#PUCCollegeDays18

Earlier this month, we welcomed over 300 students and sponsors to our campus for College Days. If you’ve never heard of College Days, it is PUC’s special visitation event, held three times a year. The next event is scheduled for February 10-12, 2019. Sign up now!

College Days is two action-packed days where you can experience what life at the college is like, and a great way to see if PUC is the right fit for you.

Below are some of our favorite moments from this past College Days. You can also check out the hashtag #PUCCollegeDays18 to see more photos from the event!

Visiting students sign up for academic departments to visit.

PUC’s annual Fall Fest also took place during College Days, where student-run clubs raised money for projects by selling various items.

During one of the College Days meetings, visiting students got to hear from current PUC students about what life is like and ask questions about their experiences at the college.

There was also a faculty panel, during which faculty shared about their departments and why they love teaching at PUC.

A PUC student-led praise band closes the evening with worship.

Roasting marshmallows.

Starting the day with a worship thought.

The highlight of day two was a pizza party and visiting students speed mingling with different departments on campus.

We hope you will join us for our February College Days. Don’t forget to sign up!

Studies in Watercolor: Wendy Liang, Guest Artist

By Becky St. Clair

Wendy Liang is the guest artist at PUC’s Rasmussen Art Gallery in November. In 2018, she has won the California Watercolor Association’s 48th National Exhibition, The Artist’s Magazine’s 35th Annual Art Competition, and Southwest Art Magazine’s Artistic Excellence Competition. In 2017 she received the most meaningful recognition yet for her artwork: when she won the competition of Splash 19, The Illusion of Light.

Please join us for Wendy’s opening reception, including an artist talk, on Saturday, Nov. 10, from 7-9 p.m. Her show will remain in the Rasmussen Art Gallery through December 9 (note that the RAG is closed for Thanksgiving Break, Nov. 16-25).

We caught up with Wendy to get to know her as an artist and a person and enjoyed learning more about her inspiration, her passion, and her process.

When did you first feel that spark of desire to create?

I became interested in art as a child when I first noticed colors of objects would change depending on the type of weather and the different time of the day. I’ve taken lots of college-level art courses and private art lessons over the years.

What do you love most about painting?

I enjoy the solitude and the joy of creating something pleasant for others and myself.

Tell us about what inspires you.

My inspiration comes through interesting lighting, water and its reflections, and scenes that feel dreamlike or somehow ethereally familiar.

Once you get inspiration, how do you begin the creation process?

I start by playing with different compositions until I find the ideal. Then, I make a draft. Finally, and most important, I determine the dominant color and mood of the painting.

Okay, we’ve talked about what influences you; now tell us who inspires you.

I’ve been influenced the most by impressionists such as Monet and Degas.

How would you categorize the style of your art?

I usually refer to it as impressionistic realism.

What are some of your typical muses?

I want nothing more than to freeze the moment for eternity whenever I come across a scene that catches my heart, whether it is the first morning rays breaking through the mist or a sunset that turns the sky into a warm color pallet. Any scene that creates otherworldly or mysterious atmosphere remains one of my favorite subjects to paint.

Looking to the future, what kind of goals do you have in your career?

I am a dreamer, and my biggest dream right now is to turn my hobby into a professionI want to teach college-level art eventually. And, perhaps this will surprise you, but I would be a movie director or a writer if I weren’t an artist.

How about when you’re not in the studio? What are some of your hobbies?

When I’m not painting, I enjoy dancing, reading, and cooking for my family.

Resonance: Artist Carla Crawford to Exhibit Work at Rasmussen Art Gallery

By Becky St. Clair

The Rasmussen Art Gallery on the campus of Pacific Union College in Angwin welcomes Carla Crawford as the first visiting artist in the Rasmussen’s 2018-19 season. Crawford holds a double major in art studio and Italian from UC Davis and a teaching degree in art education from San Francisco State University. Her medium of choice being oil paints, visitors to her exhibition in the Rasmussen can expect to enjoy 23 paintings and drawings including portraits, landscapes, interiors, and still lifes.

