When I grow up, I want to be a…

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This topic contains 43 replies, has 28 voices, and was last updated by  Steve Ressler 9 years, 7 months ago.

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  • #105451

    One of our recent job posts – an Entry Level Mechanical Engineer for the Navy – got me searching to learn more (don’t worry, I’m not looking myself!)

    But check out a video I found from a Naval Officer/Mechanical Engineer:

    If you don’t have time to watch the video (which is an excellent concept – “Mentor on Video” – succession planners and recruiters, take note!), he says, “When I was growing up, I wanted to be a Naval Officer.”

    How about you?

    When you grow up, what did/do you want to be?

  • #105537

    Steve Ressler

    At age 5 it was a baseball player. At 10 it was basketball player. 12 it was a rapper. 16 an accountant. 19 a professor. 22 a government CIO. 26 an enterpreneur….

  • #105535

    Nichole Henley

    5th grade- a nun (I went to Catholic school!!)
    8th grade- an editor
    twelfth grade- advertisement developer
    junior year of college- graphic designer
    now- I’m doing what I love!! I can’t ask for more at this moment!!

    But in a perfect world where responsibilities and money didn’t matter, I’d like to open a cafe and serve soup, sandwiches, salads and sweet treats. It’d be a family business and I’d do it because I love to cook, I love to feed people, I love food, and I love to treat people!!

  • #105533

    Tanya Hilleary

    This is an excellent, inspirational video. Thanks so much for posting it.

    When I was growing up, I wanted to be a diplomat. However the internet industry was taking off, so instead I created a career in international marketing and public relations initially for internet companies and then ultimately using internet technologies exclusively to accomplish those marketing and communications goals in the 2.0 space. I learned early in my career that my role was simply the private-sector version of diplomacy. Seeing how it dovetails so nicely with work in the public sector at the current stages of my career is a personal joy and energy source.

    Whether I’m on the public or the private side, whenever I’m connecting two people or groups, speaking at a conference, or negotiating a business deal or an idea, I’m acting in that diplomatic capacity, and I can certainly say mine has been a dream realized. 😉

  • #105531

    Stephen Peteritas

    5- cab driver
    10- WWE wrestler
    15- stay at home dad
    20- just something interesting
    now- the Dos Equis guy

  • #105529

    1st Grade – Astronaut (til Challenger)
    6th Grade – Lawyer (til someone told me there were too many)
    College – Roman Catholic Priest (til I figured out celibacy wasn’t sustainable)
    Mid 20s – Best Grant Writer in the World (til I got burnt out on the stressful deadlines)
    Now – First time I don’t have a 5- or 10-year plan (and open to ideas)…maybe it’s GovLoop Forever 🙂

  • #105527

    Attia Nasar

    “when I grow up I wanna be famous, I wanna be a star…” sorry but that song came to mind whenever I saw this post!
    I grew up around doctors and dentists so for the first decade or so that was what I wanted to do
    12-radiologist (then I realized I hate biology)
    14-fashion designer/cosmetologist to the starssss (I was convinced you’d see my name in the credits one day)
    17-decided I want to work for the UN (big turn around right?)
    18-a communicator/human rights activist/work for UNICEF because I love kids
    now – something in public diplomacy/international affairs/new media (and i want to have my own bakery one day!)

  • #105525

    Candace Riddle

    At 5 – An astronaut
    At 10 – A Marine Biologist (This lasted until college)
    At 17 – Maybe a JAG officer (I took an interest in international law)
    At 19 – I gave up marine science after blowing up several test tubes in the chem lab and decided to be an attorney
    At 20 – A CIA Operations Officer (spent about 9 months interviewing and gave up on taking the LSATs)
    At 21 – Life happened (I had my first child and got married)….LOST in translation… did whatever worked.
    At 22 – A financial advisor (I worked at Merrill Lynch right as the market crashed)
    At 24 – A Commercial Contracts Administrator (*angels ahhhhh sounding music here*) I had finally found the perfect way to combine all of my experience…Problem – nobody would hire me.
    At 25 – Maybe a diplomat? Headed back for an M.A. in Diplomacy as I continued the job search in the contracting field
    At 26 – HIRED BY NIGP!!! Working in Public Procurement research and love my job! Think I’ll stay here for a while.
    When I Grow Up: First of all, growing up is sooo over rated. Second, I still have lofty aspirations and might finish my Ph.D eventually and retire into higher ed after a robust career in the public sector. 🙂

  • #105523

    Kevin Carter

    Up to Age 14 – Imagineer (Disneyland Ride Designer)
    Up to Age 20 – Campaign Manager/Politico
    Up to Age 21 – City Manager
    Now – Government Innovator/Entrepreneur/Writer famous for his TED Talks, wit, and charm.

