- Slowly stop caring about what you wear. This is ironic considering I go to a fashion school, but as a fashion design major, all of our energy goes into making kick-ass garments.
- Working long hours. I cannot speak for anyone outside of the fashion design program, but I constantly find myself underestimating how much time I need. I go into the design studio to work on my projects thinking 3 hours is enough to finish all my tasks, then I'll look up and 6 hours went by. Sometimes I will look at the clock and realize that I have to stop in the middle of a project to be somewhere because I ran out of time. Where I am now in the program has prevented me from getting home before 6 PM.
- Social life may or may not go into the toilet. I say this uncertainly because for me I have a great social life, I have a healthy amount of friends, I'm involved on the board for two clubs, but it doesn't always work this way for every FIDM student. When I started my first quarter, the roommate I shared a room with would go to class, come home, and didn't do anything else. I, however, found student activities, and there have been so many opportunities to meet people and make connections. Making time for friends takes major time management skills because there's already so much work with school.
- Job/internship searching starts sooner than you think. Since all FIDM student enter 2 year A.A. programs, by the time you get halfway through the program you start stressing about finding academic internships while in school as well as having to manage your time if an internship is obtained. While 2 years can go by quickly, there's the stress of gaining industry experience to make you more applicable when you graduate and start looking for full-time employment.
- You become career oriented. At FIDM, all of our classes are taught with the purpose of training you to be proficient employed professionals. All of the instructors relate the projects we work on as if this were a job. All the instructors at FIDM are industry professionals so they do grade our assignments, projects, and presentations as if we were in the business right now.I actually like that they make us think this way because it motivates me to work harder. I find it effective because we are expected to graduate as an industry professional.
- The work never ends. Because my school runs on a quarterly system all-year round, we have 10 weeks worth of time which isn't a lot. Instructors will assign a crap load of homework in which we have a whole week to do that. Also on average a full-time student like myself will take on 5 classes per quarter so let's say we have a paper to write for each of those classes by the next week, then that means we have 1 week to write 5 papers. It is a lot of work, but it's not impossible to do it all. Most of our homework consists of visually demanding projects and presentations. For my draping and pattern drafting classes (which are 6 hour classes by the way), each week we have to turn in a set of patterns and a finished garment. I am passionate about what I do so it doesn't seem so bad, it's actually fun. I love my fashion sketching class, but then there are days I don't draw to the instructor's standards, or I'm completely frustrated and hate everything I draw taking me 3 plus hours to complete.
- You don't really get the typical college experience. Because the program goes by super fast and the work load only gets worse the further into the program you go, you never have time to really go out to fun parties, or to even throw a party for the most part.
- You become a real adult prepared for the world at a young age. When I graduate from FIDM, I will be 19 going on 20 with my first college degree. Student housing gives you a full-on two bedroom apartment (with three other people of course) with a kitchen, two bathrooms, a washer and dryer and is fully furnished. We get to live in a full-on apartment as if we're living on our own. This means that you have to buy your own groceries, cook your own meals, clean up after yourself, do your own laundry, and the whole nine yards. FIDM feels like a full time job which will put you in the adult mindset to balancing work, school, social life, and personal life at 18 years old (depending on how old you start college).
I hope everyone is off to a great start to the new school year, it's so weird because right now I just got through finals week for the summer quarter. I know it's insane! I just finished another quarter while most of you are starting a new year, but I hope you're making the most of this fresh start!
Stay beautiful <3