All decked-up in suits sitting at a conference hall enthusiastically waiting for the session to begin. Today, a few might decide on what their future holds for them as the session is on ‘Alternative and emerging career opportunities.’ After contemplating a lot on my career path, I also decided to attend the session to be delivered by Mr. Bhupinder Suri of Coca-Cola India at the Youth Speak Forum organised by AIESEC Nagpur. Technology is a window to new age work opportunities in today’s world- a realisation that dawned upon a lot of us while attending a knowledgeable session by Mr. Suri. 

Today’s rapid evolution of the digital ecosystem is serving several alternate career opportunities for the new generation, forcing them to choose how they want to exist in the future. Individuals today have much more flexibility and many more options to choose from. There are several aspiring examples of students opting for alternative career options in the FMCG space and becoming climatologists and ice-cream tasters; and not just choosing a career from a handful of well-known professions such as doctor, lawyer and engineer. 

Thinking out-of-the-box, innovation, self-identification of skills, dreaming big and aspiring for more were some of the key traits discussed during the session for interesting and challenging alternative career options. The interpretation of technology across different age groups can be broadly classified as a source of information, a medium to express your thoughts, a network connector, a storage source and an engagement platform. This evolution has also added to multiple career opportunities unlike the pre-decided notions in our prior generations’ of lawyer, doctor and engineers. We have the opportunity to interact across boundaries through such student bodies to exchange ideas and best practices across fields. 

Over the last few years even our Indian education system has witnessed a shift towards balancing education and extra-curricular activities, along with arts, commerce and science becoming a stepping stone to the world. This session is a reminder of the opportunities available with a blanket base of developing leadership qualities and out-of-the-box thinking within oneself. Having ones basics in place, adaption or experimentation is an option to choose from. 

To quote a few examples globally, we have Coca-Cola’s founder, John Pemberton, who was a medical student and a pharmacist, and Steve Jobs, a college dropout, who went on built an iconic brand- Apple. Careers today are more skill oriented and open to different backgrounds. It reminded me of a quote I read somewhere – If you do what you love, you'll never work a day in your life. It is fascinating to learn careers being made for ice-cream tasters, like in Dreyer's, to taste 60 flavors in a day! 

Traditional setups of MNCs are equally welcoming of some interesting careers. The lessons I learnt today were to never set boundaries and be afraid of taking risks in life, to experiment, learn and unlearn, to try till I succeed and above all be proud of my failures because as Steve Jobs rightly said, “Someday we all will connects the dots.” 

Subhag Dolke is the Vice-President Global Citizen-Students, AIESEC in Nagpur.