Archive for the ‘My Life’ Category
1. Unhappy with current expected graduation date.
My old advisor quit. When I went to meet with my new advisor for the first time, we started out by making a graduation plan together so that we could be on the same page. Unfortunately, the timeline that she made for me had me graduating at the end of 2014. This is not the impression I’d gotten from my old advisor. I had been expecting late 2012 or early 2013 prior to the meeting.
I’ve been in touch with my new advisor, and we’ve been able to wrangle it down to late 2013. I’d have a heavier load, but it would be achievable. Graduating in 2013 is a lot better, but still, the can of worms has been opened.
2. More specialization.
I was originally a Digital Arts & Communications major, which was great. When it was announced that my major was being merged with the much larger Computer Arts department to create Web Design & New Media, I was disappointed because it seemed like a lot of the stuff that I wanted to avoid (3D animation, video editing, audio design, etc) was now being shoehorned into my college experience.
The new director personally assured me that Web Design & New Media would still allow me to specialize in what I wanted later on in the degree. Maybe that’s still to come, but I’m now midway through my third year of college and I think that I could get more of the specialization I want at another school.
3. Live in different cities before I settle down.
Before I went to college, I actually had a plan of doing my first half at AAU here in San Francisco and my second half at SVA over in New York City. The idea was that since I loved both cities, I wanted to “try them both on” before I graduate from college so that I could better know where I wanted to live. Since then, the plan changed because it turned out that SVA didn’t have an undergraduate program I wanted after all (ironically, what they’ve got sounds similar to what I’ve ended up in here at AAU), but if I did transfer somewhere, then my old hope of experiencing new places would be revived.
4. More social possibility.
AAU doesn’t have a lot of clubs, doesn’t have any athletic programs of interest to me, and doesn’t really have a lot of events designed to help students meet each other. In the years I’ve been here, I haven’t really made a lot of new friends in my classes either, at least not compared to other people, or more importantly, compared to how many I’d like to have. For this aspect of the college experience, it’s great that others have done well here at AAU, but maybe I need to go elsewhere to thrive.
5. Moving time.
There’s a very good chance that I’ll be moving out of this apartment soon anyway, so the timing is good. Pretty simple.
1. New graduation date is acceptable, and San Francisco is great.
When I was able to get my expected graduation date back down to 2013 here at AAU, that was very, very good. I love living in San Francisco, and yet only recently felt like I’ve got an idea of how much fun I can have here. It makes sense that it takes a while before you know your city well enough to get the most out of it, and I’m just getting there now!
2. My academic performance has been outstanding here at AAU.
I’ve been doing very well here at AAU. I have a GPA of 3.75 (all A’s except for two B’s so far, woo!), I’m on the President’s List, and there are a lot of great teachers here who remember me and will definitely write glowing letters of recommendation when/if I try to get into grad program later on. Would I academically kick ass at those liberal arts schools the same way I have here? I’m used to having giant projects all the time, and that’s hard stuff, but I know that the type of work I’d get would be different if I was at a liberal arts school instead of an art school. Different and unknown is scary.
3. I’d miss my biological family.
They were a factor in my deciding to come here, and I want to see more of them. We’ve gotten really close, but my father has spent the majority of my time here unable to do stuff because he was switching jobs and is now looking at new homes. It would be really sad for me if I left just when he was ready to start regularly spending time together again. Also, I’ve been spending a lot of time with my Aunt Toby, and she’s a ton of fun, so it would also be really sad to not get to see her often. Uggh. Just thinking about them makes me want to come up with more rationalizations for staying.
4. Moving is daunting.
When I moved out of the dorms, I got to experience how big of an operation that really can be. As smooth as it was, it was still very unpleasant. And then when I moved into this apartment, my roommate wasn’t around to help for the first few weeks, so I also have the memory of what it’s like to move in to a new place pretty fresh in my mind. If I’m going to be leaving this apartment regardless of transfer though, then I suppose it’s not terribly relevant, but moving within the same city and moving across the country to a brand new place are pretty different.
I want to be a user experience designer, which is a pretty specialized focus. Here are links to the programs around the country I’m most interested in:
Carnegie Mellon University
There are other schools on my list to check out, but right now, those are my favorites. Of these, I’m leaning most toward the Interaction Design at UW and Communication Design at CMU. UCLA gets some special points though because my mother specifically asked me to look at them, and also I remembered that I have a close friend from back home who is thinking of moving to Los Angeles in the near future.
