What comes next?
It’s a daunting question we college students must perpetually face, asked of us expectantly by parents, peers, professors and ourselves. Some of us face the future with bright eyes, eager to step out into the professional world. Some wish to dodge such responsibilities for as long as possible. Others already find themselves juggling work and school. Linking all of us together is an often contradictory set of emotions about the future — uncertainty, curiosity, stress, excitement.
Career fairs provide students with opportunities to connect with employers across a range of professions. But there is also something to be learned from one’s peers — students who, like you, will soon enter the workforce.
This issue seeks to provide readers with insight into both. You’ll find tips on how to navigate resources at UC Berkeley that help you prepare for life after college, accounts of labor markets and models, as well as reflections from fellow students on the paths ahead.
We hope these stories help you, too, discover your way.
Regardless of what skills students are learning in school, the Career Center helps students learn the skills required to find a job.
— Beatrice Aronson
It’s easy to boil the work model down to plain economics: Certain capital, resources and investments have to be weeded out if they don’t prove economically viable.
— Aarthi Muthukumar
I loved hair, and I still do, but in focusing most of my life on hairstyling, I felt I was missing out on the opportunity to explore career paths during my youth.
— Amanda Ayano Hayami
Sometimes I feel like I’m playing dress-up in my hospital scrubs, like I’m pretending to be a fully functioning adult even though I’m still a kid.
— Aarthi Muthukumar
For more than a century, coffee breaks have allowed companies to extract more value from their employees. But maybe our dependence on the beverage has allowed us to extract more value from ourselves, too.
— Sarah Siegel
In typical fashion, I have decided to simply let future me make the decision between further education and finding a job.
— Amber Soto
While you can work on high-impact projects at either a corporation or a startup, the pace of work is something that can have an impact on whether you feel fulfilled in your job.
— Amrita Bhasin
Even though you may grimace at the struggles that increase in your life as you grow, these challenges serve as proof that you are adulting.
— Adriana Temprano
Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, restaurant workers have faced unemployment, low wages and abuse from customers and employers.
— Rina Rossi
I like computer science, and I like entertainment. I can do both. Or I can do one right now and another later.
— Mallika Chennupaty
What terrifies me most as the reality of adulthood grows near is not the choice I made to pursue a life in writing, but rather the notion that it now may be too late to do something different.
— Jericho Rajninger