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My plan for the enxt few years....(advice needed)

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 
Well I'm off to college next year at SUNY Buffalo. SKiing won't eb the problem as they ahve a great ski club, but its what will happen after that I'm starting to think about. My dream is to move out west somewhere after i finishs up college and basiclaly try to make my life out there. Obviously skiing as much as possible is a big motive. So as my already accepted application sits there saying "undecided" for a major, I was wondering if anyone had any advice for what to study and try for out there. A line of work that would offer a good (i don't have to be rich by any means) salary and would obviously be located near some awesome skiing. I just thought of the idea like two days ago and ahve a few years to investigate it but any starting tips or ideas for what to major in order to land a decent job and start up a life out there would be?
P.S.-I'm also writing a scholarship application essay and my goals in life is the topic so this is a good source of ideas.
post #2 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Predator88
Well I'm off to college next year at SUNY Buffalo. SKiing won't eb the problem as they ahve a great ski club, but its what will happen after that I'm starting to think about. My dream is to move out west somewhere after i finishs up college and basiclaly try to make my life out there. Obviously skiing as much as possible is a big motive. So as my already accepted application sits there saying "undecided" for a major, I was wondering if anyone had any advice for what to study and try for out there. A line of work that would offer a good (i don't have to be rich by any means) salary and would obviously be located near some awesome skiing. I just thought of the idea like two days ago and ahve a few years to investigate it but any starting tips or ideas for what to major in order to land a decent job and start up a life out there would be?
P.S.-I'm also writing a scholarship application essay and my goals in life is the topic so this is a good source of ideas.
Restaurant and Hotel mgmt is good for any resort town. Real Estate is also a good vocation. I moved after college, 14 years ago, to a ski town, I have a degree in Advertising and now I sell food. good luck
post #3 of 28
Youre at the point where youre going to figure out a lot more "stuff" about the world and about yourself, as you leave home and head off to college. I was at the same point a few years ago and thinking about beyond college got me a little anxious. Think about what types of things you like to do- high level. Right now you cant get real deep into pursuing anything (in my opinion) as you havent been exposed to too much (thats what college is for, especially a state school like Buffalo where there is a ton to do and a ton to study). After a semester or year you will probably figure out a little more in regards to what really interests you. Dont sweat the undecided thing either- I know more people that changed majors, many of them to vastly different areas, than when they started. The cities out west all have the jobs that NYC, Boston, Philly do so dont worry too much about finding a job out there. Denver and SLC are right in the middle of ski country and you can get any job out there from a CEO to a dishwasher. Figure out first what youre interests are, then go from there. It doesnt happen overnight either- youve got years. And if youre anything like me, 4 years at college only adds to the questions and does not answer much (not to scare you).
As for your essay- write about what being happy and successful would mean to you both professionally and personally. Dont get into specifics (as you dont know what you want to do anyway) but talk about being respected, doing good work, or whatever. Those things are BS contests anyways. Good Luck
post #4 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Predator88
Well I'm off to college next year at SUNY Buffalo. SKiing won't eb the problem as they ahve a great ski club, but its what will happen after that I'm starting to think about. My dream is to move out west somewhere after i finishs up college and basiclaly try to make my life out there. Obviously skiing as much as possible is a big motive. So as my already accepted application sits there saying "undecided" for a major, I was wondering if anyone had any advice for what to study and try for out there. A line of work that would offer a good (i don't have to be rich by any means) salary and would obviously be located near some awesome skiing. I just thought of the idea like two days ago and ahve a few years to investigate it but any starting tips or ideas for what to major in order to land a decent job and start up a life out there would be?
P.S.-I'm also writing a scholarship application essay and my goals in life is the topic so this is a good source of ideas.
here're two thoughts- i attended a fine university in vt. which had no sports of any kind, i found myself skiing so much i dropped out in about a month.
then, i attended a really nice school out in the hamptons, with gorgeous, glossy atlantic winter-surf, and i dropped out after about a calender year of spending my time surfing or taking the lirr into manhattan, to the transfer to newark airport, to the $19.99 people express flight to burlington, VT., where i kept my skis at my girlfriend's dorm.
upon dropping out, i immediately loaded up my car with everything that i couldn't pawn and drove to dillon, co. with my DH boards

you want my advice? school and skiing don't mix.
try to take a season or two off to pursue yer studies, or be a man and admit you're a skier, not a student.
any imbecile can get their ba/bs, etc., precious few of us can get over 100 days a season in at a great resort.

there is a third, and far cooler option, however.
contact the american college of switzerland, in lausanne, and apply for a ski resorts mgt. program. awesome skiiing nearby, you'll get creds while skiing, and you'll ski far finer terrain than anything you'll ever find in north america.
go east, young man.
post #5 of 28
I'm skiing this season with a kid at the end of a bachelor's degree in recreation management or something like that. He's working in our ski school (after paying the college a fee), getting a wage and earning the last credits he needs to graduate.

