On Friday during one of my classes, my professors were giving presentations on a week long NYC or LA immersion trips that television, radio and film students go on every January. As they discussed details of the trip, they also gave us a first hand account of what living in one of these cities would look like, as so many of us will be interning in these places after graduation. One of my professors was talking about starting out in Los Angeles. Every day when he went to work, he had $3 he could spend: $1 for bus fare to work, $1 for lunch at Taco Bell, and $1 for bus fare back home. Even though expenses were much cheaper back in his day, the struggle was definitely still real. Talk about a way up call!
After I walk across the stage in May, I will be starting an internship and after hearing this story, I am both afraid and excited, and most of all, definitely sobered. It’s so easy for us as students to imagine the excitement of having that first job and doing what we love, that we begin to build a perception of life after Newhouse that’s pretty misconstrued. For most of us, we’e going to be broke, paying overpriced rent, working long hours for small pay, navigating a new huge city and struggling to make ends meet. We’re going to be away from our parents, away from our friends and away from the safety and comfort of life as we know it now.
It wasn’t until I heard this story that I actually sat down and thought about the harsh possibilities I would be facing. After doing it, I remembered why I choose not to think about these things right now. But, as much as we don’t want to think about it, it is so important for us as students to prepare ourselves for the real world, and for a lot of us that means coming to terms with what things may really look like. Of course this sounds depressing and discouraging, but it is definitely necessary for success and following our dreams. It is important that we understand that things may get hard, we may have to struggle and we will miss our moms, but we have to remember to keep striving, failing forward and showing up. It will all be worth it in the end!
Remember, you don’t have to be average you can be extraordinary. You don’t have to be rock, you can be a diamond.