Mastering communications: 6 things I’ve learnt from returning to the books

Mastering communications: 6 things I’ve learnt from returning to the books

I need to remember every now and then why I took on running a business, FULL TIME Uni during a pandemic, whilst home schooling a 6 year old and 4 year old. Most people think I’m mad, I think mad is understating it.

Whilst I have enjoyed going back to the old haunt (that I tried so desperately to escape from 20 years ago), its been a ride… a bumpy, scary, sweary, wine-y ride. And whilst there are so many awesome things I’m learning about Communication and Digital Marketing, BOY hasn’t Uni changed in the past 20 years!?!

If you are thinking about re-entering the world of Uni, here are a few things I’ve learnt for anyone who’s for up for a bumpy-scary-sweary-wine-y ride too, and for anyone who truly wants out of their comfort zone.

  1. Its all online. Yep, all of it – Remember the 5 hours you spent each time you entered the library mindlessly trying to find books that would be the answer to ALL your questions in your assignment? (except maybe for the few token books to add to the bibliography at the end). Well its online, yep you search, you find, you read. DONE. All in a few minutes. And if its not available to read online, then its not worth reading (but it still may be ok for a cheeky bibliography entry).
  2. EVERYTHING you have ever done in your career to date will come in handy at this point. If you are after a complete career change, a career evolution, or a career tweak, you will never be starting from scratch when you start to study what you are interested in, no matter what course you choose. I went from a 20 year corporate career in IT and project management to building a successful photography business and then back to Uni to study a Masters of Communication. There have been many times whilst doing late night assignments, where I have had to draw upon my previous experience to learn new skills. I’ve used my project management skills to apply them to a public relations strategy, my business case skills to develop an organisational change management plan and my personal brand photography work to build a social media presence and connect with people online. My point is this, if you use the foundations that you used to build the original house, you just have to put a new roof and walls in.
  3. Referencing – it killed you then, it will kill you again. Enough said
  4. There is no need to befriend the nerd when you study something you’re actually interested in. OK, let me explain this one a little bit. My undergraduate degree was in IT, yep that’s still a chuckle 20 years later. But how on earth did I get through some of the most hated parts of my degree? (and there were plenty) I am going confess, I befriended a nerd. AND I made him think that he some chance of me being his girlfriend, so I could pick his brains to get those pesky assignments done. OK, not my proudest moment but hey, I have “object modelling techniques using c++” on my university transcript now so, why wouldn’t you? It’s good thing I have grown up since then and I am now studying something I love, that doesn’t scare the s*&^%t out of me and does not require a poor unsuspecting nerds help
  5. There is an assignment checking service now! Yep, there are little internet fairies that you send your assignment to, they check it for grammar, structure and even references (but hey, who doesn’t know a lot about that already (see point 3)) and send it back to you all marked up at all hours of the night! (perhaps now I know where my nerd ended up!).
  6. I can take the best bits of my corporate life, my love of creating visual communication and bundle it all into an exciting new future… helping people connect.

Its a new journey. I invite you to follow me and my journey to see how this next part of my business progresses. Remember to help a poor struggling uni student out and follow me on insta @trishandersonphotographyau!

I’m delighted to share this journey with you.

….But seriously though, what even is c++?

An evolving business: Images and communication to connect with your audience