We Are America

Voices of the Nation's Future

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Photo ofAleyna House
Growing up, adults were always pushing us to be looking towards the future, from encouraging us to get good grades for college or choosing a career path. Whether we were making plans to visit various colleges or looking at booths on career day, there were times where it felt very overwhelming (and sometimes confusing) as a child because I really didn’t know exactly what I wanted to do after graduating from high school. Sometimes, I didn’t know what my plans were for the summer or even what classes I wanted to take next year. So, thinking long term about what college I wanted to attend or what profession I would choose seemed like a decision I wasn’t quite ready to make. One of the things that I have considered was becoming a teacher of some sort. 
Being a teacher was always one of the main careers that people would tell us about in school, but I wasn’t really interested until my freshman year of high school. I knew that teaching may be something that would fit my personality, but I wasn’t sure what subject I would teach. I also thought about nursing for a short period of time and even did an internship at the local hospital to see if I was interested in some type of medical career. After the internship was over, I realized that it wasn’t what I wanted to do but was grateful for the opportunity. I learned a lot and met some new friends, but it wasn’t what my heart was set on. I had plenty of lavish ideas of perfect jobs, but I knew deep down that they wouldn’t be jobs that would suit my creative needs. 
Being raised in a musical family, I started taking piano lessons at an early age and have continued both piano and vocal lessons for several years. Through that, I have had my fair share of embarrassing performances - whether it be a piano recital, a Christmas show or even performances for my school’s annual show. When seventh grade came around, I knew that I needed to sign up for choir because of the passion I had for music. This was when everything took a turn in my life. Being able to take choir changed my life not only because of the friendships that came with it, but the experiences I was able to leave with year after year. While choir took hold of my life when I first joined, I still wasn’t completely sure about what I wanted to do. After a couple years of middle school choir, it was time for me to be in an audition choir. It was this first year of high school that my eyes were opened to how much I didn’t know about music. I got challenged and loved being able to learn about different things. My teachers changed the way I looked at music and ultimately made me realize that being a choir teacher was something I needed to pursue. I started looking at the methods my teachers were using to get points across and thought about how I could improve them and make them my own. There was always a relieving feeling after finally performing what we had worked on for months. This made me think about how amazing it would be to teach kids to love music just as much as I have. 
There is a quote by Seth Godlin that goes, “Turning your passion into your job is easier than finding a job that matches your passion,” and I believe that it perfectly describes what I was trying to do for many years of my life. I was searching for perfection, but I had what I needed right in front of me. So many things can change once you decide what it is that you want to dream about. I am a prime example of this very experience. 

© Aleyna House. All rights reserved. If you are interested in quoting this story, contact the national team through this website and we can put you in touch with the young person's teacher.