassalaam

And when My servants question thee concerning Me, then surely I am nigh. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he crieth unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright. Surah 2  Verse 186
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« Reply #4 on: Sep 12, 2011 10:22 PM »

Thank you all very much for your kind words and advice last time I posted my question.

After thinking about if for a long time and doing more research I eventually turned my thoughts to being an urban planner. I really felt that I would love the major, sounded like a great career, etc etc. However upon doing more research I found that most planners are warning people to stay away from the profession due to the unemployment at the moment.

So frankly I'm feeling kinda lost! Do any of you have any experience with urban planning as a profession and can you give me any advice?

Also I've been trying to broaden my scope for careers rather than focus on one, so I've found myself looking at being a civil engineer, or taking Civil engineering as a major then becoming a planner or engineer. Biggest problem? I don't really fancy being an engineer. I'm not crazy about Lego or maths or physics etc. I know that some of you on here are engineers....any advice on that?

So my thoughts go back yet again to being an architect but frankly I don't think I can do it. I decided after years of worrying that the fact that I felt sick to the stomach every time I contemplated designing buildings that architecture probably isn't for me.

All replies are MUCH appreciated. Jazakumallahykhairan.

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« Reply #5 on: Sep 12, 2011 11:13 PM »

salam


Architecture isn't necessarily about designing buildings, it's more about how you use space.

The way it was taught where I worked was veeerrrryy arty farty, not all our studnets ended up practicing it as a career, one that I know of went on to be a marine surveyor! We have an assorted number of engineers, architects, designers, and some have gone on to errmm design jewelery!


What are your strengths, what subjects do you enjoy, what are you passionate about? Architecture is a tough subject to study, I've watched our students get by on no sleep during the months in the run up to the final project exhibition. The one thing all our students have in common is a passion for architecture.

If you don't have that don't do it.

I used to work in prestigious institute of architecture.




Wassalaam

And when My servants question thee concerning Me, then surely I am nigh. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he crieth unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright. Surah 2  Verse 186
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« Reply #6 on: Sep 13, 2011 07:14 AM »

ws,

I don't know anything about either architecture or engineer but just saw this: Free engineering courses from STanford university. You could check out the materials and see if it sounds like your cup of tea!! http://see.stanford.edu/see/courses.aspx

They even have an iphone application programming class!!! i would sooo take that!
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« Reply #7 on: Sep 13, 2011 04:04 PM »

You should learn Wing Chun Kung Fu and teach self defence to Muslim Sisters!
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« Reply #8 on: Sep 13, 2011 08:28 PM »

I am an Electrical engineer and I can tell you that there is not much of physics involved, but there is a lot of maths, so go for it only if you like maths. I have a cousin who is an architect and all I remember from her undergrad time is that she was always drawing big charts and designing buildings and stuff. Architecture appears to be very interesting, urban planning should be similar, lots of drawing. Smiley
Good luck with choosing your career!
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« Reply #9 on: Sep 18, 2011 08:10 PM »

Have you ever tried job shadowing? Make a narrow list of careers you think have potential to make you happy, and then see if you can find someone you know in that field let you come to their work for a day or two and let them "guide" you through a typical day. We do that a lot in Australia, high schoolers are even paid for it lol...

Also most universities and colleges have an "Open Day" where you can meet students and lecturers of all courses who can give you a real insight on what the course structure is like.

Like Jannah said, in the US people change their degree a lot, so its not set in stone, and the most important thing is to be happy at what you do.

I pretty much got good marks in all my subjects, but my best one was English, I loved literature, but being Indian my parents wanted me to do med -- well I ended up in dental school and have just finished, but I absolutely love it. So dont worry too much, just have faith that Allah will guide you into something. Dont stress too much!! You will find your way Smiley Smiley
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« Reply #10 on: Nov 13, 2011 03:30 PM »

Yes, here I am once again staring at my computer screen and wondering what to do.

Okay so I crossed urban planner off of my list, as well as architect. Now, when doing more research on civil engineering I'm thinking that that will be the best way to go.

You guys asked what I liked? I'm, alhamdulillah, good at a variety of subjects as I mentioned. First is my knowledge-loving side that likes nothing better than essays:

I excel at English and love it, especially literature and writing, being told by my teachers that I read and write at a high university level (reading is my top hobby).
I really like geography, and that's why I felt that it would be a good way to turn my career, although I like human geography better than physical. Geo explains the whole world and how it runs! I love being able to look around me and apply what I learn in my geography class. A teacher once recommended that I consider Journalism?
Also I like Business Studies, mainly because it also explains to me how the world runs. However I don't have a flair for business in real life as my teacher pointed out.
I take Art and Design, mainly because I love drawing as a hobby and felt that it would be useful. I'm not really creative though and that crosses off any design/imagination-oriented careers.
I took history before but dropped it because I felt that it didn't challenge me enough, too boring, which is also how I felt about Sociology and similar subjects, even though I could excel in them. Although again I liked all the knowledge.

Then (and this is important) my more science-y stuff. Frankly as much as I like and excel in the above subjects, I feel unchallenged sometimes by them, and it can be good to actually get down to solving more abstract stuff.
Physics:  I switched to this and am SO glad that I did. A lot of work and sometimes I find it difficult but overall my favorite science. I find it interesting and easier to understand, probably because of the straightforward maths and rules.
Chemistry: this I took because it's so dead useful and essential for so many careers, even though I don't like it much and would be happy to never see an experiment again.
Biology: I didn't take this although I was good in it, because I don't like the experiments nor am I too interested in the body or plants. As long as I can remember I've never really liked Bio.
ICT: (i.e. Information and Communications Technology) Who doesn't like computers? Interesting, useful and pretty fun.
Maths: I'm good at maths and can handle it well, although I'm no whizz. I wouldn't mind working with it or using it as a tool although I'd be VERY scared of too much of it at a time.

So that is what I'm good at.

What I'm looking for in a job- work, money, satisfaction. I want to work well in college and then go into a well-paying job (Around 60-70k) I don't mind working hard but I'm very scared of choosing something and then finding that I dislike it. Also the main reason I wouldn't go into something like, say, Journalism is because I would like to be successful and have enough money from my job to support my family. I watched both my parents work their fingers to the bone to provide for my family in an MEDC then an LEDC, and so I really want to be able to have a job that is needed and well paid wherever I may go.

I would LOVE to go job-shadowing or any of those related job-activities but unfortunately due to living in the middle of nowhere that's just not an option. I really feel like the pressure is on me to choose what I want to do, people are constantly asking me what I want to be and my parents would like to know so that I can choose a good college. I have never confided all these fears that I have because I seem to change my mind so much! And the more I look up on careers the more I seem to encounter people who scream "don't do this! go study business or something because this sucks!" I mean, I even suddenly wonder if I should consider being a doctor even though I didn't take biology and I have always hated the idea? Was it just that I took a dislike to the idea, should I have done it? I feel nauseous just thinking about the choice ahead of me and the idea that I may have made mistakes.

Please, any more advice, any kind words would be so well appreciated. Thank you and sorry for such a long post!

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