Today I read about this Experiment Design School called 30 Weeks in Fast Company. I think it is the perfect thing for me...or anybody in fact. I've been trying to explain to my friends what "design thinking" is and just how it has driven the success of the top companies in the world. However, they continue to think that that manner of thinking is only for creative or artsy people. They've only known me as a creative person.
Little do they know my parents were molding me to be an engineer. I took no art classes after elementary school and excelled in math, sciences, and Spanish. Shoot, I thought that I was supposed to be an engineer...whether I liked it or not. But when I went to my first orientation at Georgia Tech, I changed my major to Architecture from a gut feeling. I just couldn't do it. Nothing inside of me was inspired by engineering and everything inside of me was already feeling regret for doing something that I didn't choose to do. I chose Architecture, it inspires me, it amazes me, it is influential, and it is all around us.
My journey to get my Architecture degree was a tough one; full of sleepless nights, teaching myself programs I had never heard of, and learning how to design space. Being a D1 student-athlete didn't make it any easier. The thing is, these obstacles weren't the problem, the problem was that I wasn't enjoying the process, only the result...and that was seventy percent because it was finally finished. I was detached from my own process and I didn't know how, but it became more apparent when I produced projects that I didn't like. My professor would, maybe even my studio would deem it exceptional, but it was like I didn't know what it was.
My final year of college I clustered out of studio, meaning I could take 10 hours of another major's courses, with Industrial Design Courses. I took Visual Design Thinking, Design Sketching, and Advanced Design Sketching. Man did I fall in love with sketching and the design process. I felt like no idea could stay locked up in my brain; that it all could be seen and I could draw it. This totally changed my course in life. I knew it was right because I was in love with the whole process - the thinking, the making, the redo-ing. From this point on, I started researching ID and design thinking. I needed to know what this new thing was that I enjoyed so much so I wouldn't repeat my past. I knew I needed to make decisions that were all or nothing. I need to love it all so I can dedicate myself to it, like I did to my ID courses.
I'm still on this same journey, tracking what makes me happy and what doesn't. Searching for inspiration each day through pictures, TV shows, blogs, small adventures, and more so I always have an idea in my pocket. Reading Fast Company has gave me so many different sources of inspiration that I just go to it first before my browser gets filled with tabs.
I don't know why I always feel the need to tell this story. Maybe it's because I don't want to feel like a failure at Architecture or a failure at something I set my mind to. I think I am still trying to connect the dots of my journey, but I still don't see how they come together. 30 Weeks may be that culmination, bringing together design thinking, leading, and the entrepreneurial nature of our society. This story is far from finished, but in the mean time...
I want to make another dot.