Monday, November 22, 2010

Peer Pressured

My friend, James, kept trying to get me to go back to school when I complained about my job. I dismissed it. My other friend, Mike, agreed with James, but didn't do much to convince me. When James said school, I kept picturing re-living my undergrad days and it just didn't interest me.

Then another friend, Andy, says I should go back and get my master's degree for photography. Huh. Masters. Hadn't crossed my mind. He continues and says with an MFA I could also teach. Huh. Interesting. I could start applying and looking into schools and if I don't see anything I like or don't get in, there is no real loss. It doesn't cost anything to apply. Huh. All valid points. There are a ton of online programs so I'm not limited to Seattle if there aren't any good programs here. His wife, Theresa, gets on the phone and hits all this same points and tell me about her masters that she just started working on through an online program. It all sounds great. Then the two of them start sending me "Do it! Do it!" texts. They both add all this super supportive gushy stuff too. Evily awesome friends that they are.

The next day at work someone asks me how it is going and I say, "I'm being peer pressured into get a master's degree." To which they respond by just shaking their head and walking away. I'm sure that was not how that sentence usually ends. I threw it out there to a few other people. Friends and co-workers all agreed that it sounded like a solid plan. Not a single nay sayer among them which is unusual, but 5 out of 5 dentists agree that this was the way to go. (Referencing the gum commercials and not actual dentists, in case you were confused.)

I looked into a bunch of programs and learned that there are two kinds of MFA Photography programs. One is a visual arts/studio arts MFA with a concentration in Photography and the other is a photography MFA that you can concentrate in a specific type of photography. I think you can easily guess which one sounded more appealing.

I narrowed my focus and one school kept popping up as being the top choice. Funny enough. It also happens to be the very same school that Theresa is attending. It seems to be written in the stars. It reminds me a lot of where I did my undergrad and one giant plus is they don't require the GRE I did my undergrad at Columbia College in Chicago and they didn't require the ACT or SAT. Bless art schools for realizing we suck at math.

I filled out the online application and sent it off. I got some promotional materials in the mail a few days later. The day before I quit my job (see previous post for that story if you missed it), I got a call from the school. Abigail from admissions said that they were very interested in getting me started in application process. She answered a bunch of my random questions about the school, the program and financial aid. An hour after the conversation I got an email with all the things I needed to do.

The next post will be all about the school and the program.

**Spoiler** It's the Academy of Art University in San Fransisco (But I'll be doing the online program here in Seattle).

(Side note - I put links to all the tests and initials I referenced since I have some international friends who might not know what I am talking about.)

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