The right job for me?

So, I’ve actually been back on this beautiful campus that I just left earlier this month with a diploma in one hand and my teddybear Aristotle Panda, a goodbye present from my friends, in the other. (Okay, and a car packed to the roof… I really mean it, chock-full of stuff, I spent the car ride holding a plant on my lap and arranging my feet in between a guitar and a box that I’m pretty sure contained about 30 bottles of nailpolish.)

But never mind the tetris-like arrangement of stuff in the car… I wanted to talk about something else. I wanted to talk about coming back to help organize a conference. And by that, I pretty much mean, sending a ton of emails. Event management can be summed up in two words – “many emails”. I don’t want to offend any event managers reading our blog, so here is a disclaimer: It’s not easy. It’s not a lazy-person job. All these emails that you send – you have to make pretty darn sure you don’t delete the important ones, don’t forget to respond to the urgent ones, CC the people who will otherwise be confused and/or upset at being left out of decisions, and of course, you have to keep track of EVERYTHING.

A conference doesn’t just need people attending and people talking. It needs coffee breaks, cold drinks, accommodation, schedules, dinner catering, changed opening hours for the cafeteria, travel cost requests and reimbursements, conference fees, participation confirmations, flight bookings, emergency numbers, bedsheets, towels, soap, a welcome desk, a chair and table for said welcome desk, glasses, water, wine, beer, more coffee (this time for the organizer), and the list goes on and on and on.

Truth be told, I like most of it. I like being a head organizer. I like that this conference is something I created. I like knowing that people will have a vegetarian option at dinner because I requested it, and that they will have Internet vouchers because I thought of them in time, and that they will have a campus map with colourful dots on it that will make their lives so much easier. You know when you go to an event and you feel that you’re not being given sufficient information? Everything might be organized perfectly but you feel lost because nobody told you where to go. I like thinking that this will not happen because I created a guide to put in the welcome package which will tell people how to use the Internet vouchers and where (and when) they can get food.

So don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it’s not fun. But despite the fact that I feel I’m doing a really good job so far, I am also pretty convinced that this is not the right job for me. I’m not planning on pursuing it, anyways, this conference is the last big task of a student job I have held since October. But you know how people tend to tell you if you’re talented in an area, that is probably the work you should pursue?

I disagree. And you know why? Because I’m good at event management, but I’m not passionate about it. And I still believe that there’s that one thing out there that will excite me for the rest of my life. That one thing that will make me want to jump out of bed at some crazy early hour because I can’t wait to go to work. I know it’s in the creative direction, and I have a suspicion that it has something to do with branding, brand identity creation, brand design – both the strategic and the graphic/creative part of that field. I wrote my Bachelor’s thesis on this subject and I will start an internship in this field soon, so we’ll see if my suspicion was right. In the meantime, dear readers, I see a lot more post-graduation-confusion coming my way, and therefore your way… it’s good to know that our stories seem to be entertaining you guys, and by the way, can we say a big THANK YOU to our now over 20 followers… we know it’s a tiny number in the blogosphere, but it is hugely exciting to us that there are twenty complete strangers who like reading our ramblings. We’re not going anywhere – stay tuned! 🙂

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Hi, I work here.

There’s something really strange about working where you normally study. Suddenly people who you collectively referred to as “admin”, become Nancy from Accounting, Tanja and Bianca from Housing and Hilke from Purchasing. I mean, of course you knew the people from career services and the financial aid department, but when does a student really interact with the people in charge of purchasing? I like purchasing requests, by the way. You put these ridiculously large amounts of office supplies on a list, add up ridiculously high prices and then just give the form to someone else, and miraculously, stuff gets delivered and paid for. I’ve been considering smuggling in a few extra items I might need for myself… no, just kidding, of course.

My team is great. I mean, seriously amazing. Within three weeks they went from random faces to people I laugh and joke with. My boss invited me to a painting class the other day and my office mate complains whenever I am NOT playing music on my computer. He also brings me coffee, even though he likes to tell other people that it’s the other way around. All in all, I almost feel like I’ve been part of the team for a really long time, even though I’m an intern and even though I haven’t worked there for more than a few weeks. I’ll be a bit sad to leave in five weeks, really, even though that will also mean I’m finally going home.

I don’t really love the fact that campus has become so quiet with the start of semester break, but working eight hours a day is surprisingly tiring and while during the semester I tend to be most active in the evenings, now I generally just watch TV and then go to sleep early. So it’s okay… not perfect, I’d prefer my social life to be more… well… existent. It’s only for two months, though.

Anyways. I have a few more things I wanted to write about… I went to Berlin and Hamburg for work, for college fairs, and that was quite fun… but right now Criminal Intent is on TV and I’m gonna go watch that, drink tea and doze off… early day tomorrow!