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    Hi there

    I graduated from uni this summer and managed to get onto a great graduate scheme for a highly respected company with excellent pay, which I have been on since September. However, I have recently been offered a full-scholarship to go to the States for my sporting achievements... and I'm really uncertain about what to do.

    I know I would much prefer/enjoy going to America - I love studying and above all, I love sport. I dream of making it as a pro, and I haven't had enough time to put the hours in with my current job. I have definitely already felt quite trapped - I spend all my time making money, and having no time to go on holidays/spending it doing what I love - training! But then I feel as if I'm going to be a burden on my parents by moving in with them again and not being financially independent, and they were so proud of me for getting this job (and aren't interested in my sporting achievements). And I can always try to train as hard as possible alongside my job and so do both, as I initially planned?

    I'm going to have 40 years of my life to work anyway, right? Or am I just being naïve and throwing away a once in a lifetime career opportunity? Any opinions? I appreciate I'm in a fortunate position to be able to make this decision, but I just want to make the right one as it will probably determine the rest of my life!

    Thanks for your time!
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    (Original post by c4thy)
    Hi there

    I graduated from uni this summer and managed to get onto a great graduate scheme for a highly respected company with excellent pay, which I have been on since September. However, I have recently been offered a full-scholarship to go to the States for my sporting achievements... and I'm really uncertain about what to do.

    I know I would much prefer/enjoy going to America - I love studying and above all, I love sport. I dream of making it as a pro, and I haven't had enough time to put the hours in with my current job. I have definitely already felt quite trapped - I spend all my time making money, and having no time to go on holidays/spending it doing what I love - training! But then I feel as if I'm going to be a burden on my parents by moving in with them again and not being financially independent, and they were so proud of me for getting this job (and aren't interested in my sporting achievements). And I can always try to train as hard as possible alongside my job and so do both, as I initially planned?

    I'm going to have 40 years of my life to work anyway, right? Or am I just being naïve and throwing away a once in a lifetime career opportunity? Any opinions? I appreciate I'm in a fortunate position to be able to make this decision, but I just want to make the right one as it will probably determine the rest of my life!

    Thanks for your time!
    One thing I've learned by actively pursuing my passion (Writing) is that there is ALWAYS work to be found. Two years ago I had to make a very hard decision on whether or not to leave a job in order to move in pursuit of grad school. It's hard to leave the comfort and stability of something you may not love but are good at. It can also be difficult to do what your heart tells you when others don't understand it or have their own expectations of you. However, your life is meant to be lived in a manner that will make you happy and fulfill your purpose. They same way your parents have chosen to live their lives. I'm sure your parents would be proud of you succeeding in your chosen field.

    What you want is productive. Go for it! Too may people go through life with "should haves". Honestly , when was the last time you heard someone say, "You know, not pursuing my passion was the greatest thing I've ever done. My life has been so much better for it." Just something to think about.
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    (Original post by c4thy)
    Hi there

    I graduated from uni this summer and managed to get onto a great graduate scheme for a highly respected company with excellent pay, which I have been on since September. However, I have recently been offered a full-scholarship to go to the States for my sporting achievements... and I'm really uncertain about what to do.

    I know I would much prefer/enjoy going to America - I love studying and above all, I love sport. I dream of making it as a pro, and I haven't had enough time to put the hours in with my current job. I have definitely already felt quite trapped - I spend all my time making money, and having no time to go on holidays/spending it doing what I love - training! But then I feel as if I'm going to be a burden on my parents by moving in with them again and not being financially independent, and they were so proud of me for getting this job (and aren't interested in my sporting achievements). And I can always try to train as hard as possible alongside my job and so do both, as I initially planned?

    I'm going to have 40 years of my life to work anyway, right? Or am I just being naïve and throwing away a once in a lifetime career opportunity? Any opinions? I appreciate I'm in a fortunate position to be able to make this decision, but I just want to make the right one as it will probably determine the rest of my life!

    Thanks for your time!
    I would ask myself if I would regret not taking the scholarship; if I thought I would always wonder what if, then I'd take it over the job. But it felt it was something I could put to one side with no regrets, it might be different.

    You have obviously worked hard and have talent to get the sports scholarship. It strikes me that it is the type of opportunity that will not come around often; whereas there are (generally speaking) a lot of graduate schemes. If you were capable of getting one already, I can't see that, having the additional development of your current experience plus masters (with scholarship - impressive), you would be unlikely to get another if that was what you decided to pursue afterwards. Taking the scholarship won't close that door. Although subsequent grad schemes might initially question why you left, it sounds like a pretty amazing one-off opportunity.

