I am a 29-year-old veterinarian and have been out of school and practicing for 3 1/2 years.
I am coming to the conclusion that I have picked the wrong career and am convinced that
I need to make a change. I think I am fortunate to know that I would like to go into the
computers/electronics field. However I am not sure about the best way to go about
making the change. I have a natural talent for computers but I realize that I probably
need to get some kind of training or certification. Any advice on this?
The Career Doctor responds:
If you’re a regular reader of this blog you know how much value I place on finding
one’s ideal job/career. And sometimes the change in careers is quite dramatic as in
your situation. Even though you invested a lot of time and money to become a
veterinarian you’ve come to realize that there are more important issues in life
such as being happy with your job and career. What are the steps for realizing this
change? Remember to take your time with this decision — do the research and make
the transition at your own pace.
First step: Research specific career paths within the computer field and focus on specific
career paths that interest you. There are numerous tools you can use to research career
paths. You can go online to the Department of Labor’s Occupational Outlook Handbook
or one of several computer/technical association Websites; you can brainstorm with a career
professional from your alma mater’s career services office; you can conduct informational interviews with computer professionals in your local area; you can attend one or more computer
professional association meetings and network with people in attendance.
Second step: Once you’ve narrowed your choices see if you can shadow one or more people
in your field to help solidify your choice. Use that time to also research the types of education
training and certifications you may need to enter the field.
Third step: Start getting the training you need — and ideally get experience (through volunteering
internships etc.) in your new field at the same time.
Fourth step: Once your education and training is near completion and once you’ve gained
experience in your new field begin networking and job-hunting using all available resources.
For more information about changing careers go to this section of Quintessential Careers:
Job & Career
Resources for Career Changers.
For more information about jobs and careers in the IT/technical field go to this section of
Quintessential Careers: Jobs in Technical
Telecommunications Computers Software and IT.