What teachers would do if they couldn’t teach

Lily Schweitzer, Pembroke Meadows Elementary School third-grader, has some great dreams.

Ask her what she wants to be when she grows up, and she will tell you: “I have a lot of different ideas of what I want to be. Scientist. Teacher. An artist. I want to be an author, too. A doctor. I want to be an architect.”

Are any of those in the lead, Lily?

“Teacher, architect and scientist.”

As Lily considers becoming a teacher, we asked the 2018 Teachers of the Year what work they would want to pursue if couldn’t work in education. A few teachers refused to consider other options but many shared how they would make a career of their passions outside of the classroom. Read their responses below.

“If I could not be a teacher, I would want to be a meteorologist.  I LOVE weather!  I’ve been watching Don Slater since I was 10 years old!”

“If I could not work as a teacher, I would love to be a captain of a charter fishing boat in the Keys or a marine biologist in the Maldives. I love to fish, interact with a variety of people, be on or in the water, explore and understand the interconnectivity of nature, travel and research new things.”

“I would have been an engineer. I discovered STEM robotics three years ago and it is fascinating!”

“I always joke that my only real skill is organization, so if I wasn’t teaching, I would probably be someone’s assistant.”

“Being a teacher has always been the only career for me. I remember a time in elementary school when I wanted to a journalist, but that was very brief. I guess teaching was my calling in life.”

“I am completely and utterly unqualified for any other job on Earth; however, if I could have any other job I wanted, it would an owner and operator of an island breakfast shop.  Great coffee, fresh, simple breakfast, open doors and ocean breezes… Regular guests would be the hope so there would be a communal atmosphere. People would share novels and anecdotes, but avoid the news. Weekends would play the morning soccer games on the TVs that are otherwise turned off.  No Wi-Fi. My kids would take it over after my wife and I are gone.”

“Prior to becoming a teacher, I was a real estate paralegal. I realized that, although I was helping people complete one of the largest purchases in their life, the job wasn’t going anywhere for me. Thus, I continued to do that job as I completed college to become an elementary school teacher.”

“I would have been an attorney. I currently teach in the Legal Studies Academy and I love this! I love law. I love knowing the law and being an informed citizen, and I love helping others understand the law.”

“If I could switch jobs and no longer be a teacher, I would have my own cabana bar.”

“If I were to switch to a non-teaching career I would be a scientist. Whenever I read articles or texts about new discoveries and how much of the world is yet to be discovered, I’m completely intrigued. Learning about interactions among organisms is extremely interesting. It would be exciting to be apart of the process and research.”

“If I wasn’t a teacher, there are two careers I would love to do and can’t quite just pick one. A veterinarian because of my love for all animals. I always want to help them, feed them and take care of whatever animal comes my way. Or a geologist, I absolutely love science and geology is one of my favorites. I fell in love with the class in college even though I was not too interested in it when the semester started. (What I really mean is, I wanted to drop the class when my professor wheeled in rock samples but I stayed in and fell in love. Who knew?!)”

“I struggle with this question as I have always wanted to be a teacher since I was a young girl, so it is a lifelong dream career of mine.  As long as I am working with educating people using mathematics or just working with youth in some learning capacity, I would be happy.”

“If I were not a teacher, I would want to be a Peace Corps volunteer. I find this appealing because it provides an opportunity to positively affect the lives of others and engage in continuous learning myself!”

“I have no other career I ever wanted. As a young child, I wanted to be a teacher. And now after 35 years of teaching, I continue to love teaching. I have lived my passion!”

“If I had another job besides for teaching, I would want to do something creative where I am making a product. I’ve been a cake decorator in the past, but I also love cooking in general. My new stress reliever is refurbishing furniture destined for a landfill.”

“It would be cool to make educational children’s television.”

“If I could not be a teacher, I would want to work at a dog rescue. Dogs are so fun and have such a positive outlook; I would love to surround myself with this joy daily! It would come with hard work and effort just like teaching but it would be rewarding.”

“Professional book reviewer – could there be a better job than to be paid to read books all day?”

“If I could not be a teacher, I would want to own a restaurant. Before becoming a teacher I was a restaurant manager and I loved it. I really enjoy working with people and making people happy.”

“Coming to teaching later in life, I sort of already did this, but in reverse. I was a professional actor for many years prior to discovering my passion for working with students. And, honestly, I can’t see myself doing it any other way!”

“I would want to be a trauma nurse – action packed and you have the opportunity to save some lives, and/or ice cream masher at Cold Stone or Amy’s in Houston. Who wouldn’t want to eat ice cream all day?”

“I would become a librarian. I love how the role of librarian has become more hands-on, allowing students to see that libraries are not just a room full of books, but a place to explore multiple learning pathways.”

“If I hadn’t become a teacher, I would have become a caterer/chef and opened my own café. I have a passion for cooking and enjoy mingling with other people to share life stories.”

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