The community is invited to join Crawford for an opening reception of her show, “Resonance,” at 7 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 13. There will be an artist talk and opportunity to chat with Crawford while enjoying her work.

We had the opportunity to speak with Crawford about her experience as an artist, her inspiration, and her aspirations.

Tell us about your experience with art education.

Well, I completed my undergraduate studies at UC Davis where I studied under the painter Wayne Thiebaud. While I had been painting for years, Dr. Thiebaud introduced me to color theory and composition design for the first time and encouraged me to study abroad through the UC program at the Academy of Art in Bologna, Italy, where I ended up spending two years in exchange, the most formative years of my life. There I was pushed with brutal critiques to work harder than I ever had as a painter.

While the Academy in Bologna is a postmodern-leaning school, in Italy I was surrounded by the rich history of Italian painting, something that completely captivated me. I stayed in Italy after graduating, teaching art and art history, but my love of traditional European painting eventually led me to realize I needed to go back to the States to get the classical training I so wanted as a painter.

Returning home, I moved to New York City to undertake a course of study at the Grand Central Atelier under the direction of Jacob Collins. For four years I spent 8-11 hours a day in front of the figure and the portrait studying drawing, anatomy, and classical painting techniques. I delved into the work. There was and is so much to learn about painting and in the Atelier I was able to immerse myself in rigorous visual training in tradition of mindful observation I so wanted. This is something I continue to explore in my painting practice in the studio today.

Going back even further, when did you first feel the spark of inspiration as an artist?

I have loved drawing and painting since I was little. I have always enjoyed working with my hands, and painting is such a physical and tactile activity. The ability of value, color, and texture to create a three-dimensional illusion on a two-dimensional surface has always been interesting to me.

What are some of your regular artistic inspirations?

I draw my inspiration from the natural world with all of its nuances and variations. As Edouard Manet said, “A painter can say all he wants to with fruits and flowers.” In a culture where we are constantly bombarded with images, I am interested in slowing down and mindfully observing my subject material with all its subtleties until I can really see it. As a painter, my interest is primarily in small scenes of daily intimacy and in the studio I find myself drawn to subjects that capture introspective moments: times of rest, naps, half-eaten food, or the face of a friend absorbed in thought. I work primarily from life which gives me the opportunity to connect in a personal and direct way with my models and subject material.

How does your personal history relate to the art you create?

I always paint subjects I have a connection to and resonate with me on an emotional level. Often this is my family and friends but also objects and places I find meaningful. My work often centers around themes of intimism and memory.

Who are some other artists do you admire, and why?

I am inspired by the work of many great naturalists painters but Vermeer continues to be someone I turn to again and again in the studio to understand light, color, and atmosphere in paint. The emotional connection and the empathy he conveys with his models is also something I deeply respect and aspire to in my own work.

Tell us about an artistic skill you’d like to learn or improve.

Painting is such a complex skill that the painter is never finished studying, the learning is never done, and you never “arrive.” This is one of the reasons why I love it. For me, it is a lifelong pursuit. After years of studying, painting, and teaching I still keep a long list of things I want to understand better and painters with whom I want to study. Currently, I am researching composition design in the studio, something that I believe the painter can devote years of study to.

A Conversation with Fall Revival Speaker Josue Hernandez

By Becky St. Clair

Josue Hernandez is in the middle of his third year of ministry as associate pastor at the Modesto Central Seventh-day Adventist Church. He graduated from Pacific Union College in 2015 with a degree in theology and will begin MDiv classes in January. “I wanted to be a pastor to ensure the voices of young people are heard in the life of the church,” Josue says.

Beginning Oct. 8, Pastor Josue will be sharing some spiritual insights and food for thought during Fall Revival at PUC. Join us every evening Oct. 8-12 at 8:00 in Dauphinee Chapel in Winning Hall, and at 10 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 11, in the PUC sanctuary for Colloquy, to hear him speak on PUC’s Student Association’s theme of “Beyond.” Pastor Josue adds, “This theme really resonates with what I believe to be part of life’s most rewarding elements: Our ability to grow, step out of our comfort zone, and embrace the stress and tension that growth thrives on.”

