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Zoe Black, Master of Business Administration

Is it too late to change careers?

Published 7 May, 2021  ·  8-minute read

If you’ve got the drive and passion for a new field of work, you can change careers no matter your age.

That’s the resounding message from Zoë Black, Nicolai Ahlstrand and Susan Mizrahi, three UQ postgraduate alumni who are now pioneers in their respective industries and living proof that it’s never too late to change careers.

But it’s one thing to say you can drop everything (including an established career) to pursue a newfound ambition. Doing so is another – and it takes time and work.

We asked these career-changing role models:

  • how to know if it’s time to change careers
  • how they made the change themselves
  • what advice they have for others who want to do the same.

Whether you’re on the fence about leaving your current field, already committed to making a move or wondering “am I too old to change careers?”, read on for inspiration and practical tips to help you on your journey.

How to know when it’s time to change careers

Some people experience a lightbulb moment where they suddenly realise what they should be doing with their career (or, conversely, that they can no longer stay in their current job). For others, it takes time and self-reflection to get into the right headspace to consider the possibilities. Susan, Nicolai and Zoë have shared their stories below to show how every career change is unique.

"I've always deliberately sought to make career changes, moving in and out of sectors to influence systemic change." - Susan Mizrahi

Susan completed a Master of International Relations & Asian Politics at UQ and a Master of Management (Supply Chain Management) at the University of Melbourne

"I could've still been where I was before, but I wouldn't feel fulfilled like I do now." - Nick Ahlstrand

Nick considers studying the Master of Business Administration at UQ one of the best times of his life

"I'm a workaholic. So if I'm going to be working so much, I should at least enjoy the work I'm doing." - Zoe Black

Zoë fell in love with the idea of social enterprise while studying her Master of Business Administration at UQ

5 key steps for changing careers

A lightbulb moment and some inspirational examples aren’t enough to make a successful career change. So, we asked Zoë, Nicolai and Susan to share their advice for chasing your new ambitions.

Final thoughts

If you’ve read this far, you won’t be surprised by how these alumni responded when we asked them: “is it ever too late to change careers?”

That’s a definite and confident no from all three.

By following the practical advice above, you too can pursue a newfound passion – no matter your age or prior work experience.

Browse our postgraduate programs today to launch your new career journey.

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