DASH Dispatch: In terms of workload and time management, what are the main differences between what you knew about your strand before you started versus now?
Sami Wax: When I was first introduced to graphics in freshmen year, I was under the impression that it was all on the computer and that we were just going to be editing photos and making collages or something like that. Now that I’m in the program, it’s so much more. Graphics is package design, branding, illustration, photography, virtually anything that gets processed through a computer. Between sophomore and junior year the workload definitely escalated, and again as a senior since we have two design classes, there are more things on our plate, and we have a lot more expectations set for us.
DD: What strategies or changes to your routine have helped you manage your workload?
SW: My calendar has become my best friend. It went from being a list of things to do all the way to a full blown color-coded tool for me. It’s the best way for me to organize myself, especially since my computer and phone calendar can sync to each other. I also keep a to-do list in a notebook, just as a back up.
DD: How do you get your work done outside of DASH when you don’t have access to the resources at school (i.e. software, sewing machines, etc.)?
SW: For graphics, it may seem daunting that you have the software in school only, but as I said before, graphics isn’t only editing photos. If you draw something at home and bring it in to scan onto the computer to work with in class, you’re maximizing your time and equipment. There are also some great student deals on the Adobe Suite for around $90, which is a big savings compared with the regular price. Before I got the Adobe Suite I downloaded a free 30-day trial of the whole suite and used those 30 days as much as I could.
DD: In what ways have your classmates, family, or friends become a support system?
SW: We definitely have a great support system in the graphics program because of how much time we spend together and the environment we’re in. The lab setting is really great because you can walk around and see what everyone else is doing while getting feedback on your work. My parents have definitely been supportive of my choice to attend DASH and they help with anything they can, from driving me to Kinko’s all the way to putting up with the light on under my door late at night.
DD: What do you do to balance school work with time for rest, social activities, a job, etc.?
SW: Before DASH, I was a lot more involved with sports and after-school activities. Being here and being in the graphics program has definitely made me cut down. But, that’s not to say DASH or the design programs make you drop everything. A balance is definitely hard to find, but like I said before, a calendar is the best thing for me to have because I can schedule-in when I have family events, projects due, social events, and when I’m babysitting.