When I was fourteen growing up on a council estate, attending a very second rate school, the only career opportunities I’d heard of were factory work, shop assistant or office (the highest possible goal being to marry the boss!) I felt inside there was more, much more to life. My father then loosing his job meant leaving school without even GCSE level qualifications. (Think without a High School diploma for US folks).
Yet I was later to not only gain a Fine Arts degree and study post grad, but I became a teacher, traveled the world and even helped found a school! I sometimes have to remind my kids (who tend to have upper middle class aspirations) that I was born poor hence my social viewpoint is very different.
None of the kids I grew up with ever reached higher than shop or office. Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I do wonder sometimes how much untapped potential there was wasted because some were way smarter than me.
What made the difference was vision. I dared to get a job in downtown London. I mixed with a different crowd and slowly became aware of my options.I owe so much to the many folks that helped me along the way, taught me how to tap resources and had faith in me.
Always shoot for the stars!