We chatted a bit with Josue to get an idea of the kind of guy he is, and the verdict is he’s pretty great. We look forward to hearing what he has to say for Fall Revival.

You’re still experiencing the “new” of your career; what has surprised you about being a pastor?

In my experience, churches can be very open to new ideas when they line up with a fresh, well-communicated vision of what the church could be. For example, instead of having an extended evangelistic series we offered a one-weekend presentation on the power of hope to our community, wrapped up by a Sunday morning project where we partnered with Rise Against Hunger to package thousands of meals for families who needed them in the Philippines. Seeing the full spectrum of ages, including a few non-Adventist community members, working together toward the same goal was inspiring.

I’ve also led out in a 2-month sermon series called “Messy Church” while preaching in jeans and a t-shirt, purchased a drum set for our church, redesigned our youth room, and launched a teen leadership program. All new projects our church has fully embraced as part of our new identity. This has been a refreshing revelation because it shows churches are willing to step out of their comfort zone to share the Good News.

Tell us about your college years. What was your experience as a PUC student?

I thoroughly enjoyed the three years I spent at PUC. I was involved with SOL Club, joined the soccer team my senior year, and loved being a part of intramurals. My favorite class was beginning Greek (shoutout to Dr. Winkle for making that class such a positive learning experience) because I’ve always been drawn to different languages. I changed my major once from mechanical engineering to theology when I transferred to PUC, but If I had spent a little more time at PUC I would’ve picked up a second major in communications or business.

I had several roommates at PUC. Each one of them very different. I never really had any issue getting used to having a roommate but for some reason, they never stayed the whole year, not sure if it was them or me, except for Timmy Baze who I roomed with my first year—what a brave soul. PUC embraced me as family, so being away from home was probably tougher on my parents than on me. I missed the homemade food the most. My favorite meal in the cafeteria is still Friday morning bliss—biscuits and gravy! To get away from campus, I’d take trips down the hill to In-N-Out, Giugni’s, Sherpa … my mouth waters just thinking about those places! And of course, the back 40! Great place for a hike or a run to Inspiration Point with friends to burn off the calories from the cafeteria food.

What job did you have in college?

My first and only job at PUC (aside from Religious VP for the Student Association) was working for the alumni and advancement office as a student caller to our alumni, keeping them in touch with the latest on life at PUC and assisting with any other projects the office had, including the Maxwell Golf Tournament and Homecoming events.

Life didn’t start in college, though. Where did you grow up, and what were you like as a kid?

I was born and raised in Los Angeles. I played a lot of sports; soccer and basketball were my favorites. I also took a couple of years of piano lessons and began playing guitar.

How many siblings do you have?

Many people are surprised when I mention I have a sister, Dalia, who was at PUC during my last two years there. She graduated from PUC with a degree in biology this summer and I’m super proud of her!

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I honestly don’t really remember! But I enjoyed playing with fire trucks and legos, so maybe a firefighter or architect.

What was your experience with church and worship as a kid?

I rarely missed a weekend at church growing up. My parents were intentional about ensuring we had a positive experience getting involved with a variety of church activities such as camping trips, family events, social gatherings, etc. Church is actually where I began to develop a joy for service and fellowship. Worship has been a source of great inspiration for me through all these years and has helped me tap into a clearer picture of God’s vision for my life.

We all have defining moments in our lives—moments we can’t forget and have shaped in a significant way the person we are today. What are two of your defining moments?

The first was definitely transferring to PUC from UC Davis. A lot was happening during my freshman year at UC Davis I had to deal with personally. I was beginning to grapple with who I really wanted to be in life, questioning whether or not I belonged at UC Davis, and dealing with high school relationship baggage. There were times where I felt I didn’t have what it would take to be a successful person on such a competitive campus. If you’ve heard of Impostor Syndrome you understand there are times when we second-guess our accomplishments. We feel if we accomplished something it was because the bar was set lower for us or for any other reason other than our own effort, especially as a Latino.

