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Briareos
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07 Jan 2014, 3:59 pm

so I started college in September, currently taking the base IT course called microcomputer Systems. I went into this course feeling a little unsure about whether or not I wanted to do this, as I had attempted to take this online networking course before school started. My parents signed me up for this course when they saw a groupon deal and were trying to give me a bit of a head start. However, about a quarter way through I just completely lost interest. Currently, I feel that's what's happening with me right now.

At first, I hadn't no problem understanding the basic things they were teaching me as we started out with all the hardware stuff; you know, actually fixing computer problems and troubleshooting Windows operating systems like Windows 7 and XP. I fell a little bit behind and I panicked, thinking I was not enjoying the course. I went to the school counsellor and told him this, and also explaining how I've kind of developed a love for auto tuning/auto mechanics. He suggested that I shadow the auto mechanics class for a day to see if I liked it, and to help me decide whether or not this would be something I would want to pursue as a career or just something as a hobby.

When that day came, I enjoyed myself quite a bit. Watching people fix the cars was kind of cool. by the end of the day, I was almost certain that I knew what I wanted to do; I wanted to drop out of the IT course and sign up for auto mechanics. Then I became unsure again, for some reason I felt bad for wanting to leave the IT course after wanting to do this since high school. In fact, I got into the more technical aspect of computers for a want to mod the PC version of a certain car theft game *cough*GTA SA*cough*. From that point, I gained a small knowledge base on how computers work, how to code a little, a slight love for 3D modelling and how to do some very basic troubleshooting for computers. so anyways I convinced myself that I could do both, that I could stay in the IT course, complete it, walk away with some certificates and then take auto mechanics the following year.

So I continued with the IT course, managing to pass the final exam for the first unit despite not really thoroughly studying for it. I also had a final exam for Windows 7 which we were doing as a separate unit, I did even worse on that as I pretty much had nothing on that unit studied. It was enough of a workload for me to study for the one unit nevermind studying for both.....well, actually, I probably could have, but the motivation wasn't quite there. I'm also kind of bad with time management.
Dang, I keep going off-topic.
Well kind of, I guess.
Anyways…
So after these exams we moved on to the networking side of IT. Again, I didn't really read the first few chapters and I started falling behind again. What they had to teach didn't seem quite that interesting to me I think and that made it easier for me to brush it off and not study. there are many weekends where I had intended to study and catch up, but I just.... Didn't. It was almost like I was doing that groupon networking course all over again. It just appeared to be (studying) tedious and not enjoyable.

Now it's almost 2 months past the start point of the unit and I am about 1 unit behind of the rest of the class. what is being taught in the lectures and what is being worked on in class is pretty much lost on me, as I am nowhere near where the rest of the class is in terms of acquired knowledge base. Because of this I've lost petty much all reason to care about what is being taught or to even catch up. However part of me still feels that I need to do this, that I am too far in to the course to give up and quit now. I believe that if I were to quit right now, it would have been a total waste of both my time and my parents money, especially after I had just gone through this a couple months prior and I decided to stay in this course. So right now, I am frantically trying to catch up to the rest of the class, though part of me knows that I won't be able to fully achieve this. It's like high school all over again, where a lack of interest and slacking has put me weeks behind the rest of the classes' progress and workload.

Part of me feels like I'm just being lazy, that I can do this if I set my mind to it and work my butt off. I accuse myself of being lazy all the time, thinking other people would be saying the same thing. But is it even worth doing if I can't seem to put all of my heart into it? Is it worth doing if what I'm trying to force myself to learn isn't fully interesting to me? Should I be feeling like this is something I want to do; like going to college is someplace I want to be? Because right now, I don't think it quite feels like that...

What I am certain of though, is what I want from life and I don't think my goals are too much to ask for. I'd like to find a job that I ideally enjoy enough that it doesn't even feel like work, or at the very least is work that I would not hate doing. I want to move west to someplace in Alberta or BC and find a decent place I can call my home. Having to live with my parents in the Canadian prairies is far from enjoyable, especially from a skiing perspective. I want to have enough time to do the hobbies I enjoy, e.g. Skiing, MTB biking, fishing, drawing/artwork, being able to own a car which I would likely want to customize a bit.

Now if I were to quit this course, I'm not 100% positive on whether or not I should take auto mechanics. Maybe there would be another career I could be good at that would pay slightly better? I know what I am good at though; for the most part I believe I'm pretty good at solving technology related problems, just maybe not so much of the networking side. In general I like to fix things, and I like to work with my hands. When it comes to learning new stuff I like to see it be done and then be able to do it myself. I consider myself fairly good at drawing, and back when I had time I was pretty good at modelling complex objects in Google sketchup and Blender. this last skill I'm not too sure how much real-world application potential it has. I really only see it being useful for wanting to get into the videogame industry, but that's a very tough job market to get into. Maybe I should just go see a career guidance counsellor...

The funny thing is, my life feels a lot like this book I remember reading back in grade 9. Basically the main character got into computers in middle school (like I did), and wanted to move to California to get a job in Silicon Valley. He bought a junker car to move his way across the country. Of course it broke down at a point. With no one around to help him fix the car, he eventually learned how to fix it himself and grew to like fixing cars as he made his way across the country. By the time he reached California, he didn't even want to do anything that involved his original intentions for moving west and instead became an auto mechanic.

