What comes next?

It’s a daunting question we college students must perpetually face, asked of us expectantly by parents, peers, professors and ourselves. Some of us face the future with bright eyes, eager to step out into the professional world. Some wish to dodge such responsibilities for as long as possible. Others already find themselves juggling work and school. Linking all of us together is an often contradictory set of emotions about the future — uncertainty, curiosity, stress, excitement.

Career fairs provide students with opportunities to connect with employers across a range of professions. But there is also something to be learned from one’s peers — students who, like you, will soon enter the workforce.

This issue seeks to provide readers with insight into both. You’ll find tips on how to navigate resources at UC Berkeley that help you prepare for life after college, accounts of labor markets and models, as well as reflections from fellow students on the paths ahead.

We hope these stories help you, too, discover your way.

 


Making the most of UC Berkeley’s career fairs

photo of the career center buildingRegardless of what skills students are learning in school, the Career Center helps students learn the skills required to find a job.

— Beatrice Aronson


Money, madness, misogyny: A history of the US work model

Illustration about career and genderIt’s easy to boil the work model down to plain economics: Certain capital, resources and investments have to be weeded out if they don’t prove economically viable.

— Aarthi Muthukumar


Fusing passion with profession

I loved hair, and I still do, but in focusing most of my life on hairstyling, I felt I was missing out on the opportunity to explore career paths during my youth.

— Amanda Ayano Hayami


Patterns of a part-time adult

Photo of a phone alarm app with specific alarms setSometimes I feel like I’m playing dress-up in my hospital scrubs, like I’m pretending to be a fully functioning adult even though I’m still a kid.

— Aarthi Muthukumar


Who does the coffee break really serve?

photo of a full coffee mug on a tableFor more than a century, coffee breaks have allowed companies to extract more value from their employees. But maybe our dependence on the beverage has allowed us to extract more value from ourselves, too.

— Sarah Siegel


Keeping my options open

In typical fashion, I have decided to simply let future me make the decision between further education and finding a job.

— Amber Soto


Pros and cons of working at a startup or corporation

photo of the Skydeck building

While you can work on high-impact projects at either a corporation or a startup, the pace of work is something that can have an impact on whether you feel fulfilled in your job.

— Amrita Bhasin


Life hacks for growing up at UC Berkeley

Even though you may grimace at the struggles that increase in your life as you grow, these challenges serve as proof that you are adulting.

— Adriana Temprano


Restaurant employees are essential workers yet often denied basic needs

Illustration of people walking out of a restaurantThroughout the COVID-19 pandemic, restaurant workers have faced unemployment, low wages and abuse from customers and employers.

— Rina Rossi


Writing my way forward

I like computer science, and I like entertainment. I can do both. Or I can do one right now and another later.

Mallika Chennupaty


Where has the time gone?

What terrifies me most as the reality of adulthood grows near is not the choice I made to pursue a life in writing, but rather the notion that it now may be too late to do something different.

— Jericho Rajninger


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