When I was 19, I made my first good week's pay as a club musician. It was enough money for me to quit my job at the factory and still pay the rent and buy some food. I freaked. Billy Joel, musician
Billy Joel is an American singer-songwriter and pianist who has sold over 150 million records worldwide and is known for hits such as "Piano Man," "Uptown Girl," and "We Didn't Start the Fire."
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I had been keeping an off eye on the advertising field, thinking I might become an idea man and a copywriter. Carl Sandburg, poet
Carl Sandburg was an American poet, writer, and editor who won three Pulitzer Prizes for his poetry and biography.
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As a novelist, I like the contained drama and complexity of the courtroom, though I don't watch those shows on TV. I prefer the hospital shows because I wanted to be a doctor. Elizabeth Strout, author
Elizabeth Strout is an American novelist and short story writer, best known for her Pulitzer Prize-winning novel "Olive Kitteridge."
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I had no ambition to be a football coach. I wanted to be a spy for MI5 or MI6. Emma Hayes, businesswoman
Emma Hayes is a successful businesswoman and the current head coach of the Chelsea Women's Football Club.
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I'll be prime minister and a mum, and Clarke will be 'first man of fishing' and stay-at-home dad. I think it's fair to say that this will be a wee one that a village will raise, but we couldn't be more excited. Jacinda Ardern, politician
Jacinda Ardern is the current Prime Minister of New Zealand.
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I was sure I wanted to grow up to be either a veterinarian or a writer. In fact, I worked for a vet during high school, doing everything from cleaning cages to assisting in surgery. K. A. Applegate, writer
K. A. Applegate is an American author known for writing the popular children's book series, Animorphs.
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As an African, there are certain professions your family want you to do or are willing to sign off. Being in the medical professional, as a doctor, pharmacist, a nurse, or being an engineer - those are the only professions allowed! Kamaru Usman, athlete
Kamaru Usman is a Nigerian-American mixed martial artist who competes in the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and is the current UFC Welterweight Champion.
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I had originally wanted to be a lawyer. Even when I went to college and majored in engineering, I still thought I'd get a law degree. Then I started taking electrical engineering classes where I saw some of the innovation happening around computers and solid-state technology in the mid '80s. Kimberly Bryant, scientist
Kimberly Bryant is an African American electrical engineer and founder of Black Girls Code, a non-profit organization that aims to increase the number of women of color in the technology industry.
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As early as I can remember, I wanted to be a snowplow driver. When you grow up in the Rocky Mountains, like I did, you see the snow drifts piled up six feet high, and you're two feet, so it's impressive. Kip Thorne, physicist
Kip Thorne is a renowned American theoretical physicist known for his contributions to gravitational physics and astrophysics.
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I do not enjoy being away from Richmond, my friends of a lifetime, and my home... I do not enjoy working 6 days a week and almost every night at a time when I had planned to be tapering off. There are compensations which appeal to any lawyer who is proud of his profession. The Supreme Court is an awesome place. Lewis F. Powell, Jr., judge
Judge Lewis F. Powell, Jr. was an American lawyer and jurist who served as an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States from 1972 to 1987.
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I started to do theater when I was a little boy at school, and then, I think because my father was a documentary filmmaker and worked for German television, I was of course fascinated by what he did. Daniel Bruhl, actor
Daniel Bruhl is a German-Spanish actor known for his roles in films such as "Good Bye Lenin!", "Inglourious Basterds", and "Rush".
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A lot of people I went to college with felt like they wanted to pursue theater exclusively, so I don't think that I really was in competition with people that I went to school with. Gillian Jacobs, actress
Gillian Jacobs is an American actress known for her roles in the TV shows Community and Love.
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Today, if I could get a job, with face tattoos, being a professor, I would do that. I don't know what university would hire me, but that's my passion. Al Jourgensen, musician
Al Jourgensen is an American musician and producer, best known as the founder and frontman of the industrial metal band Ministry.
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My father was a government officer and for him, the ultimate dream was to see me become an IAS officer. Badshah, musician
Badshah is an Indian rapper, singer, and songwriter known for his work in the Bollywood music industry.
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I have to tell you that June Cleaver had a job in 'The New Leave It to Beaver.' She did. Sure, she was a council woman. She went to work. She wasn't a sit-at-home grandma. She went out, got a job. Barbara Billingsley, actress
Barbara Billingsley was an American actress best known for her role as June Cleaver in the television series "Leave It to Beaver."
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I had a very hard time accepting myself as a character actress because I wanted to be glamorous and a leading lady like everybody else. I looked in the mirror and thought I looked pretty good, but casting didn't ever see me that way. Beth Grant, actress
Beth Grant is an American actress known for her roles in various films and television shows.
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My dad is from Panama; he came to the U.S. in 1971. He came to study chemical engineering at the University of Delaware. He thought he would go back, and then he met my mom here. I was born and mostly raised in Delaware. Cristina Henriquez, author
Cristina Henriquez is a contemporary American author known for her novels and short stories that explore themes of immigration, identity, and family.
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I was real into theater, and then I tried soccer, acting and ballet. Both my parents didn't want a child-star model, so I didn't get into modeling until I was 14. Emily Ratajkowski, model
Emily Ratajkowski is a model and actress known for her appearances in music videos and films, as well as her social media presence.
