What Do You Want to be When You Grow Up?

by Natalie Yuhas


I may not remember much from first grade, but I certainly do remember the day we talked about careers. We gathered around on the floor, sitting “Pretzel Style,” eagerly listening to the story about different professions. Finally, the story finished, and the teacher closed the book and set it on her lap.


“So, who knows what they want to be when they grow up?” she asked. A few tiny hands bolted into the air. “Ballerina.” “Policeman.” “Doctor.” “Veterinarian.” “Chef.” My hand lingered in the air until finally my teacher called on me.

“I want to be a saint when I grow up.”


The teacher was surprised and looked at me for a second before she responded, “Well. Maybe one day we will be reading a book about Saint Natalie.”


Since then, I have had a few more dreams. I have chosen my majors based on what types of classes I like and what talents I have. Now becoming who I want to be when I “grow up” is getting closer and closer every single second. I still think about this question from time to time: What do I want to be when I grow up? I may have more concrete dreams, but I still want to be a saint. By that I mean I want to be caring. I want to be faithful. I want to be brave. I want to be a woman for others.

The canonization of a saint is a lengthy process, and there are rigorous guidelines for what the Church considers a saint, including miracles. While it is highly unlikely that any of us at Boston College are going to be performing miracles or sacrificing our life for our faith anytime soon, we can still strive to be saints in our everyday lives.


There is a lot of pressure at BC to be perfect, well rounded students; there is pressure to get good grades, pressure to be incredibly involved in lots of clubs, pressure to be a regular at the Plex, and a pressure to go out on the weekends. Among all these things, we often get stressed and overwhelmed. There is a focus on the “I.” I am so stressed with all of these exams and tests I have this week. What meetings do I have tonight? I have to find time to fit in the Plex. What do I want to do tonight? In the midst of our busy college schedules, it isn’t difficult to lose sight of the kind of person you are becoming. For me, growing up to be a saint means to take time to focus on my faith, to volunteer my time, skills, and compassion to others, and to be virtuous, despite my busy schedule.


What do you want to be when you grow up? We are at Boston College because we are motivated students. We are striving to be CEOs, nurses, teachers, and people of the working world. However, in the midst of thinking of what you want to be, take some time to think about who you want to be.


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