During my junior year I had what I would call a mid-college crisis. I faced the reality that I definitely don’t have everything figured out when it comes to the overall life plan. Throughout my college experience I struggled with comparing myself to those around me when it comes to measuring up college careers and goals. My classes have challenged me and I have learned that I enjoy working in a collaborative and creative environment. But sometimes I find myself worrying that I haven’t chosen a career path that some would classify as “sensible.” Compared to some of my friends who have plans for law school, nursing school and medical school, I would find myself spiraling into thoughts that my interests and plan aren’t enough.
Luckily, one class allowed me to see my own potential path to success and happiness.
During the winter and spring quarters of my junior year, I took the capstone sequence of my major: narrative film. This entailed endless hours in and out of the classroom spent with my classmates writing, rewriting, planning and finally getting on set of our short narrative film. As the producer, I had the role of keeping everything organized and on schedule. However, being a film student and only having a crew of four people, we all worked together to help each other tackle our roles and create the best film we could make. Together we pushed through the early call times and seemingly endless nights of editing and ended up having a lot of fun doing it.
This project also allowed me to experience trial and error as we went through the creative process of trying different things and seeing if they worked or not. The failures only brought us closer to our end product. And this was a really important thing to learn; what didn’t work only brought us closer to what we wanted our end goal to be. And having an end product to show my friends and family brought me a feeling of accomplishment that I had not felt from any other class I have taken so far in my college career.
This class allowed me to realize that everyone’s interests and career goals are enough. Not everyone is going to be a neurosurgeon or engineer and that’s okay. Just like everyone isn’t going to be a filmmaker, writer or photographer. Success in my eyes is doing something with your life that makes you happy and that is what I intend to do. Even if I haven’t quite figure out what that is.
Now, weeks away from beginning my senior year and reflecting on my college career, I am grateful for all of the different experiences and opportunities that have led me both to success and failure. But when I consider my expectations going into freshman year for my college experience, I realize that I haven’t quite gotten the clarity or certainty I thought I would have by now about my future. I don’t have everything figured out as I thought I would. But I’m now realizing that’s okay too. No one really has everything figured out even if they do have a next step planned. My goal for success during my senior year is to take a breath, make more wonderful memories, and continue chasing things that spark my interest which challenges me and most importantly, make me happy.