Students

Unsure about path to take next.

[OP]
Member
May 1, 2009
336 posts
2 upvotes

Unsure about path to take next.

Hi guys i need some advice about what steps to take next. For some background info i completed high school in 2014 but didn't have the greatest marks and mostly applied and college credits. I went to college but dropped out after 1 year since i didn't like the program. So after that i've been just working but wanted to go back to school but was unsure about what program would be best for me. I was thinking about upgrading my high school marks through ILC to get into university but would that take up too much time? Or should i just take something like a general arts and science program in college and use that as a stepping stone to university?
12 replies
Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2013
1818 posts
463 upvotes
Woodbridge
What is your end goal? What type of work do you want to do? University degrees aren't what they used to be, especially in the arts. You might be better off finding a technical or trades program in college - it'll cost you less, take less time, you'll be earning money sooner, and in all honesty, you'd probably be earning more than if you have some run of the mill BA.
Sr. Member
Jan 8, 2009
675 posts
306 upvotes
GTA
If you're truly interested in university, U of T has this academic bridging program available: https://wdw.utoronto.ca/academic-bridging

Other universities may have the same sort of thing. I would look into those kinds of programs and only upgrade your high school marks if required.
Member
Jul 22, 2015
232 posts
55 upvotes
Toronto, ON
Go into the trades, many trades can easily make $100k/yr.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Dec 8, 2007
4675 posts
877 upvotes
OP - your job/goal, right now, at this stage of your life, is to make yourself valuable to employers. You can do this through schooling, experience, or a combination of both.

You want to set yourself up for future success and options later on in life by spending the time now to gain skills and experiences employers value.

Considering the trades? Thats some schooling and what, 5 years of apprenticeship, before you get your seal and can work almost anywhere (some one with deeper knowledge of the skilled trades feel free to chime in) - point is, you start now, by first going to school and spending those years as a apprentice gaining skills and experience .... until youre validated through a seal/certificate and become even more valuable. That opens up options - you can go work elsewhere for more money or a lower cost of living, or not, or start a business, or not, etc.

Same with considering an office job in <insert X field. Thats likely a few years of schooling, maybe more if you're going to university, and then landing an entry level job somewhere and then .... 1-2yrs in that job before the next one ..... and then another 1-2yrs in that job before the next one .... and then you'll be 3-5yrs in and you'll start looking at an entry-level middle management job, aka you're first "real job". Take banking as an example because they suck in so many grads and its viewed as a safe bet. 4yrs undergrad and they start as an entry level call centre person or business analyst ..... after 2 yrs maybe they get 'Senior' added to their title ..... 2yrs in that job and maybe a 'Manager' role comes up. That's arguably the first 'real' role with actual responsibility and autonomy, and it took ~4-5yrs to get there. Smash that role and then even more options open .... because you've accumulated valuable experiences in youre chosen field to be increasingly valuable to the organization (and other organizations) if you want to try something different.

Professions such a law, medicine, traditional relationship banking (i.e. investment banking), pharmacy, dentistry, etc. are much the same with an even more well defined hierarchy and path - the beginning is all about gaining as much knowledge, skills, and experience as possible as a foundation for later on options and success.

So what should you do? Borrowing from another post I made in the career forum ....
Probably stop asking for advice. People are full of garbage advice. Try having conversations. Have you talked with your parents - not the “tell me what to do talk”, the “this is what’s happening and how I am thinking about it what do you think talk”. Ditto for friends you trust and appreciate - not the “told you so” crew - and mentors, if you have one (not that need one btw).

And find some comfort in knowing that your situation is not unique in the slightest degree, that many of your peers are going through the exact same realization and struggle for next steps as you are, and that many people of these forums started in the exact same spot and made their way through it. And if they found their way through it so can you.
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Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2007
2617 posts
530 upvotes
Edmonton
Come to the trades. Get good at it and have experience. Work for 6 months. Make 100k. Travel for 6 months. Rinse and repeat
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Deal Addict
May 18, 2009
4506 posts
734 upvotes
Toronto
tmkf_patryk wrote:
Sep 11th, 2018 6:22 pm
Come to the trades. Get good at it and have experience. Work for 6 months. Make 100k. Travel for 6 months. Rinse and repeat
need trade school?
Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2007
2617 posts
530 upvotes
Edmonton
yesstyle wrote:
Sep 18th, 2018 11:30 am
need trade school?
For the good money yes. Look at it like university. You finish 4 years of uni, you start off at 50k-70k?

You get your jman ticket(usually 4 years maybe 3). You get 80-150k first year, maybe more. All depends how hard you work.

