By ALISON CHURCH
At such a young age, it can be an incredible amount of pressure for a high schooler to figure out what they want to do in college and for the rest of their life. Last Thursday the 26th of September, four adults working in a variety of different job fields paid the school a visit to inspire students and provide their wisest advice. They spoke about what they loved most about their job, and each gave their own varying career philosophies; at the core of their advice, they all united under the single belief that the most important consideration is to find what you love, and then pursue it.
One of the most enthusiastic out of the speakers was Michelle Heberling, a business owner/serial entrepreneur whose job is to constantly be coming up with new business ideas, and is currently the owner of Suppers On, a company that provides locally sourced seasonal meals to pro athletes. In college she had a different job working as a consultant for struggling companies, which eventually led her to travel around the world. She happily stated how her favorite thing is “to get an idea, and then make it happen,” which the experience of consulting helped her to do later on in life. She stressed the importance of understanding business as an entrepreneur because you need to know how to “manage the people and the time.”
Raul vega was open with how bizarre and unpredictable his job is, giving a brief background to how he managed to break into the film industry and work with Han Zimmer, one of the most famous and skilled music composers in the film industry. Not only is he a movie soundtrack & score composer, but he also works hard on his called “Rose Drive” based on the familiar street in Benicia. He graduated from Benicia High school in 2005, went on to DVC for one year and then transferred to Cal State Long Beach where he studied music and eventually landed an internship at Han Zimmer’s studio. When asked what his biggest takeaway from college was, he responded that it was the discipline of working hard rather than actual skills he could apply to his current job; “that being said, understanding the mechanics of music and terminology” was crucial too. In a job that changes almost daily, he’s constantly recording, editing, and collaborating on music unique to Han Zimmer’s studio and plays a great role in influencing the ever changing music trends in the film industry.
Jenny Bledsoe, the Vice President of Human Resources at Meyers Corporation oversees recruiting the talent they need to run the company. She recalls entering an ice skating competition after graduating and then transferring from DVC to San Francisco state where she got her industrial-organizational psychology bachelor’s degree. She first got experience in the human resources world by training and hiring at a restaurant, and made her way up from there. She agreed with Michelle about enjoying the ability to help other people, and even said that by the time she retires she’ll have enough experience and stories to write a book about her career.
Electrical & Instrumentation Department Manager at Valero Refinery, Danny Zepeda, opened with stating that he doesn’t do his job for the pay rate, but that he does it for the passion; he would much rather receive lower pay for a job that he loves than receive higher pay and be miserable. In order to get where he is today, he focused heavily on math, physics, and chemistry in high school, and went on to study electrical engineering at Cal Poly. He stated that the internships he had in his senior year of highschool went on to influence his decision to get into the “power side of electrical engineering.”
While Danny Zepeda and Jenny Bledsoe preferred the stability and the retirement plan for their jobs, Raul and Michelle gravitated towards the customization, the chaos, and the unpredictability of their jobs and the option to change up their careers to explore their own potential. They all stressed the significance of finding what makes you as an individual happy; and while working as a consultant made Michelle good money, she never truly felt like she was contributing something to the world. She can say with confidence now that any job, whether part time or full time will allow you to gain important skill sets that will help you for the rest of your life. During college, during your 20s, and even after there’s still time to let yourself figure out what it is you want to do for yourself and the world. Ultimately, they all looked back on their career paths without regret and with nothing but hope for their future, encouraging students to do the same.