November 09, 2012

Bite Back! - The Post Grad Phase

I naively thought it wasn’t going to happen to me. My friends that have graduated have warned me: Prepare for the depressing months after your graduation. And I thought listening to a lot of inspiring TED featured talks from ivy league commencement addresses would be suffice (it helps a bit). For many students, they might begin to do their portfolio – the late bloomers (and I`m in the same boat). Some might get their job offers early since they prepared their portfolio on time during school and just in time to pay their student loans. Some might struggle and have a different scenario. It’s really a waiting game and it can get frustrating and disheartening at times and I try to be positive through this experience. Failing and falling behind has prepared me to be positive through it. A lot of college students deal with this, what I`d like to call the “Post-Grad” phase. 

Since many of my friends in architecture school have moved back home or moved on, myself included, this is a time I wanted to extend my network and wanted to meet people outside of architecture and learn from them. This past few months I have been going to entrepreneurship and leadership and architecture events to meet people and learn from them what success is and open my eyes to a world that is not just architecture – and I have been inspired and motivated. I do plan to talk about these events in future posts.

This is not rant, but for me to blog about this experience and make the resolve that I won’t let this get the best of me. This entry is to remind myself to stay hopeful and strong and to not be a victim to circumstances. I failed my studio a few years ago in architecture school...and I guess it’s the lessons of that experience that keep me going today biting back. What keeps me going on in this phase, which may work for some of you readers is the “Triple P” which is Proactivity, Persistence, and Patience.

Stay Proactive (and not reactive)– You have to keep busy.
Network, Network, Network!
Attend workshops, lectures, talk to people.
Keep building your portfolio!
Learn and acquire new skills!
Do competitions and join design charettes!
Seek help – professors, career counselors, mentors!

Stay Persistent– There will be moments of self doubt – you have to prevail and be positive.
Hirings will come unexpectedly.
Rejection should not be taken personal – At the interview it comes down to how well you will easily click and fit in the workplace, firms might not have enough projects.

Stay Patient – If this career is truly what you want to do and are hungry for, you’ll stick through thick and thin.
I think our professors in architecture school were right that this career path might not be the most profitable path to tread in relation to other fields – business and commerce is where it’s at if you’re after profit. Realize that this is a career of passion and I think passion is what is keeps me going in spite of the trying moments of transitional phase - it`s not easy, but the things you`re passionate for are worth fighting for.

Failure taught me patience, persistence, and the need to be proactive. It`s about carefully reflecting on yourself and constantly looking at opportunities to improve and move on. If there is anything that my setbacks in university honed in me is resilience to keep going through these moments, to climb up requires failing and learning from it – ultimately this is a career for those who are passionate about architecture and design. To close this entry, I thought I’d finish up with one more tip – stay hopeful. This isn’t an easy phase for anyone, but be positive and look towards finding what it is you are passionate for and make it your motivating push.

I decided to close off with this graphic designed banner by Stuart Thursby
( ).
This is a quote from the late Canadian Politician Jack Layton.

" My friends, love is better than anger. Hope is better than fear. Optimism is better than despair. So let us be loving, hopeful and optimistic. And we’ll change the world."
- Jack Laton

Failing and Being a Failure - they're actually both different.
Traits Architecture Students must have
Welcome to the best (and worst) years of your life!

1 comment:

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