January 10, 2024

Your Permission to Start Now! And How to Help Your Teen Be Degree Free in 2024 (DF#131)

Your Permission to Start Now! And How to Help Your Teen Be Degree Free in 2024

Your Teen's Path to Success Without Degrees

Are high school students stressing over classes that don't contribute to their future life skills?

In this episode, we explore the frustration of wasting energy on meaningless pursuits and the importance of parents' guidance.

We also delve into the value of branded tech certifications, career opportunities in software tools, and the relevance of subjects in school. Join us for an eye-opening conversation!

What you’ll learn:

- Discover how SAS and similar companies create certification programs to educate and enable talent to maintain their systems.
- Learn how gaining experience, developing a portfolio, and applying for jobs are crucial even with certifications.
- Explore how parents can set their children up to be degree-free in 2024 by researching their skills, focusing on practical skills at school, and emphasizing financial literacy and job-seeking skills.
- Examine the importance of viewing education as a lifelong process of self-study and discovery, with the idea of graduating high school with a resume to enter the workforce or pursue chosen careers.
- Understand the significance of practical experience, building a resume, and taking initiative for teenagers aiming to enter the workforce without a degree.

Don't miss this enlightening episode as we challenge the college system, embrace practical skills, and empower high school students to create their own paths.

Tune in for valuable insights and inspiration on how to make yourself more appealing to employers. Let's redefine success together!

Enjoy the episode!

Desperate for an alternative to the college debt trap for your teen?

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Checkout our book, The Degree Free Way, to Help Your Teenager Save $100,000, Stop Feeling Overwhelmed, and Start Getting Excited About Their Future.

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Gear up for the future with our latest episode where we explore the transformative concept of 'down credentialing,' unveiling predictions for 2024, from the rise of Degree Free healthcare to AI dominance—tune in now to stay ahead of the curve!

Links and Notes from the Episode

Episode Summary:

In this episode, Hannah expresses frustration with high school students stressing over classes that don't contribute to their life skills, believing this energy and time could be better spent. Ryan mentions Matt Scicchitano, the SAS global certification program manager, while discussing how SAS helps companies make sense of data and the need for certified talent.

Hannah highlights the value of branded tech certifications like Salesforce or HubSpot, as they provide job opportunities and career advancement by certifying individuals in specific tools. They advise parents to set their children up to be Degree Free in 2024 by researching their skills and interests for suitable jobs, focusing on getting a high school diploma or GED, and prioritizing practical skills like financial literacy and job-seeking.

They criticize the current high school curriculum for lacking relevance and motivation, stating that students should not stress over classes that don't contribute to life skills. Parents are encouraged to support their children in exploring interests outside of school and gain practical experience in their desired fields, as well as graduate with a resume.

The importance of taking action and getting started in pursuing a career or interest is emphasized and permission is not needed and certifications or degrees may not always be necessary. Examples of fields like photography, welding, and mechanics are given, with the encouragement to learn and do as one goes along. Seeking guidance from professionals in the desired field, asking questions, and trying new things are also highlighted.

Connect with Ryan:

Connect With Hannah:

Action Steps & Recommendations:

  • Research your child's skills and interests to find suitable jobs
  • Focus on helping your child graduate high school or obtain a GED
  • Encourage your child to explore their interests outside of school and gain practical experience
  • Graduate high school with a resume by working on projects, volunteering, or finding part-time work in their desired industries
  • Understand your schedule and preferences after graduation to plan your future career
  • Take action and just get started in pursuing a career or interest
  • Seek guidance from professionals in the desired field, ask questions, and try new things


  • 00:00:00 - The frustration of high schoolers stressing over classes that don't contribute to life skills
  • 00:08:20 - Discussion about tech certifications and their value to companies
  • 00:10:22 - Opportunities in using software tools more efficiently and the potential savings
  • 00:13:38 - How parents can set up their kids to be Degree Free in 2024
  • 00:17:44 - High school doesn't matter, focus on graduating and getting a GED
  • 00:21:21 - The importance of teaching practical life skills to high schoolers
  • 00:23:59 - Focus on classes that matter
  • 00:24:47 - Importance of exploring interests
  • 00:26:30 - Using school as an exploratory tool
  • 00:33:37 - Finding jobs based on needs and wants
  • 00:34:29 - Building a resume in high school
  • 00:35:59 - The importance of just getting started

References, Resources Mentioned & Suggested Reading:

Episode Transcript
Please enjoy this transcript or our episode!