Transferring to PUC was a breath of fresh air. It reminded me I did belong. My achievements were meaningful and the community on this campus helped cement my identity. I ran for and served as RVP from 2014-15 which turned out to be one of the most positive learning experiences I’ve had in life. I am the first in my family to graduate with a college degree here in the United States and PUC will always have a special place in my heart for helping me get there.

And the second: Accepting the call to be a pastor in Modesto. Taking the next step after college is never an easy thing to do. After spending three years at PUC I fell in love with Northern California. I really wanted to stay close to campus because of all the friends that still remained there. It was a Friday evening before Vespers that I accepted the offer to serve as the associate pastor at Modesto Central. I thought I’d be at peace but I wasn’t. A couple weeks later the leadership team of the Southeastern California Conference reached out to me for a second round of interviews to meet the rest of the team. I began to wonder if I had made the right decision. Fast-forward three years, and looking back I am glad I made the choice to come to Modesto.

The fall after I graduated from PUC was the toughest because I missed the PUC community, friends, Vespers, classes—everything but the homework, ha!—and everyone seemed to be posting about moving back in for the start of the new year while I was in a new place with only a couple of people I knew well, I was thankful to be doing meaningful work with lots of potential. I spent one year out of the three I’ve worked here serving as the interim lead pastor when our senior pastor at the time took a call to a different church. I’ve been challenged to grow in so many areas and the people in this community have been so supportive and generous with me. I’ve made many meaningful relationships with the young people here including several who are now PUC students. I’ve discovered God works out all things for good. Learning to trust the process has given me a new awareness about my own boundaries God wants me to go beyond.

Being a pastor is a 24/7 job, essentially, but when you do find a few moments of free time, what do you enjoy doing?

I put a team together to play in a community co-ed soccer league that plays all year ‘round, and it’s been a blast! I also enjoy a good workout in the gym while listening to podcasts ranging from Revisionist History to the Bible Project, and reading anything by Malcolm Gladwell. And let’s be honest: Netflix after a long day is just icing on the cake.

Where is your favorite place in the world and why?

Anywhere with friends. This year I’ve spent some time in Spain, France, Bolivia, Israel, and Mexico. On all these trips, I’ve gone with different groups of friends and family. Each of these trips has had their challenges but the time spent being present and savoring the moment in front of us while sharing it with people we care about has been priceless. No matter where you go, you are surrounded by extraordinary people. Sometimes it just takes a readjusting of our attitude toward the world to see the opportunities to make meaningful memories around us. Then we pause to realize we are only just scratching the surface and dive deeper into the present.

If you could dream up the best possible outcome of this year’s Fall Revival at PUC, what would it be?

My goal is to remind the students of truths they know deep inside, truths they may have lost sight of along the way, and to challenge us all to go beyond surface level living into the depths of life that await us. The best possible outcome, from my perspective, would be for students to walk away with a better understanding of what it means to be human.

Why do you think events like this are important for college campuses?

I think they really help to recalibrate our purpose and vision in life. They inspire us to be the best version of ourselves and remind us of truths about ourselves and our relationship with the Divine we often forget with all the things vying for our attention.

If you’re interested in chatting with Pastor Josue about his talks or just about life in general, feel free to catch him after the Revival meetings or even stop him along the sidewalk. He’s on-campus all week and happy to chat with anyone who’s interested.

Welcome Back to PUC!

The summer months can be fun, relaxing, productive even; however, once September comes, we really start to miss having students running around campus. New Student Orientation was a blast and we have had so much fun spending the first week of the school year getting to know each other during classes and tons of fun activities.

The #RockDoc PUC president Dr. Bob Cushman and his rock. This is a fun new place to snap a quick pic and keep your eye out for new rock-designs throughout the year.

The Student Association team praying for the new school year during family orientation.

Off to the Alumni dinner!

The class of 2022 playing games and getting to know each other their first night at PUC.

