What year did you graduate VHS?
I graduated Year 12 in 2010.
Where are you working now and in what role?
I'm currently working as a Graphic Designer at two local companies; John Hills Signs and Burnt Phoenix Design & Advertising.
What do you love about your job?
I love that every day is different, and every client's requirements are different. One day I could be designing a graphic wrap for a vehicle, and the next day we could have a meeting with a new client in a different state about their new website. I also love that my job is to make things look good, and make things function seamlessly. Whether it's a business's brand and logo, or an entire shopfront signage system. During my studies I travelled to Europe for two months, and that really opened my eyes to the design world and extensive possibilities that I could pursue in Graphic Design.
Did anyone at VHS inspire you to follow your chosen career path?
I was encouraged by so many supportive teachers and staff at VHS. I actually found that I loved the idea of graphic design when we had a career day in year 11, which introduced me to the college I eventually studied at in 2011/12. Two teachers that were always a huge influence in helping me find my way and supporting my growth over those formative teenage years were the wonderful Mrs Shana Corbett and the late, beautiful Ms Hailey Barker. Mrs Corbett was one of the teachers that provided me, and so many of my peers with endless opportunities to improve our learning from very early on at high school. She encouraged my love of geography, and although that wasn't the direction I went in career-wise, I was able to see the benefits in taking on a career that can take me all over the world. Ms. Barker was a definite influence when it came to me pursuing my passions in a creative space and all the while showing me that good things would come to those that work hard. Hailey encouraged me to take any opportunity that presented itself, with confidence and that lead me to landing the job and position I'm in 6 years later.
And of course, Mrs Karen Lane as our Year Advisor, was someone that influenced me throughout my 6 years at VHS, supporting our independence as students, young adults, and encouraging me in my studies every step of the way. Along with organising some of the best excursions to get us out of the classroom and into the real world.
Did you have many challenges to get to where you are now?
As a student, trying to figure out what I wanted to do 'when I grew up' was a huge pressure that I put on myself. I didn't have it all figured out, even after I started studying design. But I knew that my passions lied in creativity and this was something that kept me going. There weren't many employment challenges that I found after finishing my tertiary education, Graphic Design jobs were not abundant in our local area and I applied for hundreds of positions up and down the east coast of NSW in the 8+months following my final year - with no outcomes or interviews. When I was successful in finding a job, this meant moving out of home and taking a position as a junior designer that I wasn't particularly passionate about, but that taught me so much about the industry and got me to where I am today.
Do you have any advice for our current students?
You don't have to have it all figured out right now, find what you're passionate about and if you can, go for it; without putting too many expectations on yourself. The world is changing and we're all just making it up as we go along - have some fun and you may just find a career that you love on the way.