Ask Dr. Job’s chief contributor, Sandra Pesmen, is a member of the Chicago Journalism Hall of Fame and author of “DR. JOB’s Complete Career Guide.”

Winner of several journalism awards, Pesmen is a graduate of the University of Illinois Media College at Urbana, and is listed in several Who’s Who editions. She also has been Corporate Features Editor of Crain Communications Inc., founding Features Editor of Crain’s Chicago Business and a reporter/features writer for The Chicago Daily News.

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Do what you love, not the expected

Q. My parents are pushing me to get an MBA or study law or medicine. I really am interested in creative fields and don't know how to explain it to them. They lived through lean years and want to feel I'm in a "safe" profession. What do I tell them?

Ans. Begin by telling them there's no "safe" profession anymore. Even if you have those credentials you must do creative marketing and business management to keep clients and patients in any job today. Since you're lucky enough to have creative "instincts," use them and consider yourself lucky. According to Ken Robinson, author of "The Element How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything" (Penguin $15), the way to succeed is to take an inventory of your interests and abilities and follow them into a career. He notes that during this time of massive unemployment many successful people have done just that to reinvent them selves for more satisfying careers. While that's risky, everything is, and this route often leads to greater contentment.

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