Skip to: [ search ] [ menus ] [ content ] Select style [ Aqua ] [ Citrus ] [ Fire ] [ Orange ] [ show/hide more content ]

California man trades 6-figure salary for teaching career

I found an inspirational story tonight, to which I can really “relate,” about a gentleman who lives in San Jose, 42-year-old Jon Fitch. Jon has an MBA from Vanderbilt and was leading a team of 20 people, and managing a $15 million budget at Move, Inc., toward the end of his 15-year executive marketing career.

In October, Jon left that career behind and is working on both a teaching degree and a master’s degree in political science, with plans to teach social studies at the high school level and political science at the community college level. As someone with a little exposure to teaching at both of those levels, I suspect that Jon will find the experience rewarding, and I wish him the best.

Fitch says that climbing the corporate ladder wasn’t fulfilling.

(Psssssst…. Jon, it’s not SUPPOSED to be! The goal is to get as much work out of YOU as possible with the fewest “real” rewards possible… to give you as little as possible without your LEAVING the comapny! :-) ) suggested that people who are <unnaturally> “selected for” in corporations can be “bullies” and “psychos” (now euphemistically called “antisocial personality disorder” – folks who comprise about 1% of the workforce [and general] population.)

Although 1 in 10 Americans is unemployed (more in California), those who still have jobs are increasingly miserable at work. (In high school social studies, this would have been called, “The Great Awakening,” except that this label had already been taken. :-) ) In a recent blog entry, I discussed results of a research report by the John J. Heldrich Center for Workforce Development at Rutgers, which is entitled, “The Shattered American Dream: Unemployed Workers Lose Ground, Hope, and Faith in their Futures.” In ANOTHER article, in, entitled “U.S. job satisfaction hits 22-year low,” a survey released earlier this month found that ONLY 45% of U.S. workers are satisfied with their jobs, the LOWEST LEVEL SINCE RECORD-KEEPING BEGAN 22 years ago!

Personally, I think that the increased awareness and “consciousness raising” is very healthy! Change cannot occur with people “in denial” about how BAD things actually are!

Fitch said that making the career change was difficult and that money could buy him security BUT NOT HAPPINESS. In a country that offers “… Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness,” people really NEED to “hold onto” numbers 1 and 2 :-) and to “take a shot” at number 3! :-)

“Life is short” is a truism, NOT an expression!

Fitch said:

“Part of your identity gets wrapped up in what you do, it becomes part of who you are, and to shed that skin, so to speak, is hard,” he said. “However, my experience was that money could buy security, but not happiness, and we spend too much time at our jobs not to take the risk and try something new.”

I sometimes call a move like Jon’s, “coming over from the Dark Side.” Many people in the U.S. spend almost all of the hours that they are not sleeping and eating, WORKING! (Sometimes, they are coincidentally :-) RAISING CHILDREN at the same time! Primitive humans probably had more “downtime.” All of that working goes toward making companies (that generally don’t care about their workers) quite rich. In Jon’s “new life,” he will actually have the truly (and altruistically) rewarding experience of enriching the lives of others and sharing valuable knowledge that he has gained through his experiences and education.

Personally, I have found such activities to be very rewarding, in a non-financial kind of way. :-) In addition, my photography of the natural beauty that surrounds all of us (and to which we are “blind” much of the time) helps me to keep a positive focus and direction.

The CNN article has a number of suggestions that can make changing careers a little easier. For the unemployed, changing careers may be the only path to re-employment. In the Rutgers study of the unemployed cited above, “Of the initial 1,200, 25% had found full-time jobs 15 months later, most for less pay and benefits. Of these, 40% had to change careers to be employed.”

Good luck, Jon Fitch! I think that you will enjoy the change.

-Bill at

Cheshire Cat Photo™ – “Your Guide to California’s Wonderland™”

You can view higher-resolution photos (*generally* 7-30 megabytes, compressed) at the Cheshire Cat Photo™ Pro Gallery on Shutterfly™, where you can also order prints and gifts decorated with the photos of your choice from the gallery. The Cheshire Cat Photo Store on Zazzle contains a wide variety of apparel and gifts decorated with our images of California. Framed prints and prints on canvas can be ordered from our galleries on redbubble®. All locations are accessible from here. Be a “Facebook Fan” of Cheshire Cat Photo here! If you don’t see what you want or would be on our email list for updates, send us an email at

©2011 William F. Hackett. All Rights Reserved.

No Comments to “California man trades 6-figure salary for teaching career”

  (RSS feed for these comments)

You must be logged in to post a comment.

InspectorWordpress has prevented 52153 attacks.
Get Adobe Flash player