What do you want to be when you grow up? What is your dream? What course are you going to take up in college? These are questions every student starts to hear more often as they enter high school. However, as simple as they sound, it is not that easy to give a proper answer to these questions.
A few weeks ago, we had the privilege of interviewing Axel Imutan (Grade 8), Jana Pelea (Grade 9), Yianni Evangelista (Grade 11), and Jef Fernandez (Grade 12) in order to hear their perspectives and insights on their own personal dreams and goals. We made sure to make the questions general so the interviewees can freely talk about their aspirations. Moreover, the students were interviewed separately, so their answers will not be influenced by their peers. Our goal was to see what people think of when they hear the word “dream” and if the answers of Junior high and Senior high students vary.
What is your dream and why?
According to the Merriam Webster Dictionary, a dream is “something that you have wanted very much to do, be, or have for a long time.” We wanted to hear what that was for these students and why they want that for themselves.
Axel: ”My dream is to have a job wherein I can make stories for everyone. I have a lot of stories in my head right now, and I want to tell it through any possible medium.”
Jana: “In terms of job, I want to be able to get into marketing and business. I want something that will allow me to travel a lot, so I don’t have to stay in one area all the time. I feel like I sometimes feel restless if I stay in one place or do the same thing for too long, so it would be nice if I were, somehow, forced to travel.”
Yianni: “My dream is to be a physician because helping people is something I enjoy doing. The science aspect of it is interesting, especially how the human body works.”
Jef: “It is my dream to serve people through managing a business. I believe that if you have the money, you are able to do more things because with money, there are privileges that you are able to attain. It is my goal to have a successful business that will make an impact on the lives of many.”
Did anyone influence you to dream this?
We are constantly influenced by people from our family, friends, celebrities, and perhaps even our crush (wink). Because of this, we were interested in knowing how others have inspired their aspirations as well.
Axel: “Not really.”
Jana: “Not really. It was just something that I thought of.”
Yianni: “I don’t think there was much of an influence on me. I just found [being a physician] interesting. But, television shows and K-dramas [sparked that interest] and made me research about it.”
Jef: “Yung may pinakamalaking influence to me is probably my parents. This is my dream for myself since I saw the benefits [that having a business] can give me and the joy of serving others. It’s not just my parents but also myself that encouraged and influenced this goal of mine. At the same time, one more factor would be the people I helped because seeing them happy and satisfied gives me a sense of fulfillment. I realized that helping others is important because you get to uplift others from the bad things they’re experiencing.”
Has the pandemic affected the future you envision for yourself? If so, how?
The pandemic changed how the world works and impacted the lifestyles of every person on this planet. Many felt hopeless due to the uncertainty, so we were curious to know how it has affected the future that people envision for themselves.
Axel: “Not really. It just gave me time to think of more ideas because when you stare at the ceiling for about twelve hours every day, you’re going to have a lot of thoughts going through your head.”
Jana: “It has affected it because I don’t want to stay put now that I know how it feels to always be staying in one area. It’s kind of tiring and frustrating, so I’d rather move around as much as possible.”
Yianni: “I think there’s an obvious relation between my dream to become a physician and the pandemic. It influenced me because I got interested in what doctors do which made me want to dream big to become like them.”
Jef: “I supposed the pandemic affected it. This is really just a newfound passion I discovered last year. There is an urgency when you’re in the medical field, especially when there’s a pandemic. Because of that, parang na-discourage ako because it seems like I won’t have the freedom of time and flexibility if I’m called to serve in that way. Of course, service is not limited to that. You can also serve people through having a business for example. In a way, it changed the way I want to serve people.”
Do you think it’s important to dream? If yes, why?
Some people find peace in having a structured and fully-planned out future while others believe that it is best to just enjoy what’s right in front of them. We asked this final question to know what these students thought, depending on their own definitions of “dreams” in life.
Axel: “Oh yeah. It’s important to have something that you want to achieve, so you have a goal. When you have a goal, you can work towards it, and you know how to work towards it in order to achieve it.”
Jana: “Yeah, I guess it’s good to dream of something or have a goal in life, so you at least know what to do or what to expect of yourself in the future.”
Yianni: “I think it’s important because you set goals for yourself when you dream. This will give you motivation to continue on when you feel like giving up and to give your best in all the things you do. At the same time, finding a dream right now is not that important because some people take time to find theirs. It’s alright to take as much time as you need to figure out what you want to be.”
Jef: “This reminded me of the Nescafé commercial and their tagline at the end, “Para kanino ka bumabangon?” A goal is something you look forward to accomplish. It’s what gives you the power to keep moving forward even if times are difficult. But, don’t feel bad if you’re not able to fulfill them because there are different timings for people. Maybe it’s not the season for that yet or there’s a certain level of maturity you have to reach before you can accomplish that certain thing.”
It can be much harder to think of a dream to follow as you get older because of the harsh reality that you finally face. You suddenly have to consider many aspects and details that you have never even thought of before like whether you will still be interested in your course while you are taking it, if you will find your career fulfilling in ten years, and if your passion will be able to provide for yourself and your future family.
Based on these answers, we observed that as the students in the higher grade levels shared deeper insights and more concrete reasons and goals. This is most probably due to the fact that they are closer to entering a new chapter in college; therefore, they need more certain goals as they choose their college and course. From these responses, we definitely saw that the older students considered and reflected on more factors such as their family, interests, and how they want to contribute to society.
Hey, you (wink). We’re all still growing. Everyone progresses at a different pace and follows a unique path. Don’t worry if you don’t have the answers to these questions, if you aren’t quite sure yet, or if your dreams keep changing. You still have time to step out of your comfort zone, to discover what you are truly passionate about, and to grow as an individual.
Popcorn is cooked in the same pot, but the kernels don’t pop at the same time. You shouldn’t worry if you’re confused while everyone around you has it all figured out because your time to pop and to find out what your dream truly is will come. Keep going and dream big!
your favorite seniors :)