Parents and teenagers. Help choosing what to study

bhello Doctor, I’m Marco, a 19 year old boy, I’m in the last year of Scientific High School. I’ve always been good at school, but now that I have to decide what to choose at the University I’m a bit confused. Having so many interests are in difficulty. I’ve always loved art, I like to paint, and I’m also quite good at it, but being also very studious, I chose the scientific high school and I also had excellent results in subjects such as mathematics and physics. Now my wish would be to choose a scientific faculty like engineering, but then still have a more creative job (I wouldn’t want the classic office or industrial job). But I don’t know what specifically might be the most suitable path for me. Could you give me some advice?

Thanks a lot, Mark

Dr. Peltonen’s answer

Dearest Mark,

Thank you so much for writing to me. I am very happy that you took the courage to write to me. Usually it is the mothers or even some fathers who write to me, while you are the first boy. While the most of the parents’ worries concern their children’s lack of interest in school and studybut you are good at school and full of interests, and you can also express the your artistic vein by painting. All this does you credit. But it certainly can be an equally heavy drama for a brilliant boy to know what to choose for his future. Especially in today’s society where “mistakes are not allowed”. He is afraid of making a mistake and then having to pay the consequences.

What to choose for the future?

The only thing I can suggest is to follow your dreams and desires. To choose what you really feel like studying. Surely studying engineering is not easy, and generally studying at university, regardless of the faculty, is not like studying in high school. It’s all different, you need a method, which some students already have, while some struggle to find it, and consequently struggle to complete their studies. There are those who choose a faculty and change after the first year (those who have the courage to admit that their first choice wasn’t the right one – because it takes courage to change). What no one can guarantee is the kind of job a graduate of any subject can find. This is exactly why it is important that you have a reason to study what you choose to study. And you have to find this reason within yourself.

Follow your dreams and desires

It will certainly be possible for you once you graduate to find a job in which to express your creativity, not all engineers are programmers, data analysts, closed in offices. To date, the most important skills that all companies in all sectors look for in candidates who will one day become future leaders are precisely creativity, flexibility, the ability to solve problems, and critical thinking. And these skills are not learned only at the university, at a particular faculty. Other life experiences also count (for example some time abroad, working or studying; interests beyond study which in your case could be art; active participation in the community, in politics, in the church; volunteering…).

A good engineer who has a creative vein will certainly have more choices than the job he wants to do. Bearing in mind that at the beginning as soon as you graduate, you certainly need to work your way up and maybe even accept some first “boring” office job. Also to understand what the world of work is like, and what are the thousands of opportunities in companies that exist from start-ups of young people to family-run companies in every sector to large multinationals, non-profits, institutions, etc.

On the other hand, if your desire is more towards an artistic career, even to study art you need a method, and your mathematical skills and knowledge of physics can be useful to help you express your artistic potential. All the greatest artists as well as being creative are also extremely rigorous and disciplined.

So dear Marco, I’m not able to say which faculty you have to choose in order to then be able to “guarantee” yourself a job that you like, no one can ever give you this certainty. But I can guarantee that if you choose with your heart you won’t regret it. And even if you later realize that you made a mistake and chose “wrong” you can always fix the shot, it will only be a life experience that you have lived, it should not be seen as a failure or a waste of time. If we choose with the conviction of choosing what is best for us at that moment, we will never regret it.

I ask you, what would you choose if you could choose totally freely, without any external demands, without conditioning? What would you dream of doing when you grow up? Base your choice on your answers. I wish you the best of luck, and let me know later.

Read all the episodes of the column dedicated to Parents and teenagers here

Dr. Laura Peltonen.

Who is Dr. Laura Peltonen

«I have a Master’s degree from Luca Stanchieri’s Humanistic Coaching Schoolone of the Italian pioneers of coaching, and a specialization always from the same school in Teen & Parent Coaching».

For contacts: Instagram: ellepi_coaching Facebook: Ellepi Coaching Laura Peltonen, Email [email protected].