DR ROBERT WALLACE: Teen wonders about future income and debt | News

DR. WALLACE: My aspirations in life are pretty ordinary, but today they seem out of reach. Right now I’m 18 and I hope to one day get married, buy a house and have kids, but I can’t imagine how I will ever be able to afford all the expenses that would entail.

Home ownership seems out of reach in most US states given current housing market conditions. And once I graduate from college in a few years, I will have student loan debt that will take me years to pay off. I know I’m still young and shouldn’t necessarily have to worry about all these things right now, but I feel like my financial situation will never be good enough for me to achieve my dreams. more basic unless I find a way to make way more money than I ever thought I would have to make.

So now it worries me about my career choices, which then makes me worry about what major I should pursue in college. I plan to research which streams produce graduates who earn the most money right out of college. There are a lot of careers I’m potentially interested in, but I don’t think they’ll end up paying me enough to get me out of debt, so maybe I should go for a big corporate job, isn’t it? it not? Does that mean something like Business Administration would be the best major for me? — Worried about debts, via email

WORRIED ABOUT DEBT: My advice is not to choose your college major simply based on which one will give you the highest starting salary after college.

As a young person in 2022, it will be hard enough to know what the market will look like in our fast-paced world when you graduate around 2026.

The speed of change in many aspects of life is far greater today than at any time in human history. So much is changing so quickly today in four years.

From now, four years of change could be similar to 10 to 12 years of change just a decade ago. Therefore, I suggest you follow your passions, follow your interests, or follow your hobbies. Look around for potential majors you could study and see which one makes you really excited to learn more and deepen your knowledge of that particular subject.

It is important to have the desire and passion to learn a subject based on your interests as this will maintain and improve your ability to read and consume more on a subject you find interesting rather than one you are simply trying to reach for the biggest entry-level salary. .

Another point to consider is that some people become experts over time in various fields. If you really have a passion for a particular subject, your learning curve will quickly accelerate as you progress. In five to 10 years, you can really master a niche that can ultimately become much more financially rewarding 10, 20, or even 30 years after graduation than just pursuing a degree in business administration, for example.

Also note that there is absolutely nothing wrong with pursuing a business administration degree! All I’m saying is just make sure that the business world in general or finding out how to become an entrepreneurial wizard is your true passion before entering that particular field.

Ultimately, your ability to earn money in a career has many facets, so step forward with confidence in your abilities and passions and trust that you will be able to make ends meet. with time. I have faith in you and in all hard working teenagers. Create a plan that interests and motivates you, then work that plan into a field of study that you are truly passionate about.

DR. Wallace: I just read one of your old columns where you said that alcohol is a “depressant” substance! Let me tell you something: When my buddies and I light up with a few drinks on a Saturday night, we’re anything but depressed. I would even say that it makes my good friend “Bingo” more than happy! He goes from being the quiet, brooding type he is all week to being the life of the party! He even tells jokes, which he would never do during the week. So I say you are completely wrong. — Party Guy, via email

PARTY GUYS: Alcohol is indeed a depressant and is considered as such because it slows down the central nervous system and the vital activities it controls. Over time, the sedative effects of alcohol outweigh the initial euphoric rush that some like you and your friends experience soon after drinking it.

I stand by my previous comments and respectfully suggest that you do further research on this topic.

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