Graduation Season: Four things I wish I learnt at university
I’m a motion graphics student in London. As I’m three months off graduation, I’ve had a few frustrations with the course. For those of you considering uni, or about to graduate alongside me, here’s the top four things that I haven’t heard taught once in these walls.
1. Time management is the most important thing you will ever learn
This one took (and is taking) far too long to learn. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither was your degree. It takes time to make something awesome, and learning how to find time to do everything is absolutely key to learning how to create efficiently. It’s different for everyone as well, finding what works for you is essential to being successful.
2. Guest lecturers don’t always want to hire you
We had a man and a woman visit our uni from Sky Media last week to have a look at our work. Beforehand, there was talk of potential jobs with them. As I walked into the room mid-session (I’d been at a video shoot) I could feel the atmosphere of competitiveness and awkwardness in the room. 15 of my friends, all doing their best to be over-polite, laughing at the smallest of jokes and trying to pitch their work, hoping that the ’big guns’ will like them enough to hire them.
There was an amazing turning point though, after they finished seeing everyone’s work. The man stood up and said ‘there are places within Sky for each and every one of you, and if I had the openings I could offer each of you a job.’ What most didn’t understand was that within the class, everyone was different, so there’s no need in trying to put yourself ‘above’ someone else in your class. Each has their own strengths.
3. Visit other courses lectures… if you have time
Most of the time they don’t even realise you’re out of place as long as you just stay quiet about things you don’t know about. Learning about other disciplines (especially in the creative world) is really useful. If your uni is anything like mine, they have all of the timetables online for everyone to see, so you can even pick and choose what you’d like to learn about. Just don’t forget what you actually came to uni to study.
4. Learning how to use software is actually kinda important
My uni loves concepts. And while concept is king, you need the tools to be able to create it. There is a school of thought that you can just learn the software in a couple of months. The reality is that your first job will probably not require you to come up with a concept - it will be handed to you and your job will be to make it happen. By all means be creative, but if the end product isn’t up to scratch, it won’t cut it for the client.
- Image credit: WELD