Wednesday, August 3, 2022

Career Advice in this Changing World

Where are we going?  Photo credit: Larry Fenwick

Last week's blog included advice for young people planning their future career in 1936, and I could not help thinking of that blog as I watched CBS Sunday Morning's program describing the technology that allows the face of an individual to be mapped in such a way that it can be superimposed on another person's image so seamlessly that it appears to be the original person.  The young man being interviewed was very excited about the potential uses for the technology, such as saving a businessman's time by allowing someone else to deliver his speech with the image of the businessman making it appear that he was speaking, or using the image of a dead actor to appear in a new film.  The newsman interviewing the technician allowed his own face to be mapped, and he was shocked to see himself delivering a message he had not delivered.  Think how 'handy' that would be for politicians too busy to deliver speeches themselves!  I understood the positive uses the young man being interviewed described, but I found the potential misuse of the technology terrifying!

Goblin State Park, Nature's Power

I also thought about the blog I had just posted.  It is hard enough to advise young people just entering college today about jobs that exist, but in our rapidly changing world how can advisors predict jobs that don't exist but probably will evolve even faster than we can imagine.  How quickly computers became essential, and smart phones have also changed our world.  Perhaps Covid hastened the acceptance of virtual communication once many of us were required to work at home.  I have given many in-person book talks since "Prairie Bachelor" was released, but I have also had my talks shared virtually, and many of my book talks can be watched on the internet.

Think about the advances in medicine allowing remote examinations and machines quickly integrated into common use.  Airlines are being challenged to find qualified plots, but perhaps business travel is becoming less necessary. Perhaps sooner than we can imagine, pilots may control planes from the ground, with on ground backup pilots to take over in an emergency.  Today people still prefer to play tennis on actual courts and golf on real, out-of-doors golf courses, but perhaps future generations will prefer to strap some kind of headset on and play tennis and golf virtually.  Maybe as the water rises in Venice, tourists will virtually sit in their living rooms to tour the canals, the experience custom designed for the stay-at-home tourist by a Virtual Reality Designer.

Ice storms, fires & floods--What is our future?

Only a few years ago, who would have predicted jobs for 3D-printing Technicians or Solar Energy and Wind Energy Technicians, yet those occupations are already here.  Will the time arrive when Genetic Engineering will allow us to custom-make our babies?  Will home schooling become more desirable with Personal Education Guides?

It is predicted that between 2020 and 2050 people living over the age of sixty will nearly double, and  the overall world's population of about 7.8 billion people in 2020 will increase to over 9.7 billion people by 2050.  This is the predicted world our current college freshmen are entering.  Good Luck to those High School Counselors and College Professors helping students choose careers for the future that awaits them.   

1 comment:

The Blog Fodder said...

Students who go to school to learn how to do something instead of why it is done or how something works instead of why it works that way are going to have difficulty with careers. Careers will change frequently, even service careers. Learning has always been a life long experience but it will be much more of a step learning curve. I am so far behind in my chosen field, I am glad I am retired