Love or Money?

Planning your education and career in uncertain times

Hi! I’m Laura. I have a PhD in Adult Education, and two kids in their 20s who like to remind me that I’ve been a university student or instructor for as long as they’ve been alive. I research how education affects your job prospects and life chances.

I’ve been obsessed with work and education for as long as I can remember. I told my Grade 7 homeroom teacher I thought it would be cool to grow up and study why schools are the way they are: “Do they have to look like prisons? Why do they have such small windows? Why is school boring? Why can’t we go on more field trips?”

My first fast food jobs as a young teen were immediate sources of indignation, from the uniforms to the arbitrary authority of supervisors to the threat of fewer hours and shitty shifts if you didn’t toe the line. I had a bad attitude. I got fired a lot. 

Now I have a PhD in Educational Policy Studies. I still have a bad attitude sometimes, and I still question the role of both education and work in social justice on a near daily basis, especially in that, as someone pushing 50 years old, I have never had a secure, “normal” job in my life.

The workforce is changing, and changing fast. University or college is a necessity but no guarantee of a “good” job. Getting a career path right is hard. You should learn more about these things. From me.

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