Pancakes with your professors! A fun way to get to know the people who will teach your classes over a yummy breakfast.

PUC’s student-led praise team spreading God’s word through song.

The welcome back party was a great time to get to know each other and to find which clubs you want to be a part of!

We just want to say a huge WELCOME BACK to all our students and wish everyone a fantastic school year.

Department of Visual Arts Senior Thesis Projects

By Celeste Wong

This year’s Senior Thesis Exhibition for visual arts students was held on Thursday, May 19th, in the Rasmussen Art Gallery, located between the Nelson Memorial Library and Paulin Hall.  The exhibition included the theses of 12 graduating visual arts majors ranging from fine art, graphic design, and photography.

For the film and television majors, they premiered their thesis films at the annual Diogenes Film Festival at the Cameo Cinema in St. Helena on Thursday, May 31. Three graduating film and television majors premiered their thesis films, along with other short films by other film students.

These graduating seniors began their year-long project starting at the beginning of the 2017-2018 school year. At the beginning of the year, they have had to pitch their thesis ideas to the entire department of visual arts faculty for approval and have consistently worked from then until now. Students who are BFA students are expected to work on their projects for at least a whopping 300 hours, to give some perspective.

Fine Art

Sierra Driver
Graphic novel

Lexi Haylock
Found objects installation

“My thesis is titled ‘Homegrown.’ I wanted to capture my most intimate and cherished memories of growing up in the beautiful nature of Angwin. I was inspired by changes that will be occurring in my life as I graduate from PUC and move away from my childhood town. I’ve always been fascinated by the connection between emotion and memory. This project is my attempt at visually showing how the most prominent memories of my home have changed as I continue to grow.”

Chanel Lee
Diptych of large-scale watercolor paintings

Drew Macomber
Series of watercolor paintings

Laurel Williams
Assemblage installation

“My project is about technology, social media, and information, how these things are connected to education and about some of their negative effects on the development of children and youth today. I was inspired to do this because I’ve noticed there are higher levels of anxiety, depression, and stress amongst successive generations in America and I wondered if there might possibly be a common factor. It looks like that factor is how we tie the gathering of information or even education to success and put pressure on our students to ‘be successful.’ Increasingly over the decades, it has led to something called ‘play deprivation’ which can inhibit the development of youth in ways that counteract their preparation for a successful life. Hopefully, those who see my project will be inspired to rethink what success means to them and make better choices for themselves and their futures.”

Celeste Wong
Ceramics installation

“My project confronts and brings insight into what it means to be biracial or multiracial. I myself am multiracial and usually identify as just ‘American;’ however, this response is an answer that people find too vague. By blood I am half Filipino, quarter Chinese, and quarter Euro-American mix, to put it simply. Do I relate to any of these cultures? No, I do not; my parents were born and raised in America just like me. I started to open up about my frustration of finding my own ‘identity’ and in return, I found many bi/multiracial students on campus whom I’ve shared stories with. Included in my installation, I have quotes from more than 15 PUC students, sharing both the positive and negatives of being bi/multiracial, accompanied by expressive ceramic vessels.”

Graphic Design

Jenae Benson
Educational poster series, photographs, and handouts

“My thesis project is about raising awareness about the harms drugs have on a fetus of a pregnant mother. I was inspired by my mom because throughout her career as a school nurse she has told me heartbreaking stories about children who live a difficult life because they were drug exposed. My hope for this project is to make an impression on at least one person—that could be one baby’s life changed forever.”

Joshua Davis
Graphic novel

Giang Pham
Illustrated storybook

“My project is a storybook, loosely based on my own story revolving around the theme of relational struggles. I enjoy graphic novel, manga, and animation illustrations, so I wanted to make my own.”

Jackie Rivera
Hand-painted and designed signage installation

“As a letterer and designer, I’m really inspired by the letterforms and signage of the 20th century. For my thesis, I wanted to create a series of signs inspired by vintage signage I grew up seeing around small, historic Northern California towns. I wanted to learn about old sign making processes such as sign painting and woodworking. As a designer, learning about the history of graphic design is very important to me, and learning these old techniques has given me a much deeper appreciation and love for the career path I’ve chosen.”

