I’ve started considering myself not a youngster anymore but a young-at-heart mature adult. Nonetheless, starting my adulthood, I’ve realized there are so many youngsters who keep wondering that they don’t really know what they want to do with their life. So many questions like: What major should I study in college? What kind of career I should follow in the future? What skills I need to equip myself with in order to survive in this crazy world?…
Many youngsters and students have shared with me that such unanswered questions even make them anxious, stressed, and so worried about their future.
Folks, you’re not alone.
I received those questions again from the sophomores at Fulbright University Vietnam (FUV). I was not surprised by the questions themselves but rather impressed by the confidence, thoughtfulness and openness of, I called, the Fulbrighters. I had a unique chance to interact with FUV students in one of the most, if not the most, special interviews for a Faculty position, in which the sophomores were my interviewers. (Could you tell me any similar interview when the students interview their own future instructors and professors?)
Mind you. I applied for a job, and the students were among the interviewers who interviewed me to make the collective decision if I should be given the job. Isn’t that fascinating! So, the questions were serious and demanded a serious response.
I want to share with you what I have shared with the Fulbright students and, time and time again, with many other youngsters. The answers for those quests are much simpler than you think.
Asking what you are in whatever you do is more important than asking what kind of work you are going to do in the future. The focus has to be on yourself, not on the external works. If you can answer what you are, then what-to-do is just a piece of cake.
Do you want to have many degrees or Do you need to be knowledgeable to be useful for your society?
Do you want to be rich or Do you need to be an ethical businessperson with excellent business skills to create jobs for people, to lift your country out of poverty?
Do you want to fight to stop a war or Do you need to be at peace first in your heart?
Do you want to fight corruption or Do you need to be yourself clean first?
Do you want much power or Do you need to be a great leader with a kind heart and a beautiful mind to serve your community?
In that interview session, I had many other questions. One of those is this “What will you bring to FUV to help the development of FUV students.”
I said, I want to help you folks to become leaders – the servant leaders.
Just when I finished my answer for that question, a time keeper kindly rescued me from this very deep grill for the reason that we ran out of time for the interview session. Saved by the bell!
I then wrote “servant leadership” on the board and closed the session by telling the FUV folks “I’d love to see you folks get curious and find out what servant leadership means?”
So, what are you, folks?
Đào Thu Hằng
A job applicant