In Michigan's UP, there's a college that teaches snow farming. Really, it's course teaches how to make snow and how to groom it, along with a bunch of other stuff about repairing lifts and managing employes. Its graduates end up getting jobs that start out as groomer operators and end up being outdoor operations managers for ski resorts.

As others have noted, it's possible to get all sorts of jobs near ski areas. When I was 30, I quit my degree-focused career and got a night job at a state hospital so I could ski days. I've averaged about 100 days a season for the last 35 years.
post #6 of 28
Thread Starter 
good thoughts guys, thanks. As for skiing and school, i'm not too worried as the UB ski club goes every day (some nights with busses) to the local hills. Then they go on a couple of trips a year so I'll get enough good runs in and balance my school work.
post #7 of 28
I've always thought that a medical profession would be good for a skier- every ski town has a hospital.
post #8 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Predator88
Well I'm off to college next year at SUNY Buffalo. SKiing won't eb the problem as they ahve a great ski club, but its what will happen after that I'm starting to think about. My dream is to move out west somewhere after i finishs up college and basiclaly try to make my life out there. Obviously skiing as much as possible is a big motive. So as my already accepted application sits there saying "undecided" for a major, I was wondering if anyone had any advice for what to study and try for out there. A line of work that would offer a good (i don't have to be rich by any means) salary and would obviously be located near some awesome skiing. I just thought of the idea like two days ago and ahve a few years to investigate it but any starting tips or ideas for what to major in order to land a decent job and start up a life out there would be?
P.S.-I'm also writing a scholarship application essay and my goals in life is the topic so this is a good source of ideas.
Send a PM to Heluvaskier. He goes to SUNY Buffalo.
post #9 of 28
Learn another language, and I don't mean a programming language. Spend at least a semester (preferebly a year) in a country that speaks said language. Do this no matter what you major in, be it technical or liberal art. Having another language on your resume is your ticket to higher pay, regardless of the field.

That is my one and only regret of college - I didn't do it.

As to what to study, if you're not one for the technical degrees, any major in a liberal arts degree is interchangeable with any other major in the job market. Technical degrees are a bit different, then it does make a difference. Irregardless of which way you go, study something you love.

Don't be afraid of the undeclared status, I changed majors in my junior year. My suggestion though is to not judge a course of study by the introductory classes. It wasn't till I got to the upper level classes that I learned I hated my initial major. My solution then was to take an upper level class in every major I thought would interest me - it worked well, I ended up studying in a field that I absolutely loved, and I would have passed it by if I had judged the field simply by the introductory class.

J
post #10 of 28

Me too!!

It is cool to know that I am not the only one in the world that is in the situation you are. I feel for you man. I am a soph. right now in college and I am still pretty much undecided on what I want to get a degree in. I just want something that is going to allow me to move out west, pay the bills, and ski AS MUCH as possible. I am getting ready to start some instructor training because I think it will be cool and it will make me more marketable when I get out there.
post #11 of 28
Major in Engineering and move to northern Utah. Areospace @ ATK Thiokol or Parker Hannifin, Automotive Safety @Autoliv. Also Hill AFB. Great skiing at some of the best places on earth. Cost of living is good and the population has not boomed yet.
post #12 of 28
Neuroscience. :P

With best wishes,
Chris
post #13 of 28
I agree with Steelman about Northern Utah. Lots of Jobs in the engineering field, and possibly some of the best sking in the country.
I am a doctoral student (audiology) at Utah State University. I ski primarily at a small family owned resort called Beaver Mountain http://www.skithebeav.com. Its small with only 4 lifts but has excellent powder stashes that can be found long after a storm. USU is at the mouth of the canyon. I can leave class and be on the lift in 30 minutes. Beaver also has $220 season passes. On weekends its about 2 hours to any of the Salt Lake resorts and less to Snow Basin and Powder Mountain. I work full time, go to school (yes and get good grades) and still manage to ski 50+ days/year. I will admit that I don't do much besides study, work and SKI!!!!!
post #14 of 28

relax!

totally got to hand it to anyone planning that far ahead at your age. At that point in my life my idea of long range planning was to figure out which bar was a) closest and b)had the best happy hour. But I'd say, go with what you love and the life style will follow. Show up for anything at all that interests you - in my undergrad days I took french lit and wildlife management and economics and political theory - all great. learning another language or two is great if that's your thing, living in another country (particuarly one where you are a minority) is also a good thing, but really, I have found that those people (including me!) who are pretty happy have found something(s) they really love and have not let themselves be dissuaded into doing something they "should" be doing.