    From what you've said about currently struggling to fit your sport in with work, I wonder whether your idea that you could turn down the scholarship and work and train is realistic. Also, sports generally aren't something you can do at the highest level throughout your life - there are peak years for your physical ability, especially if you're thinking about wanting to go pro. Whatever your grad scheme is in, I'm sure that the window of opportunity for that kind of career is bigger than sports would be.

    I suppose I would ask myself which is the more exciting opportunity to me - the move to us, train full time etc or stay as I am. For me, that current job would need to be pretty incredible to make it worthwhile.


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    (Original post by ShyBrown)
    One thing I've learned by actively pursuing my passion (Writing) is that there is ALWAYS work to be found. Two years ago I had to make a very hard decision on whether or not to leave a job in order to move in pursuit of grad school. It's hard to leave the comfort and stability of something you may not love but are good at. It can also be difficult to do what your heart tells you when others don't understand it or have their own expectations of you. However, your life is meant to be lived in a manner that will make you happy and fulfill your purpose. They same way your parents have chosen to live their lives. I'm sure your parents would be proud of you succeeding in your chosen field.

    What you want is productive. Go for it! Too may people go through life with "should haves". Honestly , when was the last time you heard someone say, "You know, not pursuing my passion was the greatest thing I've ever done. My life has been so much better for it." Just something to think about.
    Thank you so much for your response
    I guess in my heart I do agree you, I just need to develop the confidence and believe that I am making the right decision!
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    (Original post by arguendo)
    I would ask myself if I would regret not taking the scholarship; if I thought I would always wonder what if, then I'd take it over the job. But it felt it was something I could put to one side with no regrets, it might be different.

    You have obviously worked hard and have talent to get the sports scholarship. It strikes me that it is the type of opportunity that will not come around often; whereas there are (generally speaking) a lot of graduate schemes. If you were capable of getting one already, I can't see that, having the additional development of your current experience plus masters (with scholarship - impressive), you would be unlikely to get another if that was what you decided to pursue afterwards. Taking the scholarship won't close that door. Although subsequent grad schemes might initially question why you left, it sounds like a pretty amazing one-off opportunity.

    From what you've said about currently struggling to fit your sport in with work, I wonder whether your idea that you could turn down the scholarship and work and train is realistic. Also, sports generally aren't something you can do at the highest level throughout your life - there are peak years for your physical ability, especially if you're thinking about wanting to go pro. Whatever your grad scheme is in, I'm sure that the window of opportunity for that kind of career is bigger than sports would be.

    I suppose I would ask myself which is the more exciting opportunity to me - the move to us, train full time etc or stay as I am. For me, that current job would need to be pretty incredible to make it worthwhile.


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    Thank you so much! I agree, I think it's now or never with sport. I enjoy my career, but it's not a 'dream' for me - just something to keep me mentally stimulated. I know what is the more exciting opportunity !
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    (Original post by c4thy)
    I know I would much prefer/enjoy going to America - I love studying and above all, I love sport. I dream of making it as a pro, and I haven't had enough time to put the hours in with my current job.
    Seems as you already made your decision.

    I have definitely already felt quite trapped - I spend all my time making money, and having no time to go on holidays/spending it doing what I love - training!
    But you know, that except you will get involved in sports as a career, that will be allways the case. Thus maybe you will only postpone the problem for one or two years?
    And I can always try to train as hard as possible alongside my job and so do both, as I initially planned?
    I would try to talk to others on your level, what they do and how they can arrange it.

    Or am I just being naïve and throwing away a once in a lifetime career opportunity?
    Well, that depends on the graduate sheme you are, but the question is of course: How long will you be able to do sports? (You can allways get hurt!!!) And how long will you work?

    Any opinions?
    I would really look through the conditions and realities of your sport scholarship before making any decision. Is the degree worth it? Are you able to stay (finance!) in the program in case you get injured? Are training opportunities really that good over there? (e.g. meals, level of the others, etc.) Is the degree of a high enough level or is it just a goodie adding to you playing sports and in fact a degree, you will not feel fulfilling or useful? Have you actually talked with your current employer, if you can leave regularly for certain training/training camps?
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    (Original post by Nathanielle)
    Seems as you already made your decision.


    But you know, that except you will get involved in sports as a career, that will be allways the case. Thus maybe you will only postpone the problem for one or two years?

    I would try to talk to others on your level, what they do and how they can arrange it.


    Well, that depends on the graduate sheme you are, but the question is of course: How long will you be able to do sports? (You can allways get hurt!!!) And how long will you work?


