Monday, March 19, 2012

Is being open minded bad?

Is being open minded bad? I have started to wonder that over the last few months. All though college I was told to make yourself diverse. Learn a little about every subject so that you can be knowledgeable when you go out into the computer world. This gives you an upper hand because you are open to change and don't corner your career into a market too small. But is this a really good way of thinking about it?

In recent months though I have decided no, being specialized is by far a better route. Anywhere you look (at least in my case) companies, nonprofits, NGOs, volunteers agencies all are looking for specific skills and don't want you learning on the job. What does this mean? It means you need either higher education (masters or PhD) or 3+ years of experience in that specific field. It makes me look back on my college career and wonder if it was all a waste. Yes... I know.. It wasn't a waste. After 5 years in college I have learned so much, but just wonder if I should have had better priorities.

Maybe I'm just expecting too much out of college. Nevertheless, I will continue searching and hope and pray that I find what I am supposed to be doing next year.

Appalachia 2012 Service Trip

Appalachia. An area that began a journey that would slowly unfold into what I consider my life. Last week was my last (forseable) trip to  Appalachia. This trip has had many ups and downs this year but over all I have loved my stay in Williamsberg, KY.

This place has a lot of meaning in what I would consider my life today and many philosophies that I follow have roots here in this place. Passion for life, appreciation for simplicity, love for family and friends, kindness, hope, and faith are all thinks that I truly see in the people every day I am down here.

I wasn't really sure what I would find this year in my trip to KY, but many of the lessons I have learned were reemphasized coming down here. The best part about this trip though was the people and learning more about the history and reasons the people are suppressed. This helped me really realize how big the gap between rich and poor truly is and how cruel and thoughtless people and companies can be. It's truly a sad thought and extremely overwhelming when  helping is all you want to do.

But how do we solve problems like inequality, social change, and lack of motivation? I don't know. The more I dig deeper into the worlds problems the more of a need I see for people to stand up and speak out. The funny part is, people already are! And it seems like little or no change occurs. As you can see this idea leads down a very dark and pessimistic view of humanity, one where I do not dare travel.

One thing that I have learned though in the last year is that the more educated you become about a topic the more you empower those around you to do something. To stand up, to fight against injustice, and make a difference in the world. To sit back and complain about the broken world that we live in does not help the problem. Rather if you believe in something or change needs to occur, quite complaining and do something about it!

I plan to, do you?

Friday, March 9, 2012

One year from now

The American dream: To get married, get a good job, and raise a family in the land of opportunity. So what do you do if that isn't desirable to you? For me it wasn't so much "desirable" as "not the right time" and because of that I am at a loss what to do after college. All of my friends know what they want to do after college. Some have jobs, some are volunteering, most are getting married, and I have yet to make any commitment.

In my search of what I should do after college I have been turned down twice by an employer and a volunteer agency because "I don't know what I want to do." Apparently I can't make a god enough argument to them (or to myself) on why I should commit to them. So what do you do if you have no plans after college and absolutely no idea what you want to do? If you have no starting point but rather a dream that you cannot figure out how to make a reality?

So whats my dream? I don't know... THATS the kicker. Recently I have been watching/researching/reading about the inequality in our world. Being from a small town in Iowa none of this stuff ever really occured to me. The biggest "poverty" I saw were people who made bad life choices and addiction seems to be their best friend. Only recently in  my last few years of college have I learned of the major inequality in our world which by all means is unacceptable.

To me (as much as I hate to admit it.. maybe that will be another blog post) technology creates a tipping point or way that we can speak out globally for the first time in the history of humanity. We can come together as a global nation and fight the unacceptable acts that are in our world. Technology can create publicity for causes, create medical diagnosis tools, educational tools, renewable resources, and a higher quality of living for the human race. Technology is key to overthrow government suppression, abusive leaders, and illiteracy. This is the cause I want to follow.

I don't really know what my dream about all of this is though, because there IS a tipping point where technology becomes useless, in a quality of living sense. That's where I struggle. How to I push forward the very thing that is taking over our world? I suppose that's a question I should ask later.

So where does that put me? I have no idea. I suppose I continue to apply to places and pray that one thing leads to another. I know dreams don't happen overnight and I think that's something I just need to accept. I don't know where I will be one year from now, but I hope it is in pursue of this dream.