I'm biased; I do think a degree will help you but geez, you can do anything you can think of with it. My undergrad degree is in philosophy and that is certainly NOT my area (at least not directly) of work currently (and I've worked on a cattle ranch, in radio, on capital hill in dc, ran programs for a Y, lived in Kenya...). No matter how much planning you do for a ski career you just do'n't know if you will meet and fall in love with a gorgeous girl from brazil and will wind up designing tank tops for fashion models I say be open to adventure!!
post #15 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by montana mags
No matter how much planning you do for a ski career you just do'n't know if you will meet and fall in love with a gorgeous girl from brazil and will wind up designing tank tops for fashion models I say be open to adventure!!
In any university you're going to meet more of the same- university types.
After I'd dropped out for a second time and decided to devote my colder months to racing and teaching, I met, in europe, a wonderful czech ski instructor/sports model, whom I married.
Woulda never happened were i in a lecture hall, under the flickering buzz of floursecent lights.....
be a man, run, do not walk, away from higher ed. while you're still young, and hop a flight to zurich and get ajob at a big euro resort.
during this month and next, there are many schools who hire like crazy for the LONG winter holidays enjoyed by europeans- kaprun, austria is a great, easy-to-get-a-good-job-at start.
post #16 of 28
Start school in NY and get all of your basics out of the way. Many of those basic courses will transfer. Once you decide what you want to major in, move to Colorado and establish residency by working without going to school. Colorado law makes it difficult to establish residency until you're 21. Once you do that, in-state tuition is not bad and you can go to CU-Boulder or Colorado State in Ft. Collins. Other options are the Colorado School of Mines, if you're interested in engineering, or the University of Denver (private). Western State is in Gunnison, which is close to Crested Butte. Go there if you only want to ski and are not interested in the value of the degree you want to get, probably not a completely fair assessment but there are much better schools in Colorado.

I have recently looked into this because my son is a senior in HS and has been admitted to the College of Engineering at CU-Boulder. I doubt that he will choose it but he has the option.

Good luck.
post #17 of 28
The only thing I would do is RUN from Vlad's advice. He drops out of college twice and he's telling you to 'be a man' and not go to school?!? Sounds like crappy advice to me. Reading his posts just makes me cringe. Look at what you leave on the table if you don't get a college degree:

- Salary of a college grad, starting at 35K, compounded at 3% for 40 years: 114K.

- Salary of someone with a GED, starting at 20K, compounded at 3%: 65K.

These are conservative estimates of future earned income. Reality shows an even wider disparity.

Now here's where the real fun begins. Take the difference for just the last 10 years of your career and you get almost half a million dollars. And that's not assuming you invest that money. It's the tail end of your career that will make the HUGE difference in your lifestyle.

DO NOT take his advice. There are plenty of careers out there that have a fine balance of work/life. Take mine. I am an executive at a Biopharma company in Salt Lake, AND ski more than 80 days a year in the Wasatch.

Powdr
post #18 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Powdr
The only thing I would do is RUN from Vlad's advice. He drops out of college twice and he's telling you to 'be a man' and not go to school?!? Sounds like crappy advice to me. Reading his posts just makes me cringe. Look at what you leave on the table if you don't get a college degree:

- Salary of a college grad, starting at 35K, compounded at 3% for 40 years: 114K.

- Salary of someone with a GED, starting at 20K, compounded at 3%: 65K.

These are conservative estimates of future earned income. Reality shows an even wider disparity.

Now here's where the real fun begins. Take the difference for just the last 10 years of your career and you get almost half a million dollars. And that's not assuming you invest that money. It's the tail end of your career that will make the HUGE difference in your lifestyle.

DO NOT take his advice. There are plenty of careers out there that have a fine balance of work/life. Take mine. I am an executive at a Biopharma company in Salt Lake, AND ski more than 80 days a year in the Wasatch.

Powdr
and we're all very impressed
:
post #19 of 28
I would second powdr's advice, and DEFINITLY go to school.

I grew up in Colorado, and spent the first 18 years of my life skiing rabidly. I ended up doing my undergrad in texas (yea yea, very long story) and only bagged probably 60 days over my four years as an undergrad. After graduating I moved back to CO and now live in Breckenridge, work as an equipment engineer in nearby Colo. Spgs. (ok so 2 hours is'nt exactly nearby, but when you only work 10 days a month, it'll do)

Next fall i'm going back to medical school, (as someone else pointed out in this thread EVERY ski town has medical facilites) but in the mean time i've bagged a ton of days on a bunch of awesome mountians.

