Celebrities are revealing their humbling first jobs to show there's hope for all of us.

Nobody starts at the top. Unless, of course, they come from a wealthy and connected family, and they get to bypass all the life lessons on the road to success.

Nearly everyone else starts off somewhere near the bottom.


There are a lot of factors that determine how successful one will become. Research published in the Journal of Organizational Behavior found the biggest predictor of success is emotional intelligence. Interpersonal competence, self-awareness, and social awareness are the best predictors of long-term success.

People have been sharing how they’ve progressed in their careers on Twitter under #firstsevenjobs. A group of highly-successful celebrities chimed in, showing how they started in low-paying jobs such as a dishwasher or car-detailer before, ultimately, becoming rich and famous.

Before he knew the world was hungry for people rapping about states’ rights and the Compromise of 1790, “Hamilton” creator, Lin-Manuel Miranda, operated a slushie machine.

To think, there are people out there who can say they bought a futon off Stephen Colbert.

There’s no way when Buzz Aldrin was washing dishes he thought he’d make it to the moon.

Before becoming the host of CNN’s “United Shades of America,” W. Kamu Bell was dishing out scoops of Cherry Garcia at Ben and Jerry’s.

Before Monica Lewinsky became a Women’s rights advocate, she was once an unpaid intern at the White House in the ‘90s.

Oscar-winning actress Mira Sorvino (“The Mighty Aphrodite”) learned how to speak Chinese and bartend before becoming famous.

“House of Cards” creator Beau Willimon was an ace at wiping down your dash with Armor All before anyone knew what binge-watching meant.

Photo by Louis Hansel on Unsplash
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This story was originally shared on Capital One.

Inside the walls of her kitchen at her childhood home in Guatemala, Evelyn Klohr, the founder of a Washington, D.C.-area bakery called Kakeshionista, was taught a lesson that remains central to her business operations today.

"Baking cakes gave me the confidence to believe in my own brand and now I put my heart into giving my customers something they'll enjoy eating," Klohr said.

While driven to launch her own baking business, pursuing a dream in the culinary arts was economically challenging for Klohr. In the United States, culinary schools can open doors to future careers, but the cost of entry can be upwards of $36,000 a year.

Through a friend, Klohr learned about La Cocina VA, a nonprofit dedicated to providing job training and entrepreneurship development services at a training facility in the Washington, D.C-area.

La Cocina VA's, which translates to "the kitchen" in Spanish, offers its Bilingual Culinary Training program to prepare low-and moderate-income individuals from diverse backgrounds to launch careers in the food industry.

That program gave Klohr the ability to fully immerse herself in the baking industry within a professional kitchen facility and receive training in an array of subjects including culinary skills, food safety, career development and English language classes.

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This article originally appeared on 11.21.16


Photographer Katie Joy Crawford had been battling anxiety for 10 years when she decided to face it straight on by turning the camera lens on herself.

In 2015, Upworthy shared Crawford's self-portraits and our readers responded with tons of empathy. One person said, "What a wonderful way to express what words cannot." Another reader added, "I think she hit the nail right on the head. It's like a constant battle with yourself. I often feel my emotions battling each other."

So we wanted to go back and talk to the photographer directly about this soul-baring project.

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When a pet is admitted to a shelter it can be a traumatizing experience. Many are afraid of their new surroundings and are far from comfortable showing off their unique personalities. The problem is that's when many of them have their photos taken to appear in online searches.

Chewy, the pet retailer who has dedicated themselves to supporting shelters and rescues throughout the country, recognized the important work of a couple in Tampa, FL who have been taking professional photos of shelter pets to help get them adopted.

"If it's a photo of a scared animal, most people, subconsciously or even consciously, are going to skip over it," pet photographer Adam Goldberg says. "They can't visualize that dog in their home."

Adam realized the importance of quality shelter photos while working as a social media specialist for the Humane Society of Broward County in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

"The photos were taken top-down so you couldn't see the size of the pet, and the flash would create these red eyes," he recalls. "Sometimes [volunteers] would shoot the photos through the chain-link fences."

That's why Adam and his wife, Mary, have spent much of their free time over the past five years photographing over 1,200 shelter animals to show off their unique personalities to potential adoptive families. The Goldbergs' wonderful work was recently profiled by Chewy in the video above entitled, "A Day in the Life of a Shelter Pet Photographer."