Please note the transcript may have a few errors. We're human. It can be hard to catch all the errors from a full length conversation. Enjoy!

Hannah Maruyama [00:00:00]:
Parents, this is on you. You need to help your kids strategically cut bait. If there are relevant free programs that are attached to your high school or vo tech programs, those are the things you need to be focused on. Your kids do need their GED or their high school diploma. All the stats, all the data says that as long as they graduate high school and or have a GED, they will be totally fine in life. They will. If they graduate high school, that's it. And in order to graduate high school, they needed to be able to read and write.

Hannah Maruyama [00:00:30]:
That's pretty much it. Reading, writing, math.

Ryan Maruyama [00:00:37]:
And we're back. Back again in the temporary studio, although you got a more permanent fixture Going on over there. You got a mic stand.

Hannah Maruyama [00:00:46]:
I did. I did. You don't have one. I have privileges, and so I have a mic stand.

Ryan Maruyama [00:00:50]:
Yes. I want a mic stand, and so I think, really, what we should do is we should just move into the new studio.

Hannah Maruyama [00:00:57]:
And then we could put our mics on the table like humans.

Ryan Maruyama [00:00:59]:
Right. But we haven't done that yet.

Hannah Maruyama [00:01:02]:
So here we are.

Ryan Maruyama [00:01:03]:
So here we are, and I'm probably gonna get a mic stand.

Hannah Maruyama [00:01:06]:
Further enable us to not move into the new studio. Yes. We will spend lots of time and money in order to not do things. Yeah.

Ryan Maruyama [00:01:18]:
Exactly. Exactly. So I'm gonna start off because I forgot someone. A few weeks back Before the end of the year, I did a episode of a year in review of all the podcast guests that we had, And it was a very manual process of me going through. I've since updated the process and made it way easier, way more effective for me to Find who and when the podcast guests came because before, it was just on the Kanban board and everything like that. It was Our Kanban for this podcast episode is huge. And so, anyway, that's a long way of saying I messed up And I forgot somebody. And so I wanted to start really quickly and talk about the person that I forgot in my year end review.

Ryan Maruyama [00:02:04]:
And if you haven't Seen that episode yet? I will put links to the show notes, degreefree.c0forward/podcast. A couple of weeks ago, I did a entire year review of all Of the podcast episode guests that we had and the number one takeaway that I got from the episode, and, hopefully, you did too. Like I said in the episode, hopefully, you had the time to listen to all of our guests because all of them were great. But if you didn't And you don't have time, going back to that episode and listening is a good wrap up for it. And I'm gonna add an addendum here. So I had on Matt Scicatano, and Matt is the manager at SAS or SAS Global Certification Program. I can't believe that I forgot him in this episode.

Hannah Maruyama [00:02:54]:
For two reasons, because he out bearded you for 1. And for 2, he has the most fun last name to say ever. Shikitano. Shikitano.

Ryan Maruyama [00:03:06]:
That is not True. I'd he did not out beard me.

Hannah Maruyama [00:03:10]:
He did, though.

Ryan Maruyama [00:03:11]:
There's no way. He's much more distinguished. He's got a little bit of, Salt and pepper going on in it.

Hannah Maruyama [00:03:19]:
Guys, you know what? Go back. Watch Magic Catano's episode, and let Ryan know in the reviews. But I think that he did get out bearded.

Ryan Maruyama [00:03:26]:
I will put links to his episode in this show notes, and then go to that episode and comment on that episode and who has the better beard.

Hannah Maruyama [00:03:34]:
I'm sorry, but I'm trying to be objective here, man.

Ryan Maruyama [00:03:39]:
The reason why I can't believe that I forgot about Machecatano was that It absolutely blew my mind because prior to meeting him, I had no idea that what he did and does Is a career at all, which sounds really stupid to say because I should know that This is a career because of the virtue of, like, what we do, but it just goes to show you don't know what you don't know. And so What does Matt do as a global certification program manager at SAS? And for those that don't know, and I didn't know what SAS was before this. They call it So I'm just gonna call it SAS.

Hannah Maruyama [00:04:18]:
SAS, but SAS.

Ryan Maruyama [00:04:20]:
Yeah. Not software as a service, but SAS. So SAS is a global data enablement platform, API, coding language. Companies That want to understand more about their data. They hook into the SaaS platform and they Make sense of their data using their platform.

Hannah Maruyama [00:04:43]:
Thank you for explaining it like I'm 5.

