Do you harbor the ambition to one day become a president? Well, it is not an easy task! Unlike other jobs where you are selected by a panel of human resources and recruitment specialists, the presidency is a political position that you can only obtain through an electoral process.
Fortunately for you, there are other jobs in the private and public sectors that can adequately prepare you for the top job. By analyzing some of the positions that past and current president have previously held, and assessing their relevancy to the presidency, we can confidently list the jobs held by future presidents.
1. Barack Obama - Lawyer
Before he ascended to the US presidency, Barack Obama worked briefly as a community organizer, a civil rights lawyer at two law firms between 1989 and 1990, and then as a law lecturer at the University of Chicago. Today’s young lawyers, especially those who specialize in constitutional and civil law, can follow in Obama’s footsteps. Their in-depth understanding of constitutional or civil law will help them to dispense their duties in accordance with the law, as well as uphold and protect the rights of citizens.
2. George H.W. Bush - Entrepreneur
It takes millions of dollars to run a presidential election campaign. As an entrepreneur, you will have the opportunity to run your own businesses and make the money that you can use to fund your campaign. As President of the United States, you can use your entrepreneurial personality to create jobs and drive the economy. George H.W. Bush is a perfect example of a president who was an entrepreneur. After graduating from Yale in 1948, Bush ventured into the oil industry, where he worked as an employee of Dresser Industries, and later founded Zapata Petroleum.
3. Andrew Jackson - Major General
Andrew Jackson – the 7th president of the United States – served in the US army in various capacities before rising to the rank of major general. This was in the early 1800s! Since a president is also the Commander in Chief (CIC) of the armed forces in most countries, major generals have the military skills and experience to become competent CICs.
4. James Buchanan - Diplomat
A diplomat is a person who represents his home country in a foreign nation. Ambassadors and high commissioners are the highest ranking diplomats. In this position, you will gain the foreign affairs experience a president needs to maintain strong diplomatic ties with various countries. Before he became the US’ 15th president in 1857, James Buchanan served in a number of diplomatic or foreign service positions, including envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary to Great Britain, and minister to Russia.
5. Dwight D. Eisenhower - University President
Dwight D. Eisenhower – the 34th U.S. president – is a role model to all college or university presidents who wish to move into politics and seek election as the country’s president. During his stint as the president of Columbia University, there is little doubt that Eisenhower acquired the leadership, decision-making and personnel management skills he required to excel as the president of the U.S. He also worked in the military.
6. Abraham Lincoln - Land Surveyor
The U.S. government manages about 650 million of acres. To put this land into constructive or productive use, the country needs a president with vast experience in land surveying. Abraham Lincoln, the 16th president of the US, was a professional land surveyor. Lincoln, who worked as the deputy land surveyor for New Salem in Illinois between 1833 and 1837, certainly used his surveying experience to sign the Homestead Act of 1862 into law.
7. George W. Bush - Navy Pilot
In times of war, a country looks up to the commander in chief. If you want to gain wartime experience and enhance your chances of conquering other nations as the president, you should then first consider becoming a navy pilot. It was during George W. Bush’s reign as president that the US launched extensive military operations in the Persian Gulf and Panama. Having served as a navy pilot and participated in 58 combat missions, his combat experience undoubtedly helped him order successful military operations.
8. Herbert Hoover - Engineer
Engineers can make competent presidents, too. Herbert Hoover, the 31st president of the U.S. worked as a mining engineer for Berwick, Moreing and Co., a London-based gold mining company. This was in 1897. His engineering training and experience were suited for the country’s infrastructure development, as he signed the Emergency Relief and Construction Act – which was designed to necessitate the government to fund diverse public works projects throughout the country – into law.
9. George Washington - Farmer
Yeah, you read that right! George Washington, a farmer! But he wasn’t the only one – five other American presidents worked as farmers before seeking the top seat: Thomas Jefferson, James Madison, James Monroe, James Polk, and Jimmy Carter were all either plantation owners or farmers. Carter, for example, farmed peanuts in his hometown in Georgia in the 1950s. This was after briefly serving in the military in 1953. Although agriculture is not the main economic activity in the U.S, these presidents had an easy time appealing to the millions of voters who were also farmers. This strategy may as well gain you crucial votes if you turn to farming before seeking the top seat.
10. Ronald Reagan - Actor
Ronald Reagan, the 40th president of the US, used to be a broadcaster and an actor. After signing a contract with Warner Bros. in 1937, Reagan went on to secure starring roles in several movies including Love is on the Air. His popularity in Hollywood and the larger entertainment industry saw him elected as the president of the Screen Actors Guild. Reagan’s popularity later played an important role in his election as US president. So, if you break into Hollywood and become a celebrity, you could convert your fan base into a voting bloc, thereby enhancing your chances of becoming president.
So if you want to be president, you know what occupations can steer you to your ultimate goal.
Can you think of any other jobs held by future presidents? Let us know in the comments section below!