Careers 10 was a class I didn’t enjoy doing, mostly because it was online, and because I felt like I wasn’t learning anything. I went into careers 12 thinking that it might be the same, but I was very wrong. This class was one of my favourite PLP classes I’ve been in and also one where I created some of the work I’m most proud of. So let me tell you about what made careers 12 such a good experience.
One of the highlights of Careers 12 was during the beginning of the project. Over a couple of weeks, we had several guest speakers join our class in person or by zoom. This was incredibly valuable as we got to not only hear the stories of their careers but also got to ask them questions about whatever we wanted from university to managing money. My favourite presenter was Kurt Scheewee, a successful businessman and father. I thought his presentation gave an incredibly honest insight into the brutality of the business world. His story about having to fire one of his close friends was really powerful, I’m not sure if I could do that. Getting to talk to him about why he chose to pursue what he did and what his biggest advice is has left me with a powerful craft note for the future.
The next step in our project was selecting and reading a “self help” book. self-help books are any book that wants to promote a change in a lifestyle or habit that the author believes can make your life better. This leaves a lot of options for what book you could pick. As a person who loves math and science, I decided that I would like to read the 80/20 principle (it has a fraction in the name). What I didn’t expect was that the 80/20 principle would be so interesting. Specifically, the first 150 pages of the book were awesome to me. Being introduced to the 80/20 principle was good, but the examples of it being used were amazing. Hearing how businesses used the 80/20 principle to succeed in real life helped emphasize just how useful it could be. I wrote a full book report that is just below this paragraph if you are interested.
The work I’m most proud of in this project is my author biography of Richard Koch, the author of the 80/20 principle. Angelo, my classmate and friend, and I decided to work together to find and refine a canvas template for our author bios. Our goal was to create a professional-looking design and use other tools to make it personal to our author. Overall using canvas took a lot more work than just writing a document, but the end product made it worth it. I think it really enhanced what I had to write and also allowed me to demonstrate my design and collaboration skills to my teachers.
The closing part of our project was our mini Exhibition of learning. The goal of the exhibition was to present what we had learned from our books to our peers and interest them in reading the books. The way we were tasked to do this was through the creation of an artifact. Immediately I thought of an interactive metaphor for the 80/20 principle using a scale. I wanted to create a mechanical scale that would show the audience that some of the weights I used would have a much bigger impact than others. For example, if the total weight of all the weights was 100 grams, 2 of the weights would weigh 80g together and the other 8 would only weigh 20 grams. This would create a precise example of the 80/20 principle in action. On top of my scale, I created a small hand-drawn animation to highlight my favourite example from the book. This example is about IBM and how they used the 80/20 principle to refine the code in their computers. I completed my animation quickly and moved on to creating my scale metaphor. Unfortunately, it turns out that creating a nicely balanced scale out of wood is extremely challenging. Because of this setback, I ended up using a digital scale to create my metaphor. Taking away the visual aspect of a mechanical scale also took away from the metaphor that I was trying to create so I decided to focus more on my animation. In the end, the exhibition was still really successful and I got to show my teachers my ability to adapt and overcome a problem.
In conclusion, this careers class was so enjoyable because of the knowledge we gained from our books, amazing guest speakers and the projects we got to complete. I Feel like I demonstrated some of my best learning in any PLP project during this semester and I am excited to continue to use what I have learned in the future.