Also as powdr pointed out, there are tons of places you can pursue any career you want while also skiing avidly. My current career has nothing to do with skiing, but i'm above 50 days already this season. especially in places like SLC, you can ski a ton and also pursue an independant career. Having said that, part of me choosing medical school relates to the fact that M.D.'s can find work anywhere, and I promise you that in 10 years i'll back in the mountains full time. But there are alot of schools with good recreation/hotel management programs as well, and I think those jobs would be a blast in ski towns. My roommate is a manager at a hotel in Breck and works 3-11 PM 5 days a week. With full time pay, that can be a hard skiing schedule to beat (doesnt hurt that the hotel is at one of the base areas either.)

Regardless your decision, best of luck. I hope you find a happy medium between skiing and work.
post #20 of 28
Make sure that you think long term. I did a lot of schooling- 4 years of college, 4 years of med school, and 7 years of training. Did I ski alot during that time- NO. Theres not much time to ski when you are working 100 +hrs/week! The basics of life, like sleeping, take precedence.

However, now I have a job I love, I have a good salary, and I am my own boss. Putting the time in early in life allowed me to have much greater freedom (financially and time wise) now.

When you are your age, forty seems old and a long time away, but it will come quicker than you think. Make sure you do something in life that will make you smile 4 out of 7 days.
post #21 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by vlad
and we're all very impressed
:
The 80 days impresses the heck out of me!
post #22 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by seattle_sun
Make sure that you think long term.
Make sure you do something in life that will make you smile 4 out of 7 days.
Great advice (Dr.) seattle_sun.
All of you youngsters..listen up.
post #23 of 28
Life is what happens while you're busy making plans for the future. maybe - and especially at a young age - you can put aside the analytical side of your personality, the side that is trying to keep the upper hand, and let things happen the way they are supposed to happen. Sometimes attempting to maintain control over situations that have no predetermined outcome can feel like you're fighting against life itself. And if you don't enbrace the living part, then what's the point?
post #24 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by vlad
and we're all very impressed
:
I learned long ago (perhaps you missed that in college ) that impressing people isn't what life is all about.
post #25 of 28
Either skip the college or get a Business/Finance degree and a real estate license in CO and be a real estate agent. With the prices places are going for and the turn over, and the fact that you can live anywhere, make a fortune when it's going through it's boom period, then bug out to the next big place to be, that's the ticket!

Okay, so I'm partially kidding, but only partially. Around here where the average home price is about $1M, the real estate agents are the ones raking it all in. Sell one $500k property per month, at your 1.5% take, and you're bringing in $90k/yr. Sell two a month and : .
post #26 of 28
Go to school and plan on getting a degree for the 'real world'. If you're forced to move to a big city and get a job, make sure it's something you'll enjoy. Ski areas and resorts will hire anyone with any degree. They generally care less about your degree and more about your personality.

One that stands out to me as a smart career is pharmarcy. You can go anywhere and you can also get jobs as a traveling pharmacist who fills in as part of a contract service.

Don't put much effort into planning this. Study something you could do as a career. Then move to a ski town and get a job. Once you've met people doors will open. In the smaller ski towns you'll go further by who you know, not what you know.

As far as things to study, you'll figure it out. You probably already have an idea. If you like math, then maybe engineering is for you. If you like puzzles, then maybe computer science. If you like writing, maybe journalism. Like jake said: take a lot of classes and try new things. The corporate world simply likes degrees because it shows you know how to learn. They don't actually expect you to know what you're doing when they hire you.
post #27 of 28
Quote:
Either skip the college or get a Business/Finance degree and a real estate license in CO and be a real estate agent. With the prices places are going for and the turn over, and the fact that you can live anywhere, make a fortune when it's going through it's boom period, then bug out to the next big place to be, that's the ticket!
Ummmm . . . I don't know if you've heard of this thing called the "housing bubble", but that sound you hear is all the air coming out and all the current real estate agents shouting for a job.

Better off majoring in something that interests you (and can land you a job). I majored in Geology and Biology because those were the majors with the most field trips. Turns out I ended up liking the subject matter, and I just landed a cushy job with New York State.

Also, whatever you do, don't major in philosphy, english, art history, or sociology. Major in something that actually has a job associated with it. There aren't many philosophy factories out west.
post #28 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by trouble
Life is what happens while you're busy making plans for the future. maybe - and especially at a young age - you can put aside the analytical side of your personality, the side that is trying to keep the upper hand, and let things happen the way they are supposed to happen. Sometimes attempting to maintain control over situations that have no predetermined outcome can feel like you're fighting against life itself. And if you don't enbrace the living part, then what's the point?

Pure genious. I think we can all relate to this.
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