My brother will be graduating from college in the spring and he’s trying to figure out what he’s going to do next. Obviously college is the expected next step. Or maybe DJ school?
Being almost eleven years ahead of him I’ve been thinking a lot about what I’ve learned in that time, what I would have done differently, and what is the best advice I can give him. In my own experience, I went to college and to grad school, racked up huge student loan debt, and now I make a living doing work I’m passionate about yet is completely unrelated to either of my degrees.
I’m not alone, either. Studies show 40% of all college grads today work in jobs that don’t require a college degree. Unfortunately few of them can say they’re doing something they’re passionate about. Is this what I want for my brother? Am I going to encourage him to rack up massive debt to get a job he hates that he’ll be overqualified for?
It’s hard because college is still part of the script that society feeds us, but my answer is no.
Instead I’ve been encouraging my brother to explore the idea of apprenticeship. Rather than spending tens if not hundreds of thousands of dollars to go to a university for four years and hope that somewhere along the way he’ll stumble across what he’s passionate about, why not put himself in an environment where he’s much more likely to find it?
I told him to find someone he looks up to that is working in an industry he’s interested and ask what he can do for them. Go sweep the floors at night. Do the dirty work. Pitch in wherever you can. Simply be in the environment, learn as much as possible, get involved, and see if it’s for you.
In my brother’s case he really likes fashion so we found a few custom suit shops in our city and simply emailed them saying “I’m a high school student thinking about going into the fashion industry, can I come in after school and find a way to pitch in?” It’s not a fool-proof plan for a career, but it’s a foot in the door that will bring him one step closer to finding out what he wants to do.
The cool thing about apprenticeship and this hands-on approach to finding your calling is that we are so connected today that possibilities are endless. You can email or tweet just about anyone. If you have an offer or an idea that is compelling enough, you can get the attention of nearly anyone.
This includes the DJ world. If you think that you would like to become a DJ, the absolute best way to do so is to learn from the people who have already done it and are currently doing it. Find people that you can ask questions to, people that you can study or imitate. Once again, in the digital world we live in this is easier than ever.
DJ Courses Online is the perfect example. For a low fee you can plug yourself into a network of professional and experienced DJs. You won’t be sweeping floors and cleaning the bathrooms like a grunt apprentice, but you will have expert instructors on your screen right in your own living room. It’s an amazing leap forward that wasn’t possible just a few years ago.
Now you don’t have to toil for years to get to a level where you can start hanging around a club to meet other DJs. Instead there are people that will begin coaching and guiding you from day one. If you’re serious about learning how to become a DJ it’s unbeatable.