Hola. My name is Sara. I am a 22-year-old senior at Arizona State’s journalism school in Phoenix. My area of focus is public relations, and I love it. I am excited to be writing a post for Ignite. It is a great solution that will leave a positive impact on your life, as it did for mine.
My passion is writing. I have loved writing since I was a little girl, and I can remember my first diary. It was a gift I received when I was about 7 years old from my father. It had Winnie the Pooh on the cover and came with a bright red pen.I carried that diary everywhere I went. On vacations. Out on the playground at school. Everywhere. I would jot daily adventures within the pages of my diary, and as my writing matured, the scribblings in my diary became a passion for writing. I wanted to make it my career.
As I grew older, I developed an interest in fashion and design. It was once I started my studies in public relations and business at Arizona State’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication that I knew I wanted to chase after my dream of writing in the field of fashion. I set my sights on working with Condé Nast, a prominent publisher of magazines like VOGUE, The New Yorker and GQ.
Yet, even being a student on track to acquire a degree from one of the country’s top journalism schools, I was still hesitant to chase my dream. I was too easily influenced by how others felt I should live my life and what career path I should take. I should be a lawyer. I should be a doctor. I should get into politics. None of those careers felt like “me.”
Then I was introduced to Tom McDermott at Ignite. Prior to that, I had taken Strengths Finder, and was given “achiever, deliberative, focus, futuristic, and responsibility” as my top 5 strengths themes. Then Mr. McDermott had me take a far more extensive assessment that included strengths, motivators and behaviors. I wasn’t sure what was going to happen in my meeting with Mr. McDermott. I understood we would discuss my results and how they corresponded with my work ethic. But what I didn’t expect was the inspiration that came from that meeting and how I can apply my unique traits to achieve my dream career.
Mr. McDermott explained many people are in careers that do not mesh with their unique collective combination of talent, strengths, motivators, personality and curiosity. Rather than finding a career they enjoy where they can use their skills, they settle with a career that wastes their talent.
We discussed how much I loved writing, how much I enjoyed telling stories, how much admiration I had for designers and their inspiration. Mr. McDermott made it clear to me the path I needed to pursue and how my natural traits can help get me there.
Our meeting wrapped up with us discussing getting my writing to a higher audience through blogs. I became more acquainted with blogs during my junior year at ASU, and now I am using that skill to launch my personal website profiling my writing. Since our first meeting, I have been published three times in The Arizona Republic and recently started an internship with the Scottsdale-based advertising and PR group Pinball Digital.
I will have my bachelor’s degree at the end of the year and aspire to continue my education with a degree in fashion marketing. Had I not spoken with Mr. McDermott about my natural traits and career aspirations, I would probably never have realized where I wanted to steer my career and life.
I encourage everyone to take the opportunity to experience Ignite tool to discover their unique gift. Ignite allowed me to put my natural talent and strengths toward my passion and mold a career out of it. Had I not had that discussion with Mr. McDermott, I would have not realized the direction I wanted my life to go in. I appreciate the attentiveness the people at Ignite have for their mission.