Ryan Maruyama [00:04:45]:
I mean, I can only explain it like that because I am also 5. So what's interesting about that episode was a global company creating certification programs to educate talent to help upkeep Their systems because they have a two sided problem. All of these SaaS companies now, like software as a service and not SAS, not only do they have to create an amazing, amazing product and then have businesses adopt it and have user adoption, But then they also need to train and enable an entire talent pool so that those people can work on, build up, and maintain those systems within those companies. Because here's what happens. The salesman go into the companies and say, hey. We can hook in SAS into the business and help you make sense of your data. And they're like, oh, that's great. How are we gonna do that? If you're a small company, you say, well, I have a bunch of people.

Ryan Maruyama [00:05:45]:
I have a team of developers. I have a bunch of implementation specialists that can come in here white glove, do this whole thing for you, and it's gonna cost you a lot of money or whatever. It's gonna cost you x amount of dollars, And you can do that as a small business. But when you start to get larger and larger and larger, the answer has to become, Oh, well, we have certification programs that train people, that train talent, you, the people listening to this, on how to implement and maintain these systems. And here are how many people that have gone through the certification program this year. And so if you By now, if you put this into your systems and use our product, you're gonna have no problem Finding talent to then come in, architect this thing, implement this thing, and then ultimately maintain Upkeep and make sense of the data of this system. And so for those people that are thinking about getting branded certifications like Salesforce, HubSpot, or SaaS, Anything like that, ServiceNow, this is a great, great episode to listen to because like I said, it just gives you a peek behind the curtain of what is involved in actually making these tests, these certifications, making sure that the process in and of itself is fair, making sure that not only the process of you taking the test And enabling you to learn the material and take the test, but then also the material that you're getting tested on is fair. It was a fascinating fascinating episode.

Ryan Maruyama [00:07:23]:
I apologize, Matt. If you're watching this, I forgot, and it won't happen again. But you got a whole segment to yourself.

Hannah Maruyama [00:07:30]:
I'm glad you brought this up because tech certifications are a really sticky topic for a lot of people. They don't understand why companies are making them and how to differentiate which ones are worth getting and which ones are not. And the general rule of thumb is that if it is a company that has a branded certification, this is not a boot camp that's gonna give you a certification after you learn something. This is a company that is certifying you to use their product. The reason they do that, their financial incentive for doing so, is if you understand how to use their product, it is very likely that they will make money off of you being able to use their product because you will encourage the company that you work for to increase the amount of product that you're buying from them, to extend contracts, to add more features and all of that kind of stuff. And so that's why these companies do that. That's why Salesforce certifications are valuable. It's because Salesforce is certifying you to use their tool.

Hannah Maruyama [00:08:24]:
It's like being certified to use a hammer. It's the same thing. If you understand how to use a hammer or a certain line of drills, right, if you understand how to use Ryobi tools, you're gonna continue to use Ryobi tools because those are the battery packs that you have. That's the type tool you like to work with, you like the weight of it, whatever. So if you're fixing a problem, you're gonna continue to buy Ryobi tools. And that's the same reason why branded tech certifications are actually valuable.

Ryan Maruyama [00:08:48]:
It can be valuable. It just depends. As this goes to how to find job backwards, and we've talked about this before, it really depends on what you're trying to do, and what industry you're trying to get into. And that's why you have to do the how to find a job backwards, which I think was episode 78. It's the 1st episode of last year, of 2023, and I'll link it in the show notes as well. They can be valuable. It doesn't necessarily mean just because you get these tech certifications that you're automatically gonna get hired. You still have to do the work.

Ryan Maruyama [00:09:17]:
You still have to gain experience. You still have to build a portfolio. Still have to apply to a 1,000 jobs. Just because you get a certification doesn't mean that

Hannah Maruyama [00:09:26]:
Doesn't guarantee you a job.

Ryan Maruyama [00:09:27]:
Right. Exactly. And so I wanna be clear about that. What I found interesting talking with Matt was along the lines of what you were saying is training people to use the tools And training people on the tools capabilities. Matt and I were talking. And according to a survey that he quoted, he said that Companies that acquire business software typically only use, like, 10 to 15% of the software's capabilities. And so from a career enablement perspective, like, from our own selfish perspective, that bodes to have a lot of opportunity. So what do I mean by that? Well, if you are only using 10 to 15% of a certain software tools capabilities, then that probably means That you have a bunch of different softwares in your business and in your organization that all overlap because you're only using 10 to 15% of each One, if you educated within this system, let's say that it's SAS.