Chad Smith
Series of digital paintings and parallax paintings

Photography

Alexis Howard
Photography series of vintage memorabilia

“My project is called ‘The Things She Left Behind’ and it is about photographing the things that belong to my great-grandmother. I was inspired by my great-grandmother and the impact she made in my life. So I wanted to do something to honor her.”

Film & Television

Rachel Ermshar

“My thesis is an exploration of growth, how we react and grow to different situations we end up in.”

Sarah Martinez

Gabriela Talevera

“My thesis is a documentary about the civil war in El Salvador. I was inspired by all the stories my mom would tell me about her childhood.”

After reading the highlights of some of the year-long projects these seniors have been working on, hopefully, you are inspired by these artists and filmmakers!

 

Business, Communication, and Visual Arts Alumni Share Their Wisdom

From left to right: Will Yoshimura, Amanda Granados, and Jackson Boren.

By Becky St. Clair

On Thursday, April 19, the departments of business, communication, and visual arts at Pacific Union College held a joint colloquium. It was a panel discussion on the topic of “Successful Alumni,” and each department had alumni representing.

Panelists were: Jackson Boren, 2008 graduate of the department of communication, currently the alumni director for the Loma Linda University School of Nursing; Amanda Granados, 2010 graduate of the department of business, owner of Granados | Hillman, an accounting firm; and Will Yoshimura, 2015 graduate of the department of visual arts, currently employed as a graphic designer at Facebook.

Michelle Rai, chair of the department of communication, moderated the panel discussion.

What are the top three skills you utilize every day in your work?

Jackson Boren: People skills are extremely important, in both large and small groups. Public speaking is also something I do often.

Amanda Granados: As an accountant, I clearly use my numbers skills regularly, but critical thinking and people skills are right up there, too. Which is something a lot of people don’t realize about accountants—we do actually need to know how to interact well with others.

Will Yoshimura: Well, obviously graphic design. But also critical thinking.

Name a class in which you wish you would have paid more attention.

JB: I wish there had been the project management class PUC offers now when I was in school, because that would have been extremely helpful.

AG: Real estate. It’s something that affects everyone, and I wish I would have put more effort into that class.

WY: Statistics, for sure. Also, I wish I would have taken a philosophy class. I honestly think it would benefit anyone in any field.

What would you tell your freshman self?

WY: Actually try at college. I didn’t take it seriously until the end of my sophomore year. I would tell myself to take classes I was interested in and see what fits; see what I want to do with my life.

What’s your secret to success? What gets you up in the morning and keeps you going?

JB: Honestly, it’s about identifying an internal need and finding the path to fulfill it. In my current job, my personal philosophy is that the foundation of alumni identity is their experience as a student. If I can connect them with the best part of that experience and build on it now that they’re alumni, I’m succeeding at what I do. That’s what keeps me going.

AG: Helping people. When I can help my clients see something they hadn’t noticed before, or save them from having to pay thousands of dollars somewhere down the road, it makes me feel good. It’s definitely awesome motivation to get out of bed and go to work in the morning!

WY: Being obsessed with what I do. I mean, not to a harmful degree, but if you’re really interested in the work you do, you’re going to work harder and learn more about it than those who aren’t so obsessed, and it gives you a leg up on others. You’ll get better and better and what you do won’t feel like work.

There’s a lot of talk these days about how Millennials are changing the workplace. What advice can you give to the students here as they prepare to be those Millennials?

JB: People don’t stay in one job for 30-40 years anymore. We change jobs a lot more. So take the experience you get from all of those jobs and apply the lessons to your current work. It’s a different workplace scenario than it was in past generations.

AG: Communicate what you need and want to those you work for and with. If you want to come in later in the morning, talk to your boss about it. They will likely be understanding and work with you within reason. But they won’t if they don’t know what you want.

WY: It depends on what field you’re in, but honestly, as long as you show up, work hard, and get the stuff done, you’ll be fine.