    I would really look through the conditions and realities of your sport scholarship before making any decision. Is the degree worth it? Are you able to stay (finance!) in the program in case you get injured? Are training opportunities really that good over there? (e.g. meals, level of the others, etc.) Is the degree of a high enough level or is it just a goodie adding to you playing sports and in fact a degree, you will not feel fulfilling or useful? Have you actually talked with your current employer, if you can leave regularly for certain training/training camps?
    Thanks very much for your thoughts. I guess that I do want to go, but need the reassurance that I'm not making a huge mistake. You've definitely given me a lot to consider before making the decision. The move would be purely for the sport, not the degree! The opportunities are great out there, but I think I should definitely push and explore what is available to me in my current position, to balance the two here first. I would be very happy if I could fit good quality training in with my job... And injuries are a big factor with any sport - though often you just need a 'lucky' period of good health to 'make it'. Thanks again!
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    (Original post by c4thy)
    ...........
    If your grad job is with a really big company you should approach them and ask a few questions. If you have a chance of being a successful public sportsperson, would they want to retain an association with you? Would they hold a graduate role open for you if you returned in a few year's time?
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    The question for me would be: what are you likely to most regret not doing in 5/10/20 years? And the answer - for me - would be the thing that you didn't get a chance to do again. Go to a different country on a scholarship? Even without the added attraction of the sport you love, what an awesome opportunity, that so few people get. I'd take it without hesitating. (And I say this with the benefit of a good number of years' work )
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    Personally I would go for it, but realistically only you can decide whether you have a real shot at a sports career or are just putting off entering the 'real world'.

    A lot will also depend on your appetite for risk. Imagine these two extreme outcomes:-

    1. a comfortable corporate life, very busy but earning well, training when you can, doing your sport as a hobby or at club level - but always wondering what might have been

    2. working on the tills at your local supermarket, knowing that you gave it your best shot but it didn't work out - great memories but wishing you could afford to buy your own place and go on holiday

    the reality will almost certainly be somewhere in between - but unless you are very motivated by career/money and very risk averse why not take the opportunity and see where it leads you?
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    (Original post by Pariah)

    A lot will also depend on your appetite for risk. Imagine these two extreme outcomes:-

    1. a comfortable corporate life, very busy but earning well, training when you can, doing your sport as a hobby or at club level - but always wondering what might have been

    2. working on the tills at your local supermarket, knowing that you gave it your best shot but it didn't work out - great memories but wishing you could afford to buy your own place and go on holiday

    the reality will almost certainly be somewhere in between - but unless you are very motivated by career/money and very risk averse why not take the opportunity and see where it leads you?
    Why would the reality be somewhere inbetween? That makes it sound like a good graduate job is a once in a lifetime opportunity never to be repeated..which is nonsense.
    The scholarship on the other hand, probably is once in a lifetime. So OP, you get paid to get another degree, play your sport, and enhance your CV.

    There is absolutely no reason why the OP should not get as good or better than her present job afterwards. And btw, i have been on interview panels for people who have done similar things, or who have for example played professional sport for some years after finishing uni before looking for a corporate job. There is no looking down on people for this, rather, the impression is firstly of people grabbing opportunities and running with them (future managerial potential not just the play-it-safe lackey) and secondly, there are often interesting skills people who have done sport at this level can bring into a company, whether it's a team or individual sport.
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    (Original post by sj27)
    Why would the reality be somewhere inbetween? That makes it sound like a good graduate job is a once in a lifetime opportunity never to be repeated..which is nonsense.
    The scholarship on the other hand, probably is once in a lifetime. So OP, you get paid to get another degree, play your sport, and enhance your CV.

    There is absolutely no reason why the OP should not get as good or better than her present job afterwards. And btw, i have been on interview panels for people who have done similar things, or who have for example played professional sport for some years after finishing uni before looking for a corporate job. There is no looking down on people for this, rather, the impression is firstly of people grabbing opportunities and running with them (future managerial potential not just the play-it-safe lackey) and secondly, there are often interesting skills people who have done sport at this level can bring into a company, whether it's a team or individual sport.
    or the op might spend a few years chasing the dream, fail, be regarded as de-skilled compared to fresh young graduates, not easily tick the grad scheme application boxes and struggle to find anything as good as what she has now. as i said, it depends on her appetite for risk and willingness to back herself. i can't see that that's particularly controversial.
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    (Original post by Pariah)
    or the op might spend a few years chasing the dream, fail, be regarded as de-skilled compared to fresh young graduates, not easily tick the grad scheme application boxes and struggle to find anything as good as what she has now. as i said, it depends on her appetite for risk and willingness to back herself. i can't see that that's particularly controversial.
    I think you over-estimate the 'skill' a 'fresh young graduate' brings, but whatever.
 
 
 
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