I went to your pretty average, midwestern high school where FFA, show choir and wrestling ruled the roost. Milton, Wisconsin is pretty small (population 5,000), but very proud. The teachers were amazing, the students were typical and there were few true cliques since we all went to school from elementary and on. The problem was not with the high school itself, but the structure of nearly every high school across America.
High School ruined my career by being too organized, structured and consistent. The first bell rings at 7:46am and you know you have to be in your first hour class where attendance is taken and studies begin. Each morning class always runs for the same amount of time and once the bell rings, you move to the next room. There is always lunch at the exact same time everyday. The same amount of people in each line, the same amount of time to eat your food and the same friends to share a giggle with. When the last bell rings it is always always at 2:46pm, not 2:45pm and not 2:47pm but always the same exact time.
There is no worry, no wonder, and no stress (except when it is test time). You know your exact expectations for each class, an outlined syllabus and precise due dates for projects. There might be the occasional pop quiz, but not that often really.
My problem is that there is almost no career that functions that way and especially not a veterinary technician career.
My normal day as a vet tech always started at a similar time, but once my foot stepped in that door, it was always go time. Appointments rarely started or ended on time. Surgeries could change at the blink of an eye (not to mention the bloats and blocked cats showing up 10 minutes before close).
Clients could show up content, angry, confused, or intoxicated. Each client was a like a pop quiz that you had to ace or the consequences could be more brutal than getting a C+ on your report card.
The idea of a lunch break was a joke. Since staff comes and goes like a revolving door you rarely shared it with the same people, let alone getting a chance to eat all.
I had to then quickly learn the technique of managing time and prioritizing my duties that often including doing so on an empty stomach and a full bladder with a beaming smile.
Now I am not saying that I have the magical solution for how to re-arrange high schools to match how the "real world" works, but high school did give me an unrealistic idea of how my future career would work. And maybe it is too much of a personal preference to be prepared, organized and consistent. That is probably why I work for a patient management system company.
How would you have changed your high school to fit more into the "real world?"