As a fresh-out-of-college 22-year-old, most people will tell you the world is your shining oyster, filled with endless opportunities and promises to make even your wildest dreams come true. I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve heard the phrase anything is possible or Justin Bieber’s oh-so-popular never say never within the past half year. Your first real job, your first real apartment… supposedly your amazing new “adult” life begins at 22 (though I realize this isn’t the case for everyone).
…And while that sounds amazing, a whole different set of pressures arise from the “boundless potential” every college grad is assumed to possess. From here on out, every decision I make, every person I connect with, essentially everything I do can make or break my future.
SO NATURALLY, I decided to make a drastic decision and move to Japan, a foreign country, work for a foreign company, and leave the wonderful comforts of home behind. Now this wouldn’t be so much an issue if the company that hired me was used to handling foreign hires or perhaps if they had more English speakers available. The company I chose, however, while it is well known in Japan, is still essentially on the verge of breaking into the global market. Thus they are beginning to recruit foreign workers while not being really equipped to do so. Despite the numerous complications that already have and will probably continue to arise from this, the prospect of being apart of the globalization of this company was too opportune and exciting for me to pass up. Excuse the nerd in me, but I mean seriously?! It’s kind of a really cool and exciting job opportunity… And to be honest, I’m also just happy to be working in this economy (with a liberal arts degree to boot)!
Please don’t get me wrong though. I think getting a degree from a liberal arts school is incredibly impressive. It takes a real dedication to academic success and requires valuable critical thinking skills; however, most employers are essentially taking a risk in hiring us. We have all these wonderful skills and attributes that make for a successful employee; however, most of us will have not have accumulated any actual work experience/knowledge relating to the job we might be hired for (as opposed to other degrees such as accounting or computer science). Companies are strictly hiring us for our potential and because they believe we possess something special.
And so, in a little less than half a month, I will officially begin my 3-month training in Tokyo. I have no idea what to expect but I’m hoping to find a glimpse of that “something special” my company saw in me. I’m looking forward to setting out on this new chapter in my life and I’m a little terrified but hey, I’m only 22 and the world is my oyster!