  • #105521

    Rebecca Brown

    What a great video! I like that he states as long as your willing to try teachers will assist you. Isn’t that the key to life, as long as your trying as hard as you can people will be there for you?

    3-5: Cash Register Lady
    7-10: President Of the United State ( I don’t think this one is going to happy)
    18-22: Sales and Marketing Specialist- Continuously pursuing every day!


  • #105519

    Caryn Wesner-Early

    I thought my sister was the only one who wanted to be a Cash Register Lady! That’s neat.

  • #105517

    Caryn Wesner-Early

    Archeologist, until my dad brought home a beautiful coffee-table book about Pompeii – that stone dog haunted my dreams for years.

    Then, teacher. That lasted until college, when I realized that I don’t do real well with groups of more than 10 people who don’t want to be there.

    When I was 21, I was in the library of the elementary school where my mom was working, and it came to me, I’m going to be a librarian. When I told everyone, they were like, duh, of course! I wonder what tipped them off – my making due date slips for my books, or experimenting with shelving them in different order (alphabetical by author or title, chronologically, etc.)?

  • #105515

    Mark Hammer

    If you’ve never done so, check out the work of the late Donald Super, the godfather of developmental theories of career/vocational choice.

    For me, now that Tuli Kupferberg is gone, I think I want his old job: divine rascal. If circumstances permit, and I don’t die first, I’d like to go back to teaching. Well, that, and making bitchin’ fuzz pedals.

    Now that I think of it, I wanna be Buckaroo Banzai!!

  • #105513

    You’re younger than I realized, Andy! You were in elementary school when the Challenger disaster happened?! I was a freshman in college in January of ’86.

  • #105511

    Growing up, I wanted to be a teacher or a baseball player.

  • #105509

    Sterling Whitehead

    I don’t want to grow up because I’m a Toys’R’Us kid…oh wait, wrong topic.

  • #105507

    Nichole Henley

    haha!! I love the priest comment!!!

  • #105505

    Sam Allgood

    It’s amazing how similar #1 and #2 are!

  • #105503

    Good morning Govloop members and friends! Always I wanted to be an attorney and the President of the Supreme Court.
    I born in another country and during elementary school I was a poet and a writer. In middle school I was a singer, and a journalist.When I finish high school in a private and catholic school I wanted to be doctor in Biology because I met Jacques Custeau and I believe it was a great adventure.
    After six months of my Biology Research emotions I started the Law School.
    I graduated from the University and started my practice as a Criminal and Administrative Fraud Attorney. I had the opportunity to practice my career only six years.
    I moved to the United States, I had to learn the language, back to the school, I got my bachelor in Criminal Justice and human resources, my MBA in Health Administration and Policy and now, I am in the last year of my PhD in Public Administration, with a specialization in Leadership and Non-profit.
    In my heart and in my mind I am an attorney.
    Everything I had done and I am doing is based on the laws, regulations, policy and procedures.
    Sometimes I feel frustrated because I could not be an attorney again!
    One day I am going to finish the book I had been writing for the past five years about this question I am answering today.

  • #105501

    Denise A. Katula

    My 11 year old daughter wanted to be a “cash register lady” so badly – until I told her they don’t get to keep the money in the till! With lots of free time this summer, she’s back to playing “store” and took over my living room credenza with her cash drawer and fake money. It’s nice to see kids still using imagination.

  • #105499

    Does my wanting to be Batman count?

  • #105497

    Denise A. Katula

    If I can remember correctly, a teacher like most little girls, then a flight attendant, an architect, an interior designer, …

    The question for me now is after my government service, what am I gonna do? Teacher? Librarian? Innkeeper? Lavender gardener? One of the cool things about starting government service right out of college is that when you’re ready for a full service retirement, you’re still young enough to have a whole new career!