So in closure, let’s say that I’m 60% leaning toward transferring to a new school. It could go either way, but it’s a very real possibility.
Had another great summer working up at Montecito Sequoia. Started going out with a cute, friendly girl from New Zealand, raised my personal best score on the archery range to 317 (6 flights of 6 arrows at 40 yards), and got lots of really positive feedback from the guests. Hopefully I’ll have some videos of skits to show.
Time for school again now. AAU messed with my schedule a bit right before the start of classes, so here’s the final result. They’re all 3 credit courses, which is normal at my school.
Developmental Psychology, 8:30 am–12:00 pm
Book Arts 1, 3:30 pm–9:50 pm
Designing Careers, 12:00 pm–2:50 pm
Digital Imaging 2, 12:00 pm–2:50 pm
Hours after my last class of the semester got out in San Francisco, I was stepping off the plane in Portland. My longtime friend and roommate, Mason, is from nearby Tigard, which is basically Portland but pretends it isn’t.
I had a blast running all over the “City of Roses” with Mason. I got to meet some of his friends, who I really think would fit in perfectly with my own crew back home and look forward to seeing again. Also, his family was about as gracious as hosts get.
- Flew into Portland
- Met Mason’s family and his friends Donovan and Marcus
- Hearty spaghetti dinner and birthday cake (belated celebration for Mason’s 21st)
- Bannigan’s Pie House
- Mason’s dad made breakfast
- Walked around Washington Square Mall
- A gallery/toys/lol place I wish I could remember the name of
- Theo’s Sandwiches
- A comic book shop I also can’t remember the name of
- Saw MacGruber near Pioneer Courthouse
- Mason’s dad made steak dinner
- Met up with my old pal Zach at Rocco’s Pizza
- Powell’s Bookstore
- Deschutes Brewery, then said bye to Zach
- Met up with Marcus and headed to Saborro’s Sushi
- Tea Chai Te
- Joined by another guy named Jon on the way to Ground Kontrol Arcade Bar
- Elmer’s Diner
- Saturday Market
- Voodoo Donuts
- Widmer Brewery
- Max’s Brew Pub
- Ordered from Pizza Caboose
- Hung out with Donovan and Marcus
- Another amazing breakfast made by Mason’s dad
- Sushi Hana
- House of Reptiles
- Bounty Hunter Saloon
- Bannigan’s Pie House again
- Flew back to San Francisco
Portland was fantastic. It’s definitely on the list of places I can see myself living, and I can’t wait to go back again.
A few months ago, I started thinking about all the things I got from other people. I noticed things like how I have different laughs that come from different people. When I started making the list though, it turned into mostly what I’ve learned from other people.
Without further delay, here are some of the lessons other people have taught me and other things I picked up from them.
I’m done with another semester at AAU, and holy smokes does it feel good. I flew home yesterday right after my last class. Every few hours, “I’m done” pops into my head and I smile.
So here’s a selfish list of random things I want to do, preferably with wonderful friends just like you.
- Grill some steaks and/or have a Star Wars marathon.
- Go ice skating in the temporary rink at the Hotel del Coronado.
- Have a lazy picnic on a sailboat some afternoon, preferably with a piña colada and a bucket of chicken wings in addition to whatever else we decide to bring. (Don’t judge me, Mason. I still want more wings.)
- Watch every remaining episode of Kitchen Nightmares.
- See Sherlock Holmes.
- See Avatar.
- See Princess and the Frog.
- Go to Knott’s Berry Farm.
- Find a new coat.
- Go to a Charger’s game.
- Convince my dad to make his unbelievable rack of lamb one night.
- Get down to Clayton’s for chocolate chip pancakes, and maybe some corned beef hash too.
- Eat a bowl of Applejacks, just because it’s been like ten years since I’ve had a bowl and I was reminded of them recently.
- Make cookies— from scratch for once. With lots of chocolate. And spices.
- Spend a sunny day finding out how many cherry pits fit in my mouth.
Bonus: Shave my beard so I can see what I look like without one for the first time in years.
Also, I’ll post up the final versions of all the stuff I made for my design classes plus the video presentation I made for my art history class. But that can wait. Stuff from my narrative storytelling class is already up anyway.
Update: I uploaded the work to my Deviant Art. They wouldn’t take my video files though, so you can watch them here. Watch out, they play kinda fast. It feels that way especially because of chaotic camera movements, but hey, not bad for having used that particular program for only two weeks, right? I’m happy with all of them.