Ryan Maruyama [00:10:27]:
You are able to look At the feature set, you're able to look at what your current business process is, and you're able to then say, hey. You know, SaaS, Salesforce, ServiceNow, whatever, HubSpot.

Hannah Maruyama [00:10:44]:
Oracle, AWS.

Ryan Maruyama [00:10:45]:
Insert the SaaS product, the software as a service product name in there that you're using, this has the ability to do what these other 3 tools are doing, or this has the ability to do the work of what this other 7 tools are doing. And all we have to do is This, this, and this. And it has an opportunity

Hannah Maruyama [00:11:07]:
To upsell.

Ryan Maruyama [00:11:07]:
For well, that's from the perspective of the company. I'm not talking about that. I'm talking about the perspective of your own career. Taking this selfishly, you have the opportunity to create a presentation, you have the opportunity to say, hey. I think that we could be using this tool better, more efficiently. You can lay out how it looks like, what the work required to do to implement it is, what their work required to maintain it is, and then the possible savings on the back end. So you say, okay. I am getting rid of these 7 tools.

Ryan Maruyama [00:11:43]:
And then while I'm getting rid of these 7 tools, or monthly subscription for this, our annual subscription price for this is only raised by $100,000, and we're getting rid of these tools that cost a half a 1000000, and then well, this is kinda up. But we're also getting rid of 7 other people that have to maintain these things where as we can hire 2 other people, so net 5 people in the company and saving A $100,000 or a 100,000 plus on just the software subscription and then possibly getting rid of overhead as well, Saving the company a lot of money.

Hannah Maruyama [00:12:20]:
And making a case for your skill set to eventually pay you more and or give you more responsibility also.

Ryan Maruyama [00:12:26]:
And Matt and I talked about this. When your bosses say yes, who is the 1st person that they're gonna think of to lead this whole project? More than likely or at least be a contributor to it.

Hannah Maruyama [00:12:37]:
Yeah, because you're the one who brought it up. Exactly.

Ryan Maruyama [00:12:40]:
And they're they're like, yeah. This makes a lot of sense. Okay. We'll get with the right people. Let's see if we can do this. Get with the technical team. See if we can do this. And

Hannah Maruyama [00:12:48]:
also a good time to ask a company to pay for further education and certifications for you as well.

Ryan Maruyama [00:12:53]:
All in all, Great, great episode, and I'm sorry that I forgot it.

Hannah Maruyama [00:12:57]:
So go check out the beards in the episode. Tell us what you think. Alright. So we're in the new year, And I want to talk about how parents can set up their kids to be degree free in 2024. This is something that's gonna be really relevant for a lot of you, but especially those of you who have kids who are about to graduate this upcoming spring slash summer, listen up because this is gonna be useful for you. So the first thing that you can do to set your child up to be degree free in 2024 is to do some research on your child's skill set, so things that they're already good at, things that they're already interested in, and see what types of jobs may be a good fit for them. Because they're coming up on graduation, and this is about to be really important. And it's gonna be really important, especially for the seniors, but even for the juniors start planning what their senior year looks like and what their goals are to get done in that next year.

Hannah Maruyama [00:13:49]:
So that's a big one. I made a video a few weeks ago where I talked about not stressing your child out to pass classes that don't matter. That one was pretty controversial because people were saying, are you telling kids to drop out of high school? And I said, no. What I'm saying is they only need to be focused on graduating. They just need to be focused on getting their diploma or getting their GED. That's it. Everything else is a distraction because it's not going to help them after they graduate high school, after they get out. Because there are a ton of uses classes.

Hannah Maruyama [00:14:21]:
A lot of the kids that are currently in high school, they're really unmotivated because a lot of the curriculum, a lot of the material, a lot of the time that they're spending is really unmotivating. And no wonder they're not interested in it. I realize this sounds like kind of a crazy thing to say. Because basically, what I'm saying is school doesn't matter. That is basically what I'm saying. I'm saying your high school doesn't really matter. And that for a multitude of reasons upset quite a few people.

Ryan Maruyama [00:14:45]:
High school matter to me. I was the man in high school.

Hannah Maruyama [00:14:47]:
Oh my gosh. Anybody that says I was a man in high school was not the man in high school. I've seen pictures of you in high school.