Holy crap, that was a lot of text. I've kind of been holding these thoughts in for almost 2 months so I apologize for this blog like post. everything that's been on my mind just basically spewed itself out. So because of this.....

so am I lazy? What should I do, should I continue with this course and try to catch up or should I consider another option? I just can't decide.....

thank you very much if you actually read all of this. Again I'm really sorry this turned out so long.



zer0netgain
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07 Jan 2014, 9:15 pm

IT careers are oversold. Few make the big bucks, and many that do well put in a ghastly amount of hours.

On the other hand, a competent and honest mechanic can be worth his weight in gold.



Briareos
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10 Jan 2014, 9:28 pm

Well due to my overall loss in progressionwith the rest of the class, I have exited the course and lost the $$$$ spent on it.

I feel really disheartened, and have lost even more confidence/direction in what I want to do with my life...at least in terms of a career. I don't even want to take the automotive course for fear of a similar situation. I just... I don't know what what I want to do or what I'm even good at anymore. I would really like some career counselling but I nor my parents can afford it.

Worst of all is how much I am blaming myself for this outcome. If only I studied, if only I motivated myself better....



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13 Jan 2014, 2:34 am

Have you looked into on-campus counselors? They usually help students for drastically lowered rates; my campus offers standard, couples and group counseling for $15 an hour, compared to $60-100+ for an outside professional. As far as your career, what is your aspie special interest? Can you make a job out of that? I would sign up for the auto mechanics course and sit in it for the first week or so before the withdrawal/refund date comes, and make a decision then as to whether or not you feel it's worth staying a whole semester for. If it's not, you can drop it early and get your money back to use for a different class. Your student/major advisor will probably be able to help you come up with some ideas too, and they don't charge for that. Just make an appointment with him and see what he says. That's what they're there for, and I'll bet you'd be surprised by how many undeclared students you have on campus.


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thewhitrbbit
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13 Jan 2014, 9:25 am

An honest mechanic is hard to find. You could always do it and see what happens. You wouldn't be the first person in the world to change careers in life.



SecretSavant
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14 Jan 2014, 1:06 am

You're an excellent writer.

I rarely read such lengthy posts. How long did it take you to write the OP?

You should consider yourself above the geek squad or grease monkey level. There are jobs that pay a lot more, for those who can write a decent report. :wink:


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Briareos
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18 Jan 2014, 10:07 pm

SecretSavant wrote:
You're an excellent writer.

I rarely read such lengthy posts. How long did it take you to write the OP?

You should consider yourself above the geek squad or grease monkey level. There are jobs that pay a lot more, for those who can write a decent report. :wink:


Thank you, it took me maybe 1 1/2 -2hrs. to 'write', though I was using Dragon NaturallySpeaking so it halved my normally slow and meticulous typing.
Do you think I should look into being a writer?

Funny thing is, English was always my worst subject. It was not because I was an inadequate wordsmith or an appalling speller, it was because I had trouble analyzing assignment literature beyond the text. Also if the assignment didn't interest me I didn't do it.


Also, I think some aspects of auto mechanics require some intelligence and nerdiness, even. A skilled ECU mapper seems like one of those hard to find tradesmen from what Ive heard.

StarTrekker wrote:
Have you looked into on-campus counselors? They usually help students for drastically lowered rates; my campus offers standard, couples and group counseling for $15 an hour, compared to $60-100+ for an outside professional.


I have not, and I don't think I saw any in the school; it is a technical college. I can maybe find campus counselors at either the more major college or the university.

StarTrekker wrote:
As far as your career, what is your aspie special interest? Can you make a job out of that?


Well, the 2 things I obsess the most over are skiing and cars. With skiing, it's so important to me that it's the source of my life goals. However, I can't make it a career (not possible all year/not skilled enough to go pro), I've started making it a job by becoming a CSIA ski instructor. Not sure if I'll stick with it, but I like to have it as a skill in my pocket.

My love of cars came from racing and a fascination with auto tuning. I then got obsessed with the Nissan Silvia S14, and I absorbed all the info about it and how to make it better. Making a job or even career out of cars is a no brainer effort.

StarTrekker wrote:
I would sign up for the auto mechanics course and sit in it for the first week or so before the withdrawal/refund date comes, and make a decision then as to whether or not you feel it's worth staying a whole semester for. If it's not, you can drop it early and get your money back to use for a different class. Your student/major advisor will probably be able to help you come up with some ideas too, and they don't charge for that. Just make an appointment with him and see what he says. That's what they're there for, and I'll bet you'd be surprised by how many undeclared students you have on campus.


OK I can try that.



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21 Jan 2014, 7:39 pm

I've had a similar issue between an interest in bioengineering and an interest in software. Personally, I'm looking to learn both, but one has to be dominant. But I've been considering how knowledge in one could have influences in the other. You are in a better position to do this sort of thing because IT and mechanics are more closely related than my interests. I'd suggest you pursue the mechanics and look at a minor in the IT area. Since more and more vehicles are incorporating fancy software stuff like voice-activation, the combination could give you an edge in getting hired.


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