  • #105495

    Of course!

  • #105493

    As an Air Force brat, strangely enough, I wanted to be a Naval Pilot. I just wanted to fly… why Navy I can’t quite remember. Graduated from high school, but couldn’t afford college. So I worked and did part time community college. That wasn’t going anywhere fast, so then I decided to join the Air Force with the hopes of finishing college while in the service… great plans of mice and men… too busy with my first military career- learning air traffic controlling, then crossed over into safety career. Finally finished BS in Industrial Technology thru an off-campus program as I was retiring. BUT I did get a chance to fly a T-38 and a T-37 while an air traffic controller thru an incentive program to familiarize controllers with the pilot’s world on the other end of the mic. ALSO I did private pilot lessons and did 10 hours plus a solo flight… before I married and funds dried up. My fault…. should of pursued while costs were lower. That was my DREAM!!

  • #105491

    Tracy Fahrion

    6th grade – an elem. school teacher
    12th grade – an elem. school teacher
    BS Degree – Elem Ed and Speech Pathology

    Current job (13+ years): Information Specialist / Web Content Manager
    … other than the cubical environment I wouldn’t change anything.

  • #105489

    What did that path look like, Tracy? Always curious to see the circuitous paths to present career!

  • #105487

    Tracy Kerchkof

    In elementary/middle school I wanted to be forensic pathologist, a virologist, an ER surgeon, a Marine….it really depended on what show I was watching/book I was reading at the time.

    In high school, I wanted to be a biochemist or some kind of science researcher, toiling in the lab in my lab coat. (until I took freshman chemistry in college)

    In college I wanted to be an agricultural engineer, helping farmers in the field and designing conservation practices to protect waterways. (which I did in internships and got kinda bored, and got frustrated with the policies that led to poor management in the first place…which led me to policy…)

    Now, I’m the least sure of what I want to be (professionally) than I ever have been in my life. It’s a little scary.

    If I didn’t have to make money and could support myself, I would love to just stay home and garden, craft, cook, bake, take dance classes, bike and read all day every day.

  • #105485

    Douglas Gerard

    Elementary years – Naval pilot (that died when I discoved that I needed glasses at age 12)

    High School year – Did not care too much, just figured that something would present itself. Thought about teaching but was told that teachers barely made enough money to pay rent and to do something else by a guidance counsellor and several teachers.

    Senior year of HS – Looking at 2 full ride 4 year college scholarships, I decided to skip college and joined the Navy as a Photographer’s Mate.

    10 years after joining the Navy – I though law enforcement might be fun, ended up working for Customs on the border and eventually an east coast seaport. That fun ended when I hurt my back, rupturing 2 discs.

    10 years after joining Customs – became a Contract Specialist by accident, had applied for a Real Estate Specialist position that I didn’t get and was offered the CS job. I did not even know what it was but said “Sure, why not”. Next thing I know I was an 1102!

    10 years after becoming an 1102 – still trying to figure out what I want to do when I grow up. I just started my PhD dissertation and I am thinking that I might try the teacher idea again. As I have earned a Civil Service retirement that will be available in about 6 years, I won’t need to make as much, plus teaching at a university is a bit more lucrative than teaching in the K-12 system.

    Reality – I just want to keep running marathons, triathlons and long distance cycling events, stay married to my lovely wife, and never grow up!

  • #105483

    Anne Hasselbrack

    Early on, a Nun. Reading other posts, it seems like the Church lost a lot of us somewhere along the way!
    I used to wear my doll’s blankets (my old baby blankets) over my head like a habit.
    But even at a very young age, I also loved writing. I guess I fulfilled that since I do so much business writing, but still enjoy “literary / creative” writing as well 🙂

  • #105481

    Cindy Sue Causey

    An ichthyologist.. Had Eugenie Clark and her adventures with sharks as my inspiration at the time (the 60’s).. Accidentally ended up spending ten years as a dolphin trainer instead.. When I *really* grow up, I’d love to go back and redo those same ten years.. Was too young and “in the moment” to appreciate just how precious those experiences were as they flew by in a flash at the time..

