Ditch that leash on life and pursue a career that’s truly rewarding, advise Atlantic Canadians who changed jobs at an older age

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In substantial university, Robin Kent was not one of individuals people today who realized what vocation route she needed to pursue.

She inevitably qualified to be a certified simple nursing. Now, just after a extended time I that industry, she is switching professions.

“Some children are like ‘oh, I dream of remaining an astronaut,’ but I just genuinely didn’t have a desire profession pinpointed,” stated the 45-calendar year-outdated from Halifax, N.S. who has long gone back again to school to study acupuncture and Chinese drugs more than 20 years soon after getting an LPN and working as a continuing treatment assistant.

“I had a great plan for a wellness-treatment timetable, but it just acquired to a place exactly where, considering the fact that my husband is effective all the time and only has Sundays off, there would be a two-week extend where by I wouldn’t get to commit a total working day with my spouse or my family.

“I understood it was a transitional work in any case and I begun wondering about what it was that I truly wished to do.”

Kent experienced designed an appreciation for acupuncture immediately after suffering from great benefits from a friend of hers who went via the similar acupuncture system five decades prior to her.

“She is my major care practitioner,” defined Kent. “I would go to her right before I went to a Western medical professional, unless it was an acute crisis. I genuinely began to be passionate about Chinese medication and acupuncture, so then I decided to just go for it.”

Returning to college at 43 decades previous arrived with worries.

“I feel like it’s so substantially more challenging to focus now, I experienced to set a lot far more operate into studying,” she mentioned. “When I went to LPN college, I lived with my moms and dads and experienced no other responsibilities. I just went to college. It is been a challenge to balance faculty and family simply because I have three little ones, a husband and tons of pets.”

But she has no regrets and encourages other folks to choose the leap and transform careers if it feels right for them.

“Do some thing you are passionate about, but do not box by yourself in, experience like it has to be without end,” she recommended. “As a human currently being, you expand and alter. What satisfies you as a significant faculty (pupil) or higher education graduate in your 20s could not go well with you as you get older.”


Robin Kent is a 45-year-old acupuncturist student at the Canadian College of Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine in Bedford, N.S. She will be graduating this June. Contributed photo
Robin Kent is a 45-12 months-outdated acupuncturist student at the Canadian School of Acupuncture and Regular Chinese Drugs in Bedford, N.S. She will be graduating this June. Contributed image

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Change not always the initial preference

Shanna Slater’s diploma didn’t accommodate her immediately after graduation thanks to lack of employment.

The 49-year-previous from Charlottetown, P.E.I. got a bachelor of science in psychology and neurobiology straight out of large school, but then worked a pair of diverse work unrelated to her area.

“I did not like the hours, didn’t like the salary, was feeling unfulfilled and then ended up pursing economical solutions as a vocation,” she recounted. “I needed to be in a position to make a variation and assist individuals that were slipping through the cracks.”

She came on the plan soon after remaining a Entire world Monetary Group client. She was made available an possibility to generate her personal fiscal solutions organization affiliated with the firm.

“It was only since of that precise business that I ended up in economic companies and self-utilized,” she said. “The conventional side didn’t enchantment to me, to get the job done for a person else.”


Shanna Slater is a self-employed financial services professional in Charlottetown, P.E.I. who originally got a bachelor of science degree in psychology and neurobiology before changing career paths. Contributed photo
Shanna Slater is a self-employed financial services expert in Charlottetown, P.E.I. who at first received a bachelor of science diploma in psychology and neurobiology right before altering profession paths. Contributed picture

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She grew to become a certified money products and services qualified by means of Globe Economic Group, veering entirely absent from her authentic diploma.

“It was brilliant, it was fun and it was also terrifying mainly because you’re going into one thing you really don’t even know if you are going to like and creating a major transform,” she claimed. “But, from a own growth standpoint, it was the most effective issue ever. From a loved ones standpoint, it has designed far more chances for the reason that of the flexibility, availability and skill to be in manage of my time and agenda.”

Slater feels similarly to Kent in that a vocation should not be a box, but switching professions is not a selection to make lightly.

“If you can do it part-time, to start to determine out if you in fact like it, or get the education you want to do that, so you’re not putting yourself in a financial gap, that would be ideal,” she said. “Don’t be concerned to get that probability. Everyday living is shorter.”

A diploma is not a leash

Alex Handyside has taken that prospect several moments more than the earlier 40 many years. The 64-calendar year- outdated from Dartmouth, N.S. is a component-time commissioner and coach/bus driver, but has also flown helicopters with the British Royal Navy and Royal Canadian Air Power, worked for Metro food stuff financial institution and started off his have senior household care company.

To grow to be a helicopter navigator, the British Royal Navy demanded him possessing a university diploma.


Alex Handyside currently lives in Dartmouth, N.S. and has had several different career paths, ranging from helicopter navigator to part-time coach driver. Contributed photo
Alex Handyside at the moment life in Dartmouth, N.S. and has experienced numerous various job paths, ranging from helicopter navigator to element-time coach driver. Contributed picture

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“Spotty-confronted, 18-12 months-outdated me was thinking, ‘well, I’ll go absent and get a diploma and then I’ll attempt to join the Navy once again later,’” he recalled. “So, that is what I did, I studied a thing I was intrigued in, albeit not anything I was always likely to work in. I selected biochemistry.”

Degree in hand, Handyside did two years of schooling to come to be a helicopter navigator for the Navy, then transferred to the Royal Canadian Air Pressure just after he was despatched for a three-12 months trade.

Soon after 21 several years, Handyside remaining the military services. While operating for the RCAF, he did his learn of business administration, which kick-began his next career.

“Most of my courses were being geared toward the non-profit facet of matters,” he mentioned. “I understood that I would not be working for corporate Canada, I’d a great deal instead get the job done for a non-gain business.”

Handyside labored in the foods financial institution sector for three several years, ahead of leaving that and developing a household treatment agency, which he managed for 12 years.

“I’d normally planned on exiting the industry,” he said. “I realized it was time to wrap up, give it to someone else and I’ll shift on to a little something much a lot less tense.”

Handyside moved on to occasional do the job as a commissioner and coach driver, which he enjoys.

“They give me time to do what I want,” he stated. “It may not glimpse like a lot of pleasurable to most people, but these work are on my terms.”

He advises not to adhere all-around in a job that is no for a longer time pleasurable and that a diploma does not have to bind you to a job.

“I chose a degree, not because of what it was, but where it would guide me later on,” he claimed. “Don’t opt for a degree just to get a distinct career, select it in some thing you are interested in due to the fact a degree is just a demonstration of your capacity to master. It’s not a tether.

“Don’t be worried to improve, life’s much too limited to be sad at operate.”