In an address to Stanford University graduates,┬áSteve Jobs mentioned that dropping into a calligraphy class, which at the time seemed trivial, was one of the most influential pieces to the current Macintosh’s visually-appealing typography. There is great opportunity and growth for career development when you start pursuing skills that you find passion in, even if it doesn’t always seem relevant to your job. Stepping outside of your comfort zone allows you to look at your current role from a different perspective.

Whether it is a free online course or a full-time class at Park U, there are endless low-cost options to expand your skill set. Choose a creative outlet or something that’s always intrigued you and master it! Here are some of the skills I’d like to acquire:

Coding

I can think of two instances in just the past few weeks where I was out of the loop of a conversation solely because I didn’t understand the technical language that was being used. See video below – that was me trying to understand something I had little user knowledge of. Luckily, I can upload videos to Facebook.

 

By no means am I out to be a coder or programmer, but I am aiming to better understand the basics, process, and have the capability to understand limitations and possibilities. Personally and professionally, it is important to stay in tune with different ideas within the ever-changing technology field.

Video Editing

Have you ever watched a video and been completely overwhelmed with emotion, felt immediate goosebumps or been passionate enough to make a change in your life or others’ lives? I have. Of course part of that feeling comes from the writing and the presentation of a message that someone is sharing, but a good message is stuck being just a good message if the delivery isn’t there.

Most reading this know that Park University has physical campus centers all over the United States and students studying online from almost anywhere that have access to the internet. Career Development is meant for every student that attends and we continuously look for ways to connect with those at a distance. One major opportunity is through videos, sharing advice for those in different stages of their careers. Having a relevant message for viewers and the ability to present that in a meaningful way is the difference between the content sitting stagnant or not.

Graphic Design Software

To have the ability to take an idea or words that have been given and create something beautiful to spark interest is something I continue to grow fond of. The same way a video can move you, a graphic can capture an audience and direct the way an individual perceives an idea. When you see a professional’s work, it tells a story within a quick snapshot of fonts, images, and colors.

Second Language

There have been numerous times in my life that I have attempted to learn a second language…and as you can see, it is still on the list of skills that I plan to learn in the upcoming years. In my younger years, I put almost no effort into language classes and really did not see how beneficial that time would have been for my future. Through the next years I would try a few different online language platforms but work would be busy or life would happen and it was once again put on the back burner.

I really began to understand in the last year that I needed to place an emphasis on learning the language I had wanted to speak for so many years. My two-year-old son is currently learning Spanish in his daycare and I constantly work with students that list they are fluent in 2-3 languages on their resumes. I am behind the skill level that I would like to be in this specific area and have made a plan to put much more time towards it in the next few months/years.

What skills outside of the norm for your profession do you plan to learn in the near future?