Launching my career

Okay so I graduated from SUNY Albany with a degree in Environmental Science. That hasn’t been working out, I really can’t get a job in the field without more degrees, certifications that you get on the job, or 3+ years of job experience. While I continue to work as a waiter and look for better sales positions so I can get in a 9-5 schedule and get my weekends back, I have decided to go back to my first love and something I consider myself good at, and that’s graphics, design, and computers.

I’m looking for validation in terms of my plan, career choice, and the ideas I have of executing this plan. I am choosing to do this for a few reasons: I want to do what I love as I feel I work harder at this than other things I don’t care so much about; I see a large volume of job opportunities for designers and developers. Sure devs and designers are probably abundant, but companies, I assume, need teams of them as there’s way too much involved in larger websites for one person to know HTML/CSS, xml, xhtml, php, ruby, python, wordpress, mysql, javascript, on top of graphic development blah blah blah there’s just so much; It seems like a career path where once I get in as a junior designer or developer, which should have a salary where I could have my own place and live on my own, because there’s so much to learn there’s a lot of room for growth in the field; The discipline and field is not going anywhere and is only expanding; My environmental science degree should be seen as relevant, as the math and science aspects translate and could help me get a job even though my degree isn’t in design; and lastly I have a sister-in-law who is a professional graphic designer who could help me put together a killer portfolio.

So I’m hoping you guys could tell me if all of that is basically true or not, maybe I’m diluted or something. And finally here’s my plan of action:

I already know HTML and CSS. I just bought a few more books to brush up and help solidify those skills. I also bought books on illustrator and vector graphics, those are my main skills but I want to be really solid, my portfolio will consist of fake logos and some real ones that iv sold to businesses. I’m already fluent in PS so I should be good there. Once I have illustrator, html, and CSS down, I also bought books on javascript. Using my designs and art as content, I would then get my hands dirty writing a website using html and CSS while I learn javascrict/jquery and slowly impliment those elements to make my personal site more dynamic and “fancy”.

My idea here is that my core strengths would be graphics and design, but if I show that I built my own website with html, css, and JS, and therefore could comprehensively work with developers and should have a leg up on your run of the mill designer, I should be able to land an entry level design position pretty easily.

Will this work? Sorry for posting this in a random forum, i didt know were to do this. Also I appologize for it being so long, but this is my life here lol

Depends on which field you want to apply for. Freelancer? Yes. Employee at big corp? Probably not because you would need a degree in IT field. Not impossible but 99% of the time, they won’t even interview you unless you have a degree. Since you already have a college degree, you could go back and earn Computer Science w/o taking garbage filler classes. This is just my opinion but that’s what I would do.

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That and the Republicans have conclusively proven that “Global Warming” isn’t real!! :wink: LMAO

If you do things right, that will pay better than an Environmental Science dude with a Masters degree!!

1.) Talk to as many people who are doing what you just described, and who are succeeding at it.
2.) Repeat #1 again and again
3.) When doing #1 and #2, try to figure out where the “Needs” are. For example, doing design with Mobile is probably still fairly hot. Don’t just learn IT or Design - learn what is in demand!
4.) Consider becoming an Entrepreneur in maybe 5 years as you work on your new Plan-A.

For those of us who like water and oxygen, your degree should pay $100,000/year, but that is another thread!! :wink:

Unless you are “water-soluble”, I think you meant “deluded”…

No, you seem level-headed to me - just keep researching like any good Environmental Scientist would do…

(BTW, maybe consider getting the Wed Design thing going while you continue working on your first calling? Maybe some day you could live in an Environmentally Sustainable log cabin in the Pacific NW, with the love of your life, doing environmental research by day, and using your IT skills to pay for more firewood and bean sprouts to live off of? Don’t laugh…)

Sounds good!

I think you have a great attitude, seem reasonable, and have a good plan. I would just add, don’t completely trash your original plans of helping save the world’s environment.

Who says you can’t do both???

The Earth is counting on your to help her out… Always “Think Green”!!

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Thanks for the advice. Iv been working in Illustrator on my graphics and read the book, Vector Basic Training which is amazing. I’m still applying for whatever entry level positions are available in Environmental Science. Rn I don’t think I would be able to go back to school, but if I did I would go for a web development or graphics program, not Comp Sci. I have programming experience and JS and Python or something like it I think would be better for me than Java or C or something like it

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