Ryan Maruyama [00:14:57]:
It's funny. I I my friend and I, It was like there's like 4 of us. We're talking this is many, many years ago now, but it was a few years after high school. And We were not the men in high school.

Hannah Maruyama [00:15:13]:
You don't you don't say?

Ryan Maruyama [00:15:15]:
Not at all. And So I was talking to this group of 3 other guys, 4 of us, and I was like, yeah. You know, we just we weren't really in the cool crowd. We weren't really The cool guys, the nerdiest out of all the 4 of us, literally, he just like, I don't know. That was pretty cool.

Hannah Maruyama [00:15:33]:
He was not cool.

Ryan Maruyama [00:15:34]:
Yeah. He was not cool. He's still not cool. He would probably be cool today because all he did was game Back then and then games are, like, completely in. And now he's an engineer, and it's, like, really cool to be studious and geeky and dorky and stuff like that. But back in the aughts. When I was going to high school, it was not cool at all.

Hannah Maruyama [00:15:57]:
Okay, guys. Ryan gets really upset about this. Actually, he frequently gets really upset because gaming is cool now, and he feels like people that game now didn't earn their stripes being lame.

Ryan Maruyama [00:16:06]:
Yeah. Then you get picked on. Now it's like, oh, yeah. Of course, I watch anime.

Hannah Maruyama [00:16:10]:
This is a really tame reaction. This is a thrice weekly rant that we have in this household.

Ryan Maruyama [00:16:17]:
Oh. Oh, you watch anime? It's like, it's called it's pronounced anime. God. Alright. Yeah. I I mean, I know. I was literally reading manga and watching anime, Literally in Japanese for years, I would wait to get the weekly Scanlations is what they called it on these terrible God

Hannah Maruyama [00:16:37]:
bless you.

Ryan Maruyama [00:16:37]:
Yeah, websites for manga. And I would be reading it, Like, every Thursday, a a new Narutow came out, and I would be like, oh my god. This is this is awesome. This is awesome. This is awesome. And people made fun of me For doing that. But now it's, like, really cool all of a sudden. Like, you see you see, like, grown men in the mall.

Ryan Maruyama [00:16:58]:
I don't know. I don't go to the mall. But, like, the these You imagine them in a mall? I imagine them in a mall. But you see them running With the Naruto arms, and you're just like and it's like, cool now. Good for them.

Hannah Maruyama [00:17:11]:
That's not how you feel. What do you feel like they should have to go through in order to be able to be at the same level as No.

Ryan Maruyama [00:17:18]:
I'm just traumatized. That's all. High school doesn't matter for most people. High school High school matter for me.

Hannah Maruyama [00:17:24]:
Because you were the man.

Ryan Maruyama [00:17:25]:
I was the man. Go on.

Hannah Maruyama [00:17:26]:
You were so okay. I realize it sounds crazy to say that paying attention in high school doesn't matter, but it doesn't. Most of us need our GED or a diploma. That's it. You only need to focus on the things that it takes for you to get your GED or to graduate high school. That's it. The people who I'm sure are gonna be the most upset about this and have the most to say about this are gonna be teachers. And you know what? I don't wanna hear it.

Hannah Maruyama [00:17:49]:
Every single other video on TikTok, every single other video I see is a teacher talking about how the curriculum is terrible, how they are not supported, how the system is failing kids, and they're graduating and they can't even read. So if that is the case, why in the world, you cannot simultaneously have it both ways. It cannot be that the system is an abject failure and that it's failing students. It's failing teachers, it's not teaching them anything. The material is not valuable or applicable. And at the same time, pretend that it is essential and super important to these kids' success that they pour their time, energy, and emotion into the system that is utterly a complete failure. Parents, this is on you. You need to help your kids strategically cut bait.

Hannah Maruyama [00:18:35]:
If there are relevant free programs that are attached to your high school or vo tech programs, those are the things you need to be focused on. Your kids do need their GED or their high school diploma. All the stats, all the data says that as long as they graduate high school and or have a GED, they will be totally fine in life. They will. If they graduate high school, that's it. And in order to graduate high school, they needed to be able to read and write. That's pretty much it. Reading, writing, math.

Hannah Maruyama [00:19:02]:
Everything else is a distraction for most of us.

