Student Voices is a WOA blog feature that presents the experiences and point of views of current arts students around campus. Get to know our creative and passionate students through their “voices” and get a snapshot of life as an arts undergrad. The views and opinions expressed within these student voices posts are solely those of the author.
Honestly, I entered the Arts Work Experience (AWE) Program because I was just looking for a summer job where I could make money (any amount of money—I was willing to take a hit in the payroll department) by writing. In my application to the program, I’d indicated that I was interested in publishing, editing, technical writing…whatever. As long as I could read, write or edit, I’d be happy.
Truthfully, the job postings that I had access to didn’t line up with the work experience that I had in mind. “Communications Intern” just didn’t do it for me. What is that, I thought. Marketing? God forbid.
Finally, it was March, and I still hadn’t applied for any jobs. My boyfriend has a saying: Hungry? Look through fridge. Find nothing? Lower standards. Repeat.
I reluctantly applied this advice to my work search around the time that Amber Nicholson, the lovely Career Development Officer with the Faculty of Arts, contacted me, saying that she thought this job would be a “great fit for my interests”—the job aligned with my skills, if not my ideal scenario. I looked at it more closely. Not bad, but…
The deadline was in two days.
Then add a soul-wracking dilemma: the position was full-time, year-long. I had just enrolled in the perfect schedule for my fourth and final year of studies. To graduate, or not to graduate? That was the question.
I wound up putting together a whirlwind application, with a lot of help from several wonderful people who needn’t have bothered with such last minute hoopla. The advice, from my dad (who received a frantic phone call between classes), was this: Things can change, but if you don’t apply, you definitely won’t have the job. You can always turn it down.
There was one thing that still bothered me, though… I wasn’t exactly qualified. I had to Google what on Earth “Adobe Creative Suite” was (to me, Adobe was a .pdf reader—end of story) prior to my interview. I watched some YouTube videos learning about the basics for programs like InDesign.
When these points came up in the interview, I thought back to the advice I had received from the outgoing intern: Be open to learning. I was honest: I knew a few of the basics, but I was by no means well-versed in design, let alone design software.
As it turns out, I got the job, and half of the classes that I was interested in were cancelled.
Story highlights (otherwise known as the TL;DR version)
- There is a lot of room for personal growth even in jobs you don’t initially consider.
- If you apply for a job, you reserve the option to accept but also to reject the offer.
- There is always room to learn if you don’t exactly match certain qualifications.