What’s one of the biggest challenges you face in your work?

JB: Sometimes you have to say no. And that’s hard and it doesn’t make people happy. One of the hardest things to learn is how to say no without actually saying it, even if that’s really what you’re saying.

AG: Admitting when I’m wrong. And yes, I’ve been wrong on someone’s taxes before. It’s so hard to admit failure, but it’s so important. Then I pick myself up, learn from it, and get right back to work.

WY: Being a politician. When you work with a lot of people, you have to be really diplomatic.

When things get tough, what do you do to stay on track?

JB: Someone once told me, “Don’t let the details destroy you.” Keeping a big picture perspective at all times helps in those moments, because I can take a step back and see where I am and where I need to be.

AG: Take a break and call a friend. Talking about the problem aloud really helps me work through it and often helps me find a solution.

WY: Take a walk.

What’s important to keep in mind when negotiating a salary?

JB: Definitely research industry standards. If you can get an internship before you graduate, take it seriously because it can translate into a job when you graduate. Don’t just think about salary and benefits, but also consider your quality of life. I once had a job where I was commuting quite a ways every day, and I negotiated with my employer to cover all of my tolls for the commute and incorporate that cost into my salary.

AG: When you get to negotiate it’s your one opportunity to make a difference in your compensation. Don’t miss the chance! Ask for what you want and the worst that will happen is that they will say no. Always ask.

WY: Like Jackson said, do your research. Glassdoor can be really helpful in this area. Also keep in mind that your total compensation includes equity in the company—stock. So think that through and ask for more if you want it. Statistics say that 90% of employers won’t rescind their job offer because you asked for more money or benefits, so just ask.

What advice would you give the scared seniors who have no idea how to get started after graduation?

JB: Find an internship where you want to work. It may not be paid, but you get face time with the company, you get experience working there, and you make connections. Also don’t overlook the line in the job description that reads, “Other duties as assigned.” Do those things well. It will show your character and work ethic, and might reveal skills you didn’t know you had. Become familiar with the process at the company where you’re working, and the different players you work with. Become familiar with their roles so you can respect and appreciate them, and that respect and appreciation will be reciprocated.

AG: Look for ways you can apply everything you’ve experienced and learned in college to the jobs you want and are applying for. You may think you’re starting with nothing, but everything in college can be a benefit to you in your career. So keep a positive attitude and stay confident.

WY: Apply to a bunch of places. You won’t hear back from a lot, and you’ll be rejected a lot, and you may want to just finish your homework and go to a dark place to cry, and that’s okay! But in all seriousness, stay positive and know that eventually, your hard work will pay off. And use LinkedIn! It’s how you get recruited.

Amanda, tell us about transitioning from the traditional “work for someone else” situation into owning your own business.

AG: It was a hard decision to make, to be honest. There’s usually some loyalty involved between you and your boss, and you wonder if leaving is the right thing to do. The clincher for me was stepping back to look at the big picture: What would my life look like if I were to make this change? It would eliminate my commute, making me more flexible, able to spend more time with my family, and take my office anywhere I want to. I also keep more of the money I make working for myself, which is a big deal! It takes confidence to do something like this, and that was my biggest obstacle. I had to convince myself that enough people believed in me, and I believed in me, and I could do it.

How do you maintain your creative side while doing what someone else wants you to?

WY: I’m not going to lie—at some point you’re likely going to be doing work you don’t like and don’t want to do. It’s a fact. So I recommend you keep doing side projects. Also, keep in mind that working with what other people want involves compromise. Keeping the balance between introducing your own vision and also accepting theirs. You walk through problems together as a team.

How did your experience at PUC impact your career?

JB: I’m a better communicator because of PUC. I saw the power of good communication in a professional setting and learned the value of recognizing and learning from my mistakes. I learned not to be afraid of failure, but to learn from it and allow it to direct me toward progress.

AG: The best things I took away from PUC were positive relationships and solidified ethics.

WY: PUC gave me the thing I love most now—design.