2016 Essay Competition - View all entries

Interest and Aptitude

Alice Ayeni - Lagos, Nigeria

Career choice is about the most important decision every individual must make in life. It is otherwise known as Vocation or Calling. The career of a man determines so much about him, i.e his status, his colleagues or friends and location in some instances.

Career can be defined as a type of work or way of life that one believes is especially suitable for him/her. Career must be tailored towards fulfillment and satisfaction in life. If a career is not suitable, it can't bring satisfaction later in life.

As a teenager, I was neither fortunate to be guided in choosing a career nor exposed to the services of counsellors. I just picked a career based on my dream but while working with this, I saw myself murmuring and grumbling all day. It is as if my interest is in something else entirely. This quest in me for satisfaction made me sat down, sought help, re-strategies and retrained to be in the profession I'm in today which makes me happy every second of the day. Thank God for career mobility.

The first thing I considered when choosing this career was "INTEREST" - that thing I don't get tired doing, that thing I enjoys doing, that arouses my curiosity, concern or attention. Interest is the expression of individual desire to learn something. For the fear of not making mistake the second time, I took interest inventory test to save myself the assumption.

I also wrote aptitude test to be sure of success when trained. Aptitude is the innate potential that can be nurtured to blossom when exposed to training. It reveals chances of being successful in a given career.

I also sat down to analyze myself, look at those things that I like and the ones I hate, my disposition to issues, temperament and the likes. I got to know the existence and importance of personality test and I did it.

I know I'm above average intelligence and will do well virtually in anything I set out to do. Intelligence is the capacity of the mind to understand principles, truths, facts or meaning; acquire knowledge and applying the knowledge. It is the ability to learn and comprehend. Intelligence may be high, low or average.

Consideration of my performance in the subjects required to pursue this career at higher level is another thing that I did consider because I know that academic performance has bearing on career choice.

Moreover, the realities on ground in my country were very important to consider in choosing my career. Having at the back of my mind that unemployment is an issue, I opted for a career that will set me on the edge of being creative, impacting my society positively in my own little way, and be a responsible member of the society.

Working environment and location are very important to me. I have preference for working in the city, and a place that is not too far from my family. I considered the fact that my career is on demand in the environment I intend to work.

Ability is another factor I didn't joke with. This is because my former career required physical ability which I know I don't have but I know I have mental ability. This made me to choose a career that require more of intellectual work, working with ideas and figures.

In summary, the factors I considered when choosing my career were:

  • Interest
  • Aptitude
  • Personality
  • Intelligence
  • Academic performance
  • Situation of the Country
  • Working Environment and Location
  • Ability

Career choice is one of the most important decisions to make in life and is better to get it right from the onset. At first I made mistake because I wasn't guided. Counsel has brought me to the right path and I'm grateful for the second chance. Now I get satisfaction from what I do. Adolescents need to seek proper counselling to get it right and live a fulfill life.