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I have always envied those amongst my peers who have figured out what they want to do with their lives, down to the exact job description. That highly pinpointed sense of direction and purposefulness in regards to my future is what I have always lacked, and consequently, always craved. Not until recently did the scattered pieces of my mental landscape begin forming themselves into a more cohesive map, with an “X” marking the spot of a career involving foreign affairs.
In the jumble of classes at school, no subject has ever quite piqued my interest like Spanish has. One of my earliest childhood memories is of my kindergarten self, perched on a stool in a corner of my elementary school library, learning the letters of the Spanish alphabet. Whether it was because of my early introduction to foreign languages or not, my love for languages continues to be one of my greatest passions. Nevertheless, as I looked towards the future, I was faced with the troubling and also incorrect notion that a career involving foreign languages would have to be something along the narrow lines of linguist or translator, neither of which particularly interested me. With mounting pressure from my peers and society to decide on a life path, I was once again at a loss.
However, during my second college visit to Yale, I met Caroline, a girl with similar passions to me whose major sounded too good to be true. She explained how she was majoring in Global Affairs, with a focus on international security. The little girl in me remembered watching in awe as Kim Possible the teenage spy upheld justice and defeated the baddies on TV, and it excited me that this was something I could perhaps even slightly emulate in my future career.
This revelation coincided with the beginning of International Affairs, a class that I enrolled in because I thought it might come in handy one day. Little did I know that this simple choice would help me tremendously in orienting my life. Like many of my peers, my previous limited knowledge of global issues made me a casual bystander in my society rather than an active participant. However, after participating in simulations on, for example, the necessity of the United Nations or the United States’ role in a changing world, I realized that the act of formulating and defending my opinions on these international issues, something that I had rarely done in the past, was something I greatly enjoyed. The class was the final push that I needed to continue the path that Caroline had inadvertently directed me towards. This new sense of direction, although by no means perfect, will at the least guide me in the coming years as I approach my life-changing college experience. Although I know that my chances of becoming an international CIA superspy are rather unlikely, the simple pleasure of having a general idea of what I want to pursue is enough for me.
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