And just like that, training is over.

I was in San Francisco for 26 days completing three and a half weeks of training. I need to set up my home office and put my training to use–I’m going to get students to the biggest private art school in the nation. I wish I could have taken advantage of the opportunities for which I am now a resource. They are quite amazing–helping you sharpen your craft of choice and break into the industry.

My view walking home from work after the first Friday of training

I’m pretty terrified to do my first presentation… at a huge event in front of my managers, nonetheless. Practice, practice, practice makes perfect. There are parts of my job I am SUPER excited about–interacting with tons of new people, being a resource for art education, traveling… but other parts I am not to excited to do. But alas, I get paid to put my skills to use in something I am passionate about and that’s what counts.

Training was challenging! We had a week of info dumping, product knowledge, and tours. Followed by a week of student engagement and communication techniques and then a week of policies and procedures. Oh, and two 100-question assessments. As grueling as it was, majority of it was vastly interesting. And I had an amazing group of coworkers to serve as wonderful study buddies, food/coffee buddies, happy hour buddies, everything buddies. What a blessing. Sometimes you just click with people. Having met 8 people from so many different places with a ton of different experiences and perspectives has been wonderful! It’s exactly what I need and love. I hope I’ll get to see them when I find myself in San Francisco.

Around the corner from the second building where I was training | San Francisco City Hall

Blackbird in the Castro after our last day of training

I wish I could have explored The City a little bit more, but working 9-6 sure is tiring! Not to mention the studying I had to do. But fun times were definitely had with both friends and family. And “living” in a different city always helps me find out more about myself and what I believe in. There are issues here, like in any other big city–homelessness, gentrification, lack of resources for low-income communities, transportation–things that get overshadowed by tourism and city glamour. “Oh, that’s just how it is in SF.” Yes, it does make me appreciate my current situation. But what else should I put my weight behind? [Okay, I don’t weigh that much, but still.] It was easier in college–I threw my efforts at purposeful organizations, sometimes even helped shape them. But without labels and deadlines and the guise of students issues (as I am now in “real life,” not college), it’s hard to prioritize or even grasp my place in the issues. The world is so big and there is so much going to just spend my time lost and static. Where do I go if my paid duties do not explicitly focus on social issues? There is the focus on personal development. As always. But it is now a question of how I weave that into “real life,” affecting change somewhere, somehow.

 When you’ve worked hard, and done well, and walked through that doorway of opportunity… you do not slam it shut behind you… you reach back, and you give other folks the same chances that helped you succeed.  –Michelle Obama

I am ready for this new chapter in my life. Okay, and even if I am not ready, it’s happening. It’s nice to have a salary and benefits… though I could use a few more vacation days! Time to get it together and get to work!