What Do You Want To Be When You Grow Up?

Hadrian Barrera, Staff Writer

“What do you want to be when you grow up”? I’m pretty sure everybody has heard this line once in their life, most likely from a family member or maybe a friend. This question is an important one. Each person’s answer offers a glimpse into their unique path – what steps they will take after they graduate high school. Will you go to college, university, the military, trade school or get a job? There are so many options to pick from when you graduate and everybody has their own vision of what they want to do after high school.

Although most people choose college, some prefer not to go to college or university but rather work in a job that doesn’t require a college degree. For example, you do not need a degree to work at a restaurant,  as a plumber,  electrician or a hairstylist. Or maybe some people just don’t have the money to go to college. But there are such things as scholarships.  To get a scholarship you at least have to get passing grades in all your classes because your grades not only determine if you move on to your next grade, they determine your future.

Everybody has to have at least one dream job in mind. Maybe it is to become a surgeon, a lawyer, an architect, a teacher, or a writer. It is important to make goals for oneself. In order to reach those goals it is important to get good grades starting in high school and continuing in college. 

I spoke to several freshmen and many of them claimed that they weren’t worried about what they wanted to do after high school. A few mentioned wanting to be a doctor or a lawyer but they wouldn’t go into detail about it. Their response kind of reminded me of exchanges people have with each other at a fast food restaurant. The person at the counter asks the customer what they want on their burger “onions or no onions,” the customer says “No onions” and that’s the end of it. The customer doesn’t go into detail about why they want onions on their burger, they are  just there to get a burger. I’m pretty sure everyone knows what I’m talking about.  

It appears to be normal for freshmen not to think about their long-term future. I mean they’re freshmen, not juniors or seniors. When they are upper-classmen  then they are forced to start thinking about it. 

Some people think freshmen only think about the latest Tik Tok trends or which celebrities are going to break up with each other this year, instead of their future goals. But certainly, not all freshmen are like that. 

“I want to be a lawyer,” states SPHS freshman Aulani Portillo. “I want to work in crime.” To do this Portillo knows she needs to get good grades and attend university. “I plan to go to Kyoto University in Japan,” continues Portillo. She will then go onto law school.

Portillo is a unique case, already knowing what she wants to be when she grows up. “Because freshmen are young they don’t have to think about what they want to do after high school right now,” Portillo says. “They’re more focused on passing freshman year.” 

Some, like Portillo, may have it all figured out early on, but this does not mean that the path will be easy. “This school year is hard,” Portillo concludes. Despite the obstacles, Portillo is certain that she will “make her family proud” by becoming a lawyer one day.  

The message is clear: whatever job you want to have or whatever person you want to become, you have to do well in school. Most high school students might hear this a lot from their parents and they’re right, if you don’t pass high school it will be difficult to accomplish your dreams. A lot of students are still contemplating what they want to be and that’s ok. The best advice is that famous line from Back to The Future: “If you put your mind to it you can accomplish anything.”