Ryan Maruyama [00:19:04]:
Hey there. I hope you're enjoying this episode of the degree free podcast. At degree free, we wanna help Everyone thrive and succeed without needing a college degree. And the only way to truly reach everyone is with your help. If you're getting value out of this episode or if this is your second, 3rd or 4th episode that you're tuning into, if you could just ship this to a friend, just click that one button and share it with someone in your contacts or on your stories, it would mean the world to us. And more importantly, get our message out to more people Who need help getting out of their current situation. If you could do that right now, that would mean a whole lot. So prior to that last sentence, I I don't think I agreed with you, but then you added the last sentence and then that caveat.

Ryan Maruyama [00:19:46]:
Yes. Reading, writing, and math. Yeah. I agree. I think that's all, all they need. They need arithmetic, and it's not even that high level of math, you need arithmetic. That's really what you need. Ideally, you go higher into math, going deeper into a field that Uses a lot of math.

Ryan Maruyama [00:20:02]:
If you're going into engineering or if you're going into some other type of math related field Where you're actually applying it physics, those types of things, you really need a solid base in math. But other than that, Most people just need to learn reading, writing, and arithmetic.

Hannah Maruyama [00:20:21]:
Ideally, some level of financial literacy too, but schools don't teach that.

Ryan Maruyama [00:20:24]:
That's That's exactly what I was just about to say, which is what schools don't teach is the things that people need to know. Financial literacy, being one of them, and then how to be a job seeker and what it means to be a job seeker is another as well. Seemingly learning to job seek and job seeking and landing jobs and getting promotions is one of the most important things in your life Because it it is going to enable you to do everything else. With the money that you make from your job, you are going to then be able to provide for your family, buy things, go on vacation, have weekends off, all of that stuff, and they don't teach it. And so if they taught that stuff, Then I would say you're wrong, but they don't teach people how to be job seekers.

Hannah Maruyama [00:21:14]:
And we all gotta work. And I don't mean we're all gonna have to have w two jobs, but we're all gonna have to work in order to be able to afford to live. So not teaching high school graduates, not teaching high schoolers how to do that is crazy. Alright. We've gone on some rapid trails, but a few other things that I think you can do in order to prepare your kids to be degree free in 2024. There's a great phrase that I heard from Mike Wheeler, and he teaches a Salesforce course that's actually how I got my 1st tech job. And he said his goal for all of his kids, and he has 7, so he knows what he's talking about, was to graduate high school with a resume. So all of his kids or he has one still that's, young enough to be at home, but the rest are all old enough.

Hannah Maruyama [00:21:54]:
They're all graduated from high school. And he said all of them graduated with a professional resume, so they were immediately able to go out and get work. And all of them are degree free. And all of them have successful, from what he said, I believe, 6 figure tech jobs. So, obviously, that worked. I really like this concept, and it made me think of ways that high schoolers can gain this type of experience in different areas. And this is something you and I talk about a lot, but it's building your own project and then documenting it. It.

Hannah Maruyama [00:22:23]:
And even the process of doing that is gonna teach you a lot. Examples of projects that your teenager can build in order to graduate with a resume would be fix a car, build an app, create 10 to 15 pieces of artwork. We get questions a lot about how can my child become an illustrator or an animator or an artist. And the answer is they need to do those things, and then they need to show people that they've done those things. That is the answer. If your child wants to be a charcoal artist, well, then they need start drawing in charcoal and then showing people that they're drawing in charcoal. That's what they have to do. Your child can volunteer.

Hannah Maruyama [00:22:52]:
They can look for part time work in an industry that interests them that they want to get into, they can do that by calling local business owners, they could call a local watchmaker. They could call a local pool cleaning company. They can call a local dry cleaners. They can call a local graphic design firm and see if they can go do part time work and just be around people that are doing the work they wanna do. Another thing you can do to help your child prepare to be degree free in 2024 is ask them how they'd like their days weeks to look like after graduation. So many kids are so busy that they have no idea what it looks like after high school. That's understandable because they're not post high school, so how would they know? But they have no concept of how much free time they're gonna have if they choose to do so because their schedules are so jam packed with school, and sports, and extracurricular activities, and for some of them, college prep and SAT, and then they're just constantly going, going, going. And that is not the reality of how their schedules are probably going to look after they graduate high school.

Hannah Maruyama [00:23:51]:
And so sit down with your kids and have them start to paint a picture of if they could design what their day looks like, when would they work? If they could work certain days of the week or have certain days off, which would those days be and why? Because what are they gonna do with those days? Do they get like to go out with their friends on Saturdays? And just ask them, what days do you wanna have off? Why? And then what kind of schedule would you like to work during the week? It will help you get an understanding of the types of careers and jobs that would suit them.

