This summer, since graduation, I had been worrying about what’s next in my life. ”Where will I live?” ”This economy sucks, what will I do for money?” “Oh God, I’m going to have to move back in with my parents.”
Luckily I managed to get an internship with the University of Michigan College of Engineering for the summer. It was nice to slide back into the intern grind; little responsibility, make a little money, go home and no homework. I got to tackle some bigger projects with no hard deadline, the kind of work I wish I got paid to do for the rest of my career. But alas, such jobs are far in-between and often much to fleeting.
With something like a month left in my internship I took to half-assedly searching for some jobs, and sending out resumes. I wasn’t too worried about finding a steady job, as I had enough savings on hand from the summer to supplement living costs while trying my hand at the freelance design gig. And with the freedoms of doing the freelance thing I had planned to spend my free time creating the iPhone apps I’ve been trying to find time to code to further supplement my income.
Luckily I got a call one day at my internship to schedule a time for an interview for one of the positions I applied for. It totally made my day; “Hell yes, my resume was enough not to be thrown in the garbage!” After buying some interview clothes seeing as all my clothes were already in storage for my move, I was ready to rock my interview that Friday.
At this point I should note that I’ve maybe had two interviews in my life, all for internships and somewhat relaxed and casual. I had no idea what real interviews were like.
The short and the long of it is that I was somewhat nervous, fumbled with a few HR-esque questions, but in the end I got a second interview, and ultimately, the job. I beat out a few folks that had much much more coding experience than I, but my design background combined with my coding knowledge is what I think sealed the deal.
Now, my title is now Senior Web Designer and I work for the University of Michigan Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning. Coincidentally I now work in the other half of the building I just spent three years getting my BFA in. I’m back, except now I’m getting paid to spend time and do work here instead of paying tuition to spend time and do work here; a change I can get used to.
Work definitely is keeping me busy; I’ve got tons of little changes to make every day because of the switchover to the new school year, and I’ve got a few big, longer term projects in the pipeline. As tedious as it can be, it’s still fun and it’s nice to go not have to spend my nights in the studio as well as to go home and not have any homework for a change.
In related musings, the concept of being a local in Ann Arbor, and not a just student anymore is a particularly interesting feeling.