4 years of college. 4 years of school that, if you asked me ten years ago, I would've said I wasn't going to do.
School has always been a love/hate relationship for me. I get to meet fantastic people, as well as people I wish to never see again. I take courses that influence my very way of life, and I take classes that any amount of time spent in them is too much. I tackle projects that I put my whole essence into and then have the very core of said project ripped to shreds.
College was no different.
For those who don't know, I was accepted into the prestigious art college SCAD- Savannah College for Art and Design (now know as SCAD- College for Creative Careers). When I was accepted, it felt like the happiest day of my life. When my parents and I found that we could no longer afford the very expensive school, after just one year, I was devastated. But I was able to pick myself up and continue with my life. I enrolled at the local community college and asked myself 'What next?' I didn't truly figure it out until my advisor sat me down. He asked me the age old question-
"What do you want to do for the rest of your life?"
I figured out a while back (Christmas 2007 in fact) that I wanted to do something with Design, so I simply replied
"I want to be a Designer."
He smirked slightly and leaned closer to me.
"Yes, but what kind of designer?"
At this point in my education, I had done a few different types of design but none were lower in interest to me. So I shrugged and said
'Any kind. I like advertising but that's not the full extent of my abilities Art direction maybe but not for a long time. So anything and everything I can learn to make me more apt for getting a job would be great."
The smirk returned and he looked me dead in the eye.
"Then you're in the right place."
So instead of going into yet another school, I stayed where I was. I buckled down more and did my classes to the best I could. Some went fantastically, some went south, quick. But finally, about a month ago, after busting my butt, getting every done that I needed to, I figured out that I was very close to getting my diploma. It was a bit scary at times, but it was worth it.
So... I now have an education and a diploma (and a decent portfolio if I say so myself)... Now what?
I'm sure that's a question every graduate who didn't get employed before graduation is asking themselves. But Creatives have a different path to follow post graduation - who will hire me in my job field with my portfolio?
I've done the build-up, three internships and freelancing (along with some pro-bono work that will continue through the summer) but I'd prefer a solid, stable position. But to get that is going to take a lot of work and effort. I hope that this diploma and portfolio will mean something to someone. And that I'll fill a position that a company wants me for.
I haven't found it as I write this post, but there are a couple prospects I have my eye on.
For now, I'm gradu-ma-cated and it feels good to earn that honor. That chapter has come to a close. Time for the next one to start and boy, am I scared, excited, nervous, ready all at the same time.
Bring it on.