    Warmest from Talking Rock.. 🙂

  • #105479

    Lynn Hannblom

    Great question!
    Age 6 or so – a Teacher
    10 – a Nurse
    17 – a stay at home mom (never did have kids)
    25 – I still didn’t have a clue
    28 – HR Director
    51 – I’m at that not sure stage again.
    Following on to Nichole’s “in a perfect world” where money didn’t matter – I’d have several acres where I could house and care for rescued animals.

  • #105477

    Steve Ressler

    That’s exactly what I thought…I’m a Toys R Us kid…great song

  • #105475

    Jeremy Michael Long

    As a kid, when I grew up, I wanted to be a plumber, working for Roto-Rooter. Then, when I was a teenager, I changed my mind and wanted to be an electrician. A few years earlier, when I was 13, I wired up a dollhouse, put in lights, climate control units, working utilities, running water (via siphen pumps), etc. I even added additions onto it. (The dollhouse, that is.) I wired up and improved my battery-operated toys and started using AC Adaptors to power them, so I could save money on batteries. This is what I refer to as the “AC Adaption Method.” I improved electronic and stereo equipment and even added on features that the products that I rewired or tweeked up never before had. I even wired up low-voltage outlets in the house. I had a toy washing machine (originally battery operated) that I installed a more powerful DC motor in as well as a regular power cord with 2-prong plug and plugged that into one of the 3-prong duplex outlets that I wired into my low-voltage AC adaption power supply system. I actually timed it to wash mini clothes to run like the real washing machine. (Fill-Up, Agitate, Drain, Spin) Also I made it, so that it has 2 speeds – Fast for the normal cycle, and slow for the delecate cycle. I also washed my handkercheifs in it, using regular laundry detergent (Tide, that is) and fabric softener (Downey). It actually cleaned like a real washing machine. After the fast 7 minute spin cycle, the handkercheif came out almost dry. I guess you could say I had a little bit of Tim Taylor in me myself. (Remember? Home Improvement with Tim Allen, More Power, GRUNT! GRUNT! GRUNT!?, Binford Tools?) Believe it or not, I wired my first 120-Volt appliance when I was only 12 years old. I was only 7 when I started experimenting with battery current. Next thing you know, I was rewiring lamps, replacing outlets and switches that needed to be replaced, etc. This is what inspired me to want to be an electrician. When I was 18, I had only been driving for two years when I bought my first car, a 1992 Mercury Sable. I added some extra features of my own to that car. I added an amplifier to boost the sound in the rear speakers, and out of wood, I made a console that fits underneath the center of the dashboard, equipped with an organizer to accomodate the Kleenex box, tapes, CDs, etc. Housed in the casing under the dash, I installed an AC Adaption system, battery trickle charger/maintainer for the car’s battery, security system, 12-Volt power ports, a power inverter and AC outlets mounted on the side, indicator lights, switches to control different things, and also my in-dash 8-track stereo in order to avoid compromising the the car’s own AM/FM/Cassette stereo. I also installed hookups for a small portable TV and CD player. These features are now in my current car. (A 2006 Toyota Camry XLE – “The Cadillac of Camrys”) Now also including an HD Radio. In fixing up my real house (the one I actually live in, though I still have everything above, only now stored in boxes in a large walk-in closet for the purpose of sentimental value), I used my electrical and plumbing repair know-hows. I always loved taking things apart and putting them back together. I come from a long line of handy and mechanically inclined people. It’s in the genes. It runs in the family. A lot of this led to my later interest in computers and electronics. When I was in college, I used to buy electonics equipment at thrift stores and repaired any flaws in them. I took courses in electronics and computer repair. I built a PC desktop computer with an Intel 486 CPU and the operating system was good ole Windows 95. Remember Windows 95? I enjoy typing this as much as you probably enjoy reading it. It’s like taking a little trip down Memory Lane. So at any rate, I then wanted to be a PC Repair Technician. I enjoy working with and operating machinery. Every Christmas, since I was 14, I would rig up all my Christmas decorations with an electrical system so that you can turn them all on at the flip of a switch instead of individually. When I was in high school, I got a job with the USDA. When I was in college, I worked at a Kmart store. Now I work for the FDA. In all the jobs I’ve had over the years I’ve fixed lots of things that I really didn’t have to from oiling squeeky wheels of carts to properly maintaining business machinery, outside my reqular work routine just because it’s just something that I enjoy doing. I hate seeing things go to waste, I’d dive into a dumpster or go onto a building renovation site if I had to in order to salvage some goodies. By the way, my current position at FDA is a Dockets Manager, but a lot of my IT skills come in great handy for this job too!

