February 6th, 2010

sideview, obamame_sideview

Writer's Block: Educated guess

How has your education prepared you for your current or intended career? Do you wish you had taken a different path academically? Would you consider transferring or going back to school?

Very well, actually!

My undergrad education at UMass was pretty much in -everything- with a minor (supposedly a major) in Journalism. I took courses in nearly 20 departments and not just to meet university curriculum diversity requirements. Besides the aforementioned Journalism and a minor in German, I took classes in Anthropology, Drama, Latin, French, Russian, Psychology, Political Science, Sociology, Food Science, English, Fashion, Film, Biology, Linguistics and a couple other areas.

I got a bit of everything, except I guess hard science, math, engineering type stuff... and of course didn't get any Computer Science prep. Although I'm not awfully sure CS would have come in useful at all because to be honest I learned the computer stuff on my own, often on the fly, and on top of that, the work I do now did not exist in any way back when I was in college. I did take two courses at UGA (under the aegis of the Journalism department) in web development, which is what steered me into my career, and away from Journlism (ha ha, UGA J-School!) but that was it.

Having a diverse educational background, wide interests and a liberal arts bent has helped me carve a niche for myself career-wise in a big way. There are many web jockeys who lack skills I have, like writing, journalistic sense for news, sense of aesthetics, etc. Web pros are often either technical (programming, databases, systems) or artistic (design, Flash, video) but rarely both and I'd say rarely also writers. With my skills I'm able to fill a gap and do the work of three people. Which is exhausting but keeps me employed.