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Modeling is always something I've really admired because I've seen my mum and sister do it. Georgia May Jagger, model
Georgia May Jagger is a British model and actress, known for her work with major fashion brands and her famous parents, Mick Jagger and Jerry Hall.
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I originally studied graphic design and video production. I had wanted to be a programmer - I loved development and coding - but it turned out that I really enjoyed doing the frontend more than backend development. iJustine, celebrity
iJustine is a popular American YouTuber, content creator, and actress known for her technology and gaming-related videos.
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Did you ever hear of a kid playing accountant - even if they wanted to be one? Jackie Mason, comedian
Jackie Mason is a Jewish-American comedian and actor known for his observational humor and political satire.
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I didn't want to go to school, because I wanted to be an artist, and they were never going to teach me art. None of my family had ever done that kind of stuff either. Kali Uchis, musician
Kali Uchis is a Colombian-American singer, songwriter, and producer known for her unique blend of R&B, soul, and pop music.
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I was in school studying International Studies and Sociology. I was really into what was going on in school. I was affected by the ideas and engaged as a student, but not disciplined or motivated enough to do the work. That was a fear of mine for a while, that nothing was motivating. Kelela, musician
Kelela is an American singer and songwriter known for her unique blend of R&B, electronic, and experimental music.
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I thought I would either be an epidemiologist or a 'Price Is Right' model. Kristen Schaal, actress
Kristen Schaal is an American actress, comedian, and writer known for her roles in TV shows such as "Flight of the Conchords" and "Bob's Burgers."
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I got depressed so many times by my blue-collar life and self-conscious about the fact that I didn't go to college. I was always working super low-end jobs, being the complete opposite of what I wanted to be. Kurt Vile, musician
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But, I swear, they're turning Donna into Annie Hall this season. More ties. More suits. But they're also keeping her really motivated, ya know? Like, wanting to be a rock journalist. Wanting to be the first woman president. Laura Prepon, actress
Laura Prepon is an American actress known for her roles in the television series "That '70s Show" and "Orange Is the New Black."
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I'm very proud to be Canadian, but I would move to New York in a heartbeat. Lexa Doig, actress
Lexa Doig is a Canadian actress known for her roles in popular TV shows such as "Andromeda" and "Arrow".
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I have a sister, in particular, who's 13 years older than me. So growing up and watching her - watching her go to work, especially - was hugely influential to me. As the youngest, with a sibling that's a decade older, I had certain things that I would go to her about instead of my mother. Linda Cardellini, actress
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I would really love to do the score for movies. Pick the music and work with composers. I don't know if I'd be any good at it, but I love music. Lyndsy Fonseca, actress
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For a long time, I thought, 'I'm not a TV presenter,' but now I realise there's no typical route into this business. Rachel Riley, entertainer
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My mother and father definitely encouraged me. People used to tell my mom that I should be in commercials, and then everything kicked off from there, and my first gig was some print work. Raven Goodwin, actress
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As far as I was concerned, the Depression was an ill wind that blew some good. If it hadn't occurred, my parents would have given me my college education. As it was, I had to scrabble for it. Sargent Shriver, politician
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As a child, I wanted to be an astronaut, then a fighter pilot, and then later, as I grew up, I was focused on scoring high marks so that I could do an MBA in marketing. Taapsee Pannu, actress
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When you see your friends going out every Friday night, and earning two hundred quid at the building site, and you're earning twenty-five pounds at Arsenal, and you have to stay in every Thursday, Friday, you know it is hard. Paul Merson,
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My first love and my first instinct are acting. Pankaj Kapur, actor
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When I grew up I always wanted to act. Also, I wanted to be either a lawyer or a doctor. However, when I got to college and realized what those occupations entailed, I changed my mind real quick. Tia Mowry, actress
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I would love to do ten films a year. Rhea Chakraborty, actress
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As a child I wanted to be a professional athlete or lawyer. Walter Dean Myers, writer
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All my life, I call myself wanting to be a lawyer because of Clair Huxtable. But the real dream was to be an actress. Nafessa Williams, actress
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I love writing but not crazy meticulous/prepared enough to be a director. I'd work as a gaffer on something. T. J. Miller, actor
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When I was young, I felt my talent lay in photography, not movies. Karan Kapoor,
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My ex-girlfriend said to me, 'I'm surprised at how normal you are since you were homeschooled.' But I was only homeschooled because I wanted to be an actor. My parents are both teachers. Reece Thompson, actor
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I just want real creative freedom without worrying about, you know, car payments. Sean Penn, actor
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I'm the youngest of four, but my closest sibling is 10 years older. I had a lot of imagination. I was running around playing little games by myself. But I never thought I was going to be an actor. Daniel Breaker, actor
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I decided to study music my last year in high school. Rhiannon Giddens, musician
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I've always thought that I'd make a pretty good police officer, except maybe for the danger part. I have a rare medical condition that makes it difficult for me to risk getting shot, so probably I'd have to be one of those officers who work in 'do not shoot' areas. W. Bruce Cameron, author
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I had my masters in public health, and the goal was to be a doctor, and organic chemistry let me know that that was not going to happen, as did my fear of blood. Yvonne Orji, actress
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There was a brief period of time when I was very young where I thought I wanted to be a veterinarian - largely because I liked cats - but then somebody told me I would have to cut animals open, and that was the end of that. Marie Brennan, author
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All parents want their children to have respectable jobs that pay well. However, my parents are both open-minded and they respect the choice I made. Zhao Wei, actress
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