Choose job fulfillment over salary

Going into my final year of college, the clock is ticking, so I have come to the unfortunate realization I have to find a job and work at it for the rest of my life.

At the tender age of 20, I have about 50 years of non-stop working ahead. Oh, joy.

For as long as I can remember, my mindset was if I have to work for the rest of my life, my misery should be compensated by a big paycheck. I always thought living comfortably would eventually bring me all the happiness in the world.

I have had several life experiences in which I have been given the chance to test the waters and found the excitement of working with a big name is only temporary. All I am left with are the bragging rights.

I have been a part of several mission trips and I have seen firsthand the needs in this world. I have felt an incredible sense of fulfillment from seeing the joy on the face of a woman with absolutely nothing, given a house to shelter her children. Knowing I can be a part of something so much greater gave me something beyond bragging rights, but how could I apply this to my public relations  major?

This past summer, somehow I was led to Single Mothers Outreach in Santa Clarita, California. SMO is a nonprofit organization that seeks to empower single parents to become self-sustaining by providing classes and resources to push them to thrive.

My job was to bring attention to the organization by writing press releases, newsletters and managing social media in order to attract people to become a part of this team that changes lives. Although I may not be personally providing the necessary resources, I was able to play a part in the process of improving someone’s life.

Seeing the joy on struggling mothers’ faces when they received bundles of diapers or stopped by the office just to let us know they are back on their feet showed me this is what I am meant to do.

I am meant to use the skills I have been given to improve someone’s life. Although nonprofits do not necessarily lead to the largest paychecks, they bring so much more to life.

Regardless of major, a person can find a way to use his or her skills to make a difference. I have chosen to use my career in a way in which I can serve others because this way I can do something with meaning. Choose a career that will bring joy and fulfillment beyond numbers on paper.

About Darlene Mercado

Opinion Editor

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