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Home of the Delta Kings

Stagg Online

Home of the Delta Kings

Stagg Online

Aptitude tests force ‘best fit’ jobs

For those of you who were introduced to the Bridges program while planning your classes for next year, I want you to think. Think of how you felt sitting in front of a screen, scrolling through the lists and taking the online surveys. Think of the aptitude test and your results.

And for those of you who haven’t heard of this program, it is meant to give students an idea of where they want to go in life. What college they want to attend. What career path they want to choose.

It gives them links to college websites and help in finding scholarships. For some, this can lead them to finding out what they really want to do.

For people like me, however, it only led to confusion. Throughout my life, whenever I say I want to be an art therapist, and an art teacher on the side, my idea is shot down. Whenever people tell me how great I am at a certain subject, I wonder about becoming a teacher, only to hear my father’s voice in my head saying, “That’s not where the money is.”

We, as a society, have come to a point where we worship a little green piece of paper. We praise the money that buys us our basic necessities; and we refuse to acknowledge our obsession with extravagance.

Currently, I have set my mind on becoming an art therapist, helping people who have been sexually abused, assaulted, who struggle with depression, or other issue illnesses. I want people to know that they can get better through the use of art.

And even though this will only pay enough to give me the basic needs, I don’t care. A career is something that you want to do. A lifestyle. I want to know that when I’m ready to retire, I helped people.

While going through the aptitude test and reviewing my results, it made me realize that I knew what I wanted to do and that I didn’t need someone or something suggesting things. Occupations like “teacher” and “nurse” and “surgeon” and “musician” came up. If I relatively liked a certain school subject, it would group together all of the job choices that can be categorized under them.

Because of a lack of guidance through the website, I was left perplexed. And I’m not trying to put the blame on counselors or teachers for my uncertainty.

I knew that with programs like this, no one is trying to force a decision upon me. No one wanted me to go into a certain career. But for some reason, there were people taking the results as something quite serious.

They would be discouraged because “mailman” or “salesperson” popped up instead of “lawyer” or “doctor.”

For these people, I would say one thing. Don’t settle for less than you want.

Instead of taking the outcome of the aptitude test as some sort of ultimatum, challenge it. Ask yourself what you really want to do. Find out what they recommend, and then throw it away if it doesn’t make your decision any easier.

Take advantage of the opportunity to grow and explore, but don’t let it bring you down in the search for yourself.

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Aptitude tests force ‘best fit’ jobs