Friday, April 24, 2020

Microstory 1350: Advice

College Student: Thank you for meeting me. My name is College Student, and I’m interested in your program.
College Advisor: All right. Well, how many film classes have you already taken?
College Student: I took a screenwriting class, does that count?
College Advisor: That could count towards credit. You’re a junior, though?
College Student: Yes.
College Advisor: Well, let me take a look at your transcript.
College Student: Sure, here it is.
College Advisor: [...] Okay, so you have all of your core classes, so you’re well on track. It looks like you are a writing major now, is that correct?
College Student: Yes, I thought I liked it, and I do, but I’m having doubts about leaving school with that as my degree. I mean, I don’t feel like I wasted my time with all those courses, but when I’m applying for work, is that what I want them to see?
College Advisor: Well, what kind of work are you looking to apply for? This ain’t California.
College Student: I plan to move to California.
College Advisor: Well, Hollywood job hunting is a lot different than regular jobs. What did you want to actually do in the industry? Write?
College Student: Yes, I would still write, but I feel like I’ve gotten too much experience in other areas, like literature, and creative writing. I just want to look as good as I possibly can. So the classes will help. It’s just the major that I’m worried about. I’m really hoping to graduate in a year and a half, since I already have a place to live in L.A. lined up.
College Advisor: Okay, well Film Studies is not a blow-off program. It requires a minimum of sixty credit hours. Of course, that’s on top of the general education requirements, which it seems you already have. I don’t know them all by heart, so it’s possible you’re still missing one or two of those. Let’s do a little bit of math, and see if we can get this done in a year and a half. You would definitely need to take summer classes, and either way, your workload would be huge.
College Student: Okay, cool.
[transcript cut for relevance]
College Advisor: Okay, thanks, bye. [Hangs up phone.] Yeah, it looks like that history class doesn’t count for us, so with that included, you’ll need to take eighteen hours for three semesters, and three summer classes. We got lucky on those ones; they’re not offered every summer. And this is all assuming we can get you into a couple different classes this semester. I would have rather you asked me about this a few weeks ago. No matter what, we’re talking about a huge workload, and you can’t fail a single one. It’s technically feasible, but it leaves one major question.
College Student: Am I willing to commit to this change?
College Advisor: That’s right. Are you? You could graduate this coming summer with your current major, and all you would need to do is take one summer class.
College Student: That certainly sounds like the most rational choice. What would you do? I don’t know your personal history, but if you wanted to make it big in Hollywood, does all this matter?
College Advisor: Honestly, no. The degree, that is, doesn’t matter. The classes definitely do. It would still be tremendously helpful to your education to learn some of this stuff. When you go to Hollywood—and I’m not going to be one of those people who tells you that you probably won’t make it; your family can do that—they don’t care what your major was, or even if you have a degree. What I recommend you do is hold off on graduation, and take as many of these classes as you can, within reason. I wouldn’t bog yourself down with them; we can go over the most helpful ones. That way, you can stick to your current major, and be fine. How does that sound?
College Student: That’s not a bad idea. I suppose the education is more important than the diploma.
College Advisor: I would agree with that. Now, let’s talk about which classes someone in your position should take, and when.

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