  • #105473

    Jeremy Michael Long

    Oh, might I add, before I wanted to be a plumber, working for Roto-Rooter, I wanted to be a Toys ‘R’ Us Kid.

  • #105471

    Mark Hammer

    Two major events are looming for me in the next few years: finishing paying off the house, and being eligible for a pension.

    Both lead me to seriously consider what I really want to do. Not having to make mortgage payments anymore will enable me to take one of the lower paying jobs that are in abundance. For some reason, probably because I’m in a category that is normally reserved for economists, I would have to take a $10-20k cut to do what I’m trained to do. Can’t afford that right now, but when the house is paid off in 3-4 years, I will be able to.

    I’ve never planned on retiring, but having a financial cushion that will cover taxes and car maintenance will let me pick the work I think needs doing, instead of the paycheck I know needs earning, so it will be nice to make the choice, instead of having it made for me.

    Of course, when you have decades behind you of having to find fulfillment in tasks and responsibilities unceremoniously dumped into your lap, you learn to play it by ear, without having your heart tenaciously set on one thing. Sometimes that can make life much more interesting. A local fellow I met retired from a civil service job as a carpenter, and went into business making, of all things, baseball bats, including bats for players like Barry Bonds and Ryan Braun. Life sure is an interesting river raft ride.

  • #105469

    Ann Seltz

    Nun–loved those old habits but then found out you couldn’t go swimming whenever you wanted….
    Lawyer–but only like the ones on tv–good clothes, nice offices, lots of wins, no law school
    Writer/Journalist—and did that for 10 plus years until I realized my income could not keep up with my lifestyle, ever
    Entreprenuer–except taking those big risks without a safety net seemed to scary
    Retired–just for awhile when living through this recession
    Now: launching a website and event covering green government topics
    (and growing up is overrated).

  • #105467

    Cindy Sue Causey

    Ann said ::

    Nun–loved those old habits

    Depending on everyone’s age, wonder how much The Flying Nun played into that “when I grow up” dream..? 😀

  • #105465

    Denise A. Katula

    Are you married? I could use someone with your skills around the house! (Just kidding!)

  • #105463

    Phyllis L. Alberici

    Before age 10 I wanted be (in no special order) a glaciologist, an archaeologist, a paleontologist
    From about 11-18 I wanted to be a teacher, librarian, news reporter, writer of the next Great American novel
    From 19-23 I wanted to be a writer, FBI agent, news reporter, librarian, professor of American Studies, archivist
    From 23-31 I was (in no special order) an archivist, a public records analyst, a librarian, writer and teacher
    At 32 I had my first baby and became an investigator, archivist and writer
    In my thirties I was a make up artist (seriously), newspaper feature writer and court investigator (don’t ask)
    After that life became a crap shoot with more writing, government work in everything from public safety response to nuclear power plant incidents to labor relations, grant writing, being a Paramedic, and having about as much focus as my yellow lab (focus…focus…focus…squirrel!…focus)
    Now I’m still writing (newspaper writing and features), working in labor relations, writing grants, retired as a Paramedic, and missing emergency management planning.

  • #105461

    And how’s the next Great American novel coming along? 🙂

  • #105459

    Kevin Lanahan

    6th Grade: Werewolf. Not a career path, exactly, but it sounded fun.
    High School: Butler
    College: Run a diner
    Young adult: Brewmaster
    Now: a Kitemaker. I really like the idea of pasting little pieces of cloth up in the sky.

  • #105457

    Phyllis L. Alberici

    It’s lumbering along…

  • #105455

    Phyllis L. Alberici

    If only half of this was true, it would be terrific!

  • #105453

    Steve Ressler

    Cool. My best friend is completing his MIS degree right now too.

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