The son of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge is already being heralded by many as the future King of Australia. Now I’ll admit that the royal family has softened on its formal duties in recent years, but the new prince will still be met with the responsibilities of royalty.
It begs the question, how much influence do parents really have on their children’s career paths? If you’re in the royal family, then it’s pretty much a done deal, but how about the rest of us? Family, specifically parents, are placed high on the list of social influences when it comes to choosing a university.
Sometimes the influence is subtle but other times it can be screamingly obvious. I’ve heard stories about students who have logged on to the UAC website to check their preferences, only to find the list completely different. Turns out their parents had decided that a career in law would be more fruitful than the arts degree they had favoured.
I have also seen this firsthand at countless careers expos where parents have taken prospective guides for seemingly lesser degrees out of their child’s hands, only to replace it with guides to what they considered to be more ‘prestigious’ degrees.
At the end of the day, the choice of career path should be left to the person who has to walk it. Sure, certain degrees are considered by some to look better on paper, but the only paper you should be concerned with is your transcript. If you choose something you are truly passionate about, it will reflect in your marks.
So regardless of whether law is your love, teaching is your trade or design is your destiny, decide on a course that’s right for you.
For as William Ernest Henley famously wrote, ‘I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul’.