Thursday, 12 March 2009

Life Changing or Career Building?

Picture yourself as an Art Director. You’ve been given a major new game title to work on and you’re trawling through hundreds of applicants trying to build you’re perfect team.
You pause.
Do you judge them by their art or their qualifications? Is a degree in Game Art more desirable than a portfolio?

Well for my sake I hope they consider both.

University is a stepping stone, a bridge between our compulsory education and a hard working life. The majority of people go to university for it’s career prospects. After all, we are constantly promised and tempted with the prospects of a good life and a well paid job if we sit tight and behave through school, if we pour thousands of pounds into the governments pockets to achieve a degree that no longer carries the pride and recognition they once did.

From a sociological view, education and university aren’t just about focusing on a career. They help us build key life skills such s interaction and communication. Going to university is the branch beyond the nest, a chance to ruffle our feathers, puff out our chests before leaping into the world beyond. Outside lecture hours we learn how to look after ourselves, how to cook and clean and manage finances, how to balance a social life with a working one.
No longer do we clutch our laundry staring daunted at the strange contraption in front of us, wondering how our mothers’ manage it. No longer do we open the cupboards and fridge and find them magically restocked by our loving fathers.

Now I’m an odd case. I came to university because I enjoy having an education. I enjoy learning new things and expanding my knowledge. So what if I never use the Pythagoras theorem, given the choice I would probably have wanted to learn it anyways. But in saying all that, I was a lucky one. Never in my compulsory education have I been forced down a path I didn’t want to go down. I was encouraged to do well in all my subjects and when I decided to pursue an artistic career I was supported by both teachers and parents.

So came round the end of my college years and I was faced with the choice of staying home or venturing off to university. It had never been an option for me not to go to university, both my parents went and I’d been brought up listening to their tales. I wanted to go to university because it would be the next stage of my life. I wanted the lifestyle and individuality, I wanted the knowledge and skills, but most of all I wanted a specified career.

I’ve always been under the assumption that going to university would get me further in life, I had the grades and the attitude and I wanted to push myself further.

So here I am.

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