Would you’ve the courage to change your career and return to school if you were in your early or late 50’s? Would you study for and pass a college exam? Both Jack and Sam, that are inside their 50’s, chose to make major career changes by becoming teachers, among senior school science, the other of elementary age children.
Layoffs and business decline generated thoughts of “what do I really do now with my entire life?” Jack had worked as a chemist in his first career, and even includes a master’s degree in chemistry. During his years of employment at one company, Jack took on more and more computer duties and eventually transitioned out of chemistry into IS. Years later he was laid removed from another company as the head of the IS department. The notion of teaching never crossed his mind until a pal suggested he apply for a six-week position teaching chemistry. “25 years back I would have laughed at the suggestion of being a teacher. The greatest surprise is that I like teaching “.
How easy can it be to come to a decision of this magnitude? Sam, who’s currently 59 years, wishes he had done it ten years sooner. ” I wish someone had blown in my own ear what’you find a way do this’and maybe I would have considered it earlier “.Although he owned their own business for quite some time, it hadn’t been very satisfying. Finally, economics helped him opt to close the company and look for something which had more meaning. As a former captain in the Air Force, Sam found a program for veterans that helped him with the expense of his education for his new career.
Jack had the help of a vocation coach who helped him see possibilities and extend of his comfort zone. “I can’t emphasize a lot of that without my coach I’d nevertheless be sitting at home, sending out resumes.”
For both men, money wasn’t the only motivator inside their decision to turn to teaching. Rather, a look for meaning and purpose led the choice.’Teaching is definitely different and challenging” said Sam, “The elementary kids are fun, interesting and always smiling. Money was easy, so my motivation is how do I help them in some form-by asking questions, offering guidance, giving answers. This certainly is not boring and very self-satisfying for me teach to one. No day is exactly the same even though I am teaching exactly the same thing.” Sam proceeded to say he found teaching so much more important than selling a product. His job provides a way to be innovative as he makes great efforts to keep his classes interesting and not repetitious.
Both men started their exploration by doing some substitute teaching to see if this was truly a choice inside their career path. Sam also taught business courses at an area community college. He found, however, he preferred working together with elementary children rather than adults and had more patience with the kids.
Although both men are happy with their decision to go back to school, this process hasn’t been without challenges. “The initial semester was rough,” stated Jack. ” It had been 26 years since college. I had to learn how to study and organize myself and it took some time to find yourself in an idea, it didn’t come back all of a sudden. I had to have through the first confusion and the classes were not easy. Another students had just turn out of senior school and knew how to examine and take a test.” Sam agreed that studying for and taking tests is really a big challenge.” It takes me longer to learn and recalling information sometimes is difficult “.
And what is it like to be in a class, learning with students that are 19-21 years? Jack is surprised at how well he’s been accepted by younger students. He did have an incident when he taught his first lab as a teaching assistant. Among the students assumed he was a professor and addressed him as one. Jack was quick to allow the student know he too was a student.
Despite having the typical age of first retirement at 57, neither man foresees retiring in the near future. As with many baby boomers, these men are choosing to continue working. Sam feels that teaching offers him some flexibility and options in later retirement years. As an example, if he chooses to relocate, he’d manage to get a teaching job in the brand new location. Jack advises,” I genuinely believe that you’ve to have open mind at my age to say that I may need to make a move else to move forward with my life.”
Joanne Waldman is really a trailblazer in global learning and personal/career and retirement coaching so her alma mater recognized her with the Citation of Merit for Outstanding Achievement and Meritorious Service.
In 2001 she started New Perspective Coaching. Previously, Joanne consulted with Fortune 500 companies. Joanne trains coaches for International Coach Academy and Retirement Options. Awarded the Master Career Counselor title, Joanne also earned her Professional Certified Coach designation.