Ryan Maruyama [00:24:18]:
Yeah. This is super basic stuff. You can even do this as a job seeker, As a career changer, in fact, this is the first thing that you're gonna do when you are trying to change careers, when you're trying to get a new job, is that you're gonna look at what you need and what you want. And so just as you would do it for yourself, what do I need? Well, I need to make $60,000 a year, and I need to work 20 hours a week. Whatever it is, write it down. Same thing with your child. You would go over their needs and their wants, and then you would prioritize their needs and not their wants. So I need to make $12 an hour and I need to work at least 35 hours a week in order to pay my bills.

Ryan Maruyama [00:25:02]:
Okay. Perfect. Do you care what it is that you do? No. Not really. Perfect. Do you care what time of day that you work? No. Not really. Do you care if it's Outside, inside, food service, construction, computer work? No.

Ryan Maruyama [00:25:17]:
Not really. Perfect. That's super easy. $12 an hour, 35 hours a week, you could literally go work anywhere. But okay. So you wanna work in construction. Perfect. Now you go work in construction.

Ryan Maruyama [00:25:29]:
Oh, I wanna work with a computer. There's a gajillion jobs that work on computers that make $12 an hour and 35 hours a week. And so That is a perfect place to start with needs and wants. I wanna talk about building the resume in high school just for a second. A lot of parents ask us, how does my child get into x job or x industry? That's always the question that we get asked. The number 1 question is, like, well, they're gonna be degree free. What can they do? That's, like, the number 1 question. But downstream from that, eventually, Once you've decided that you can go degree free and your child's going to degree free is okay.

Ryan Maruyama [00:26:08]:
They want to do this. How can they do it? The answer Is usually for, like, 99% of jobs, it's just to go and do it. Like, I'm giving you permission right now. Whatever it is, just go and do it. Okay. If you want to be a photographer, go take photographs. If you want to Be in physics in some way, shape, or form, go learn physics. Go do it.

Ryan Maruyama [00:26:35]:
You wanna be in applied physics, some sort of engineering? Some okay. Go do it. Perfect.

Hannah Maruyama [00:26:40]:
It's very much a mentality, and this is what we you when you and I talk about the papered mindset. I just had a call with a teacher who was trying to become a photographer, and she asked me. She said, hey, there's this photography certification. And I was just, like, no. No. No. No. No.

Hannah Maruyama [00:26:55]:
You don't need a photography certification. You need to take photographs. You need to take a lot of photographs. You need to take bad photos. You need to take good photos. You need to take bad photos that you then edit and learn how to edit into good photos. That's what you need to do. And I think for a lot of people, just do is so unknown that they're scared of it.

Hannah Maruyama [00:27:13]:
And so like you said, just here's the permission. If you want to do something, you don't have to ask anyone for permission. You don't need to buy a certification. You just need to go do whatever that thing is. And for those of you whose kids, especially the ones that wanna get into creative fields, your child wants to be in fashion design. Your child does not need to go buy a college you do that. I'm sorry. If they wanna be in leather work, they need to go find some a tannery to work at.

Hannah Maruyama [00:27:37]:
If your child wants to paint, they need to go paint. That's what they need to do.

Ryan Maruyama [00:27:40]:
It's not just for creative fields though because this is a good start for anybody. Let's say they wanted to be a mechanic, And a lot of mechanics, if you work at a garage, they want you to be ASE certified or other certifications. Like, You need this type of certification for the air conditioner. You need this type of certification for the brake system, whatever, whatever, whatever. Okay. That's great. You're gonna get there eventually. You just first have to start by getting a pair of tools, Borrowing a set of tools and then working on a car.

Ryan Maruyama [00:28:14]:
That's the perfect place to start. Start there. And then as you get around more people working on cars, as you work on more cars yourself, as you start to gain interest, as you start to realize, like, yeah, this is something that I wanna do, you are going to start looking at what does it really take, what does it really require to do this as a career? And then you're gonna find out, oh, okay. I need to get this certification, or I need to learn this skill. Perfect. Then I'm gonna put that on my to do list, and I'm I'm going to get certified in this, or I'm gonna go and learn this specific skill. But you don't have to know it right at The outset is that, okay. Directionally, this is the way that I wanna go.