Your real learning is once you get your jman ticket. Once you get experience with it, then 6 months 100k
warming up the earth 1 gas fill-up at a time...
You only live once, get a v8
Deal Addict
Mar 21, 2010
3900 posts
799 upvotes
Toronto
undertaker1562 wrote:
Sep 4th, 2018 1:03 am
Hi guys i need some advice about what steps to take next. For some background info i completed high school in 2014 but didn't have the greatest marks and mostly applied and college credits. I went to college but dropped out after 1 year since i didn't like the program. So after that i've been just working but wanted to go back to school but was unsure about what program would be best for me. I was thinking about upgrading my high school marks through ILC to get into university but would that take up too much time? Or should i just take something like a general arts and science program in college and use that as a stepping stone to university?
I mean this in a nice way, but if you weren't motivated to get good grades to get to where you wanted to be, and then dropped out of something you didn't really want to be in anyway, how would it be different this time? How would you remain motivated throughout a "general arts and science program" (which makes it sound like you don't care what it is) to excel and use it to jump into a university program you want to be in? What university program do you even want to be in?

I concur with others who say don't just sign away a few years of your life just to get a generic piece of paper. Then again, it's not too late - it's never too late - as long as it's really what you want to do. Don't just do it because 'people think I should graduate from university'.
Deal Addict
May 18, 2009
4506 posts
734 upvotes
Toronto
tmkf_patryk wrote:
Sep 18th, 2018 1:03 pm
For the good money yes. Look at it like university. You finish 4 years of uni, you start off at 50k-70k?

You get your jman ticket(usually 4 years maybe 3). You get 80-150k first year, maybe more. All depends how hard you work.

Your real learning is once you get your jman ticket. Once you get experience with it, then 6 months 100k
Which school would u recommend? And what's jman ticket? Sorry, new to this. TIA
Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2007
2617 posts
530 upvotes
Edmonton
yesstyle wrote:
Sep 18th, 2018 2:45 pm
Which school would u recommend? And what's jman ticket? Sorry, new to this. TIA
Each province is different, but here in Alberta you get an employer to hire you, then you work approx 10 months and go to school for 2 months, repeat 3 more times and thats 4 years.
Then write a 4th year exam to get your journeyman ticket (so you can only work in your province)
You also write the red seal exam (and can write anytime) which will allow you to work across canada. This exam is no memorising or anything, its all due with experience. I had questions about ships and fisheries as well as logging, oil and gas, agriculture, all sorts. But you sort of use what you learn/experience and transfer the skills over and it makes sense

An apprentice (anyone who isnt a journeyman but already has a trades book to log hours) can only work in his or her province, or outside but for a company who has a firm/office in his/her province.
You also get paid (obviously) for the 10 months at a percentage of the journeyman rate (give or take). Usually 1st year is 50%, 2nd is 60%, 3rd is 70, 4th is 80.

Also alot of people even if they live in bc/ontario, they come and do alberta apprenticeship as the pay is better and more opportunities (especially overtime in oil/gas).
warming up the earth 1 gas fill-up at a time...
You only live once, get a v8
Deal Addict
May 18, 2009
4506 posts
734 upvotes
Toronto
tmkf_patryk wrote:
Sep 18th, 2018 9:41 pm
Each province is different, but here in Alberta you get an employer to hire you, then you work approx 10 months and go to school for 2 months, repeat 3 more times and thats 4 years.
Then write a 4th year exam to get your journeyman ticket (so you can only work in your province)
so u get someone to hire you, work 10 months THEN go to school? Not go to school beforehand?
Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2007
2617 posts
530 upvotes
Edmonton
yesstyle wrote:
Sep 18th, 2018 10:35 pm
so u get someone to hire you, work 10 months THEN go to school? Not go to school beforehand?
Correct. I mean there are pre-employment courses but most people get in without them.

Let's say you already can do an oil change and brakes on a car. You have enough initiative, ambition and experience to probably go to a shop and ask to be a helper/worker.

Similarly if you have done your own basement including framing, drywalling and flooring, you could probably get foot in the door for a carpenter easier than if you haven't.

But there are people looking for helpers and at first you will carry tools and do tedious tasks (my first 3 days at engine shop I absolutely hated it. I stripped wires excess wires, cleaned the parts room and swept the shop floor). I don't think I would have lasted two weeks. But 4th day I started getting into oil changes and kept on going (I have rebuilt many engines before even starting the trade, so sweeping really sucked).


Best part about going to work before school is you work a month or two you see other people working. Maybe you really hate their job. U haven't lost any money on school. Just made a little money and lost some time
warming up the earth 1 gas fill-up at a time...
You only live once, get a v8

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