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Career Choice Pressures - a short story by A.B.King

   Once upon a time in the country of Nigeria there lived a young Christian boy named Philip. He was in High School and the time had come based on the Nigerian school system for him and his classmates to pick a profession so that they could now begin to be taught to specialize in that profession.   Philip was in a bit of a dilemma. He loved the business world and did really well in Economics and Commerce. On the other hand he loved drawing and he did really well in Fine Art. He was the best in the school in that subject.   Philip asks his parents for help. They say he can choose anything he wanted but they would prefer if he choose to become a doctor but it’s his life – his destiny; so he should choose whatever he wants to choose.   Philip goes to school the next day and when it’s time to choose he notices that another boy who went before him who chooses being an artist gets laughed at by the other students. Ok! that settles it then, he would choose Business Administration but interestingly somebody else who choose Business Administration gets laughed at by some of the students; they say he is choosing an easy course.   Philip noticed that the key people who weren’t laughed at but were actually respected where those who choose to become brain surgeons. They were respected by the other students because it made them look super smart for choosing a course that they classified as hard.So, when it was Philip’s turn to be asked what he wanted to be when he grows up so it would be recorded in the principal’s file, he said he wanted to be a Brain Surgeon.   His classmates cheered him.   When Philip gets home and tells his parents what he choose they ask why he changed his mind and choose something that he wasn’t even considering before, he says that he just realized that it’s what he really wants to do.   Many years later, Philip meets an old classmate who had graduated and was now a successful member of the working class, while Philip is still in the University because he had been failing his classes every year because of how hard his course was to him. He just wasn’t cut out to become a Brain Surgeon.   The old classmate asks Philip what he is doing now, thinking that Philip too had graduated and had finished with his schooling a long time ago.   Out of shame, Philip lies and says he is a brain surgeon in America and than he is just on a visit home and he would soon be going back.   The old classmate cheers.   After they went their different ways, Philip goes back to his parent’s house and cries. Kneeling down he asked God what should he do. God says, “Go back to high school and choose the right course this time.”
The End.

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