Clueless about a future in Horticulture
Hi everyone! I have been frequenting this forum for a while and have seen many posts like this, but was hoping to get some individual advice.
I graduated from college last year with degrees in political science and business, of which I have little interest. During my time in college I spent my springs and summers working at a local nursery and since graduating I have been working with ornamentals in a greenhouse. I also write and edit articles for two online gardening magazines. So, I have about 5 years industry experience. My local college, University of Maryland, offers a 2 year degree in Ornamental Horticulture, and I am extremely interested in attending. My dream job would be to one day curate a botanical garden or open my own organic nursery. However, my parents are very concerned about my interest in this career path. Initially, they pushed me into the undergraduate degree and I wanted to comply with their wishes since they were the ones paying. Now, they are encouraging me to go for a graduate degree in law or business because my future would be "secure". I believe I would be a good lawyer or businesswoman, but have little interest in those fields and much less interest in going to school for 4+ years more. Man, do those classes sound dull.
However, I am also concerned about having a secure future. Money is not everything but I grew up very comfortably and would like to be able to provide well for a future family. I think I could earn my degree in horticulture, and with my previous experience, find a good job, something I love doing. But, my parents (and a little voice inside my head) tell me that maybe I would not be living up to my potential? Maybe in 40 years I will wake up and say, "Man I could have been a really successful lawyer". I love plants and I love working outside and I dont think I would like working in a stuffy office for the rest of my life. I am very confused right now and don't know what to do. I want to be a horticulturist and work in this industry, but I also want to be successful and not just stay in the same greenhouse position I have right now.
Can I make a living in this industry? What other degrees or certificates besides or in addition to Ornamental Horticulture should I consider? Thanks for all of your time!