Have you ever been asked this dreaded question by your parents, “ So, what are you going to do after graduation?” Then you stare at them with a blank clueless look on your face trying to mask the inevitable horror and depression that is beginning to take residence in your stomach? Well, my mom just asked me that question when I was in the middle of an intense homework session. Perfect timing. I tried to avoid the conversation using the “I have too much homework to do” excuse (which is always true). However, her disapproving tone clearly said this conversation was not over.
Unbeknownst to her, just the other day I was having a serious conversation with a former classmate about the grim reality of being a fashion student. Having to pay a soul selling tuition, school expenses, as well as the mere attempt to stay alive- that costs the very skin off our bones; it is indeed a very depressing situation that hauntingly resides in the dark chambers of my mind. It also reminded me that I may not even make it to senior year with all the mounting expenses. That is why I have been busting my behind trying to enter as many scholarship opportunities as I can to cover my tuition. I just finished submitting a project for one of the scholarships that I put my whole heart and soul into. God I pray I win or at least be one of the finalists who will receive a much needed PAID internship in the summer. Feel free to pray for me too by the way lol.
My friend and I recently talked about how we will manage financing our final year collections. Some students spend as much as $50 000 on their collection…I shall let that sink in. Yes, I go to school with some crazy rich people. We talked about possibly recycling old garments, trying to get models off the street, any creative way in which we could save money but the grim reality still remains. If you want to get the Womenswear or Menswear Designer of the Year nomination or that highly coveted CFDA award you have to let some money pour out or God willing you snag a sponsor that will back you 100%. I can literally feel my spirit sink as I write this article.
Thankfully, I have parents and friends that are 100% supportive of me and my dreams. Yes fashion is super competitive, yes the rich have clear advantages, yes it is a heartbreaking and bank breaking journey, yes I might have to put my ultimate fashion dream on hold for some time in order to face daily realities in order to make that dream happen but you know what? I want this. I, Sarah-Joy Jones, want this so bad! It is all I ever wanted and God willing it is what my life will be. I’ve never seen myself as a passionate or emotional person but there is absolutely no doubt that I am passionate about what I do. No matter how crazy my workload gets and the occasional panic attacks that come with it, at the end of the day I love it and I feel happy and fulfilled. Student life is rough no doubt and life can get depressing but I just want to encourage you to never forget your passion, it is your life.