Ryan Maruyama [00:28:54]:
And so photography is a perfect example. Okay. So what type of photos do you wanna take? Well, I really wanna do portraits. Okay. That's awesome. Or I really wanna do wedding photography. This is actually a better one. Oh, why do you wanna do wedding photography? Oh, because I just wanna be there when the bride is looking her prettiest and their in their happiest days, so on and so forth, so on and so forth.

Ryan Maruyama [00:29:16]:
But then you actually become a wedding photographer. You actually the 2nd cam on something, like your friend has a wedding photography business, and you ask to be the 2nd camera on it, and then you realize, like, oh my god. This is Bridezilla.

Hannah Maruyama [00:29:28]:
The worst.

Ryan Maruyama [00:29:29]:
This is, like, terrible. This lady is yelling at me because I missed whatever whatever whatever. Like

Hannah Maruyama [00:29:35]:
Some minus thing I couldn't remember.

Ryan Maruyama [00:29:37]:
Not even the cake cutting or not even, like, ceremony, not even the 1st kiss or the 1st dance. You didn't miss any of that, but, like, you missed your mom pretending to pin on something to your dress that didn't matter and just like, what? Like, I don't wanna do this at all, but at least you went out there and you did the job. Yeah. Okay. But you do like taking photos, and you're just like, you know what I really like is after you do more research, like, I actually like product photography a lot. I like the way that lighting and stills can tell an entire story about a product and make people buy this and influence people to take an action. That is really cool to me. Or you might find that you like an entirely different medium.

Ryan Maruyama [00:30:18]:
Like, I really like video. Photography is a little bit too stale. I want to tell a bigger story than that, and so I'm gonna get into videography. The key is to just get started. And for a lot of people that don't have that mindset, they need permission. And so this is your permission, as you said. Like

Hannah Maruyama [00:30:37]:
do it.

Ryan Maruyama [00:30:37]:
This is it. Go do it. Go have your kids do it. Whatever it is, go and do it. If there are gates, Like, literal things that are in their way, like certifications, degrees for very limited amount of people, things of that nature, licenses.

Hannah Maruyama [00:30:54]:
When you encounter them, then deal with it.

Ryan Maruyama [00:30:56]:
Exactly. But first, just get started.

Hannah Maruyama [00:30:59]:

Ryan Maruyama [00:30:59]:
Just get started in that industry.

Hannah Maruyama [00:31:01]:
If you are humble and if you are interested and if you are sincere, it doesn't matter who you are. It doesn't matter where you come from. Most people want to help people that are humble, sincere, and interested, and willing to learn something. All you have to do is ask. All you have to do is ask. And so for parents, the best thing you can do is encourage your child to ask and try

Ryan Maruyama [00:31:22]:
stuff. I would add on to that that it's not just ask, although asking is good, but it's really just doing. Because If you wanna be a welder, what should you do? Weld. You should weld. That's it. You wanna be a mechanic? Well, you should go fix cars.

Hannah Maruyama [00:31:35]:
But the thing about the welding is that not everybody has access to the tools. Right? So they need to get the tools, and they have a little bit of oversight and someone to say, oh, just do it like this or show them how to do it.

Ryan Maruyama [00:31:44]:
I completely understand that. What I mean by go do is figure out a way to go and do that and go and accomplish any of the tasks required To then go do that. And so we've been talking about photography. What do you need to do to take photographs? You need a camera. Right. So what do you need to do to edit those pictures? Do you need software? You need a computer. Okay. You don't have any of that? Figure out how

Hannah Maruyama [00:32:06]:
to get it. Or borrow somebody else's.

Ryan Maruyama [00:32:07]:
That's what I'm saying. That's literally what I'm saying is do and figure out. Okay. I need to take photographs. There's 17 other things that I need to do in order for me to take a photograph and then deliver a finished product to somebody. I need to itemize those task, figure out what those are, and then just start checking off every single one. K. Camera, perfect.

Ryan Maruyama [00:32:28]:
SD card, perfect. Lens, Perfect. You know what I mean? Boom. Boom. Boom. Boom. Boom. Yeah.

Ryan Maruyama [00:32:34]:
Photos, lights, flash, not flash, continuous lighting. Ugh. I don't know. You're gonna figure it out.

Hannah Maruyama [00:32:40]:

Ryan Maruyama [00:32:41]:
Yeah. And I think that's a perfect place to leave off, Matt. Once again, sorry that I forgot. Great, great episode for everybody listening. I'll have links to everything that we talked about at degreefree.c0forward/podcast. As usual, until next time, guys.

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