Registering for classes as a graduate student has been very different from any registration process I’ve experienced. While, as an undergrad, I mostly trusted my advisor to know what I needed and I would keep a list of classes to make sure he and I were on track, this experience is so much more interactive (if that’s possible). Over the past week, I’ve been working to enroll in courses for the interdisciplinary study portion of my MFA, and through the process, I have spoken with a number of professors and advisors in Anthropology at UNT as well as in the College of Visual Arts and Design.
I’m pleased to say that everyone has been more helpful than I imagined.
And this seems indicative of the stories I hear of (good) postgraduate education. The student is the consumer: it’s their responsibility to look ahead, ask questions, and explore options. But this only works if those who are asked are willing to answer and to take time with a student to help them explore those questions in finding answers or, at least, potential answers. I’m a guy who wants to respect others’ time so I’m less likely to ask a ton of questions. But through this process, it’s been necessary and those whom I have asked have taken the time (thankfully!).
It reminds me that those who love what they do can do two things well:
- They can sniff out who is serious and who is just wasting their time.
- They are excited to take the time with those who are serious and will genuinely help in their fact-finding.
So, as a student or as a professional designer (or Creative) who has peers and Creative Directors, ask questions. But by gosh, you’d better be sincere. If you are, expect to get real answers that can make a difference in your decision-making from those who have been there and actually care about your success.