Now thinking I studied the wrong subject, considering going back to education

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indyjspengler
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So very recently I've started thinking that I appear to be stuck in a dead end at the moment and I'm really considering what my near future will look like.

Quick background - I'm currently 24 (almost 25), I have A-levels in photography and film, a BTEC in Media Production, and I graduated university four years ago with a BA(Hons) Film Production and Cinematography with every intention of then working in the film industry or becoming a photographer. I spent the first year out of uni unemployed before I finally got a job at a supermarket. Three years on, I'm still there and I feel stuck.

I haven't been able to get any form of work in the film industry and my photography isn't getting much recognition so I've been unable to make a career out of it. I don't regret studying film production at all but I've reached the point of thinking that perhaps it was a mistake.

Now I'm considering perhaps heading all the way back to college to study something completely different to what I've already studied. I've taken interest in a Wildlife Conservation Diploma but there are other potential courses as well.

Just wondering if anyone else has ever done this? Gone to uni, graduated, and then went back to do a lower qualification? Would me having a degree affect studying at college again? I'm just looking for a bit of advice at the moment before I really look into this.

PS I'm assuming that as a mature student I would need to pay for the college course?
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999tigger
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(Original post by indyjspengler)
So very recently I've started thinking that I appear to be stuck in a dead end at the moment and I'm really considering what my near future will look like.

Quick background - I'm currently 24 (almost 25), I have A-levels in photography and film, a BTEC in Media Production, and I graduated university four years ago with a BA(Hons) Film Production and Cinematography with every intention of then working in the film industry or becoming a photographer. I spent the first year out of uni unemployed before I finally got a job at a supermarket. Three years on, I'm still there and I feel stuck.

I haven't been able to get any form of work in the film industry and my photography isn't getting much recognition so I've been unable to make a career out of it. I don't regret studying film production at all but I've reached the point of thinking that perhaps it was a mistake.

Now I'm considering perhaps heading all the way back to college to study something completely different to what I've already studied. I've taken interest in a Wildlife Conservation Diploma but there are other potential courses as well.

Just wondering if anyone else has ever done this? Gone to uni, graduated, and then went back to do a lower qualification? Would me having a degree affect studying at college again? I'm just looking for a bit of advice at the moment before I really look into this.

PS I'm assuming that as a mature student I would need to pay for the college course?
yes. am not sure advanced learner loans are available if you have a degree so check.

Tbh it sounds a bit left field.

Surely with film you would have id'd and targeted anywhere you could get a foot in the door and onto a film set? Id be loathed to give it up especially if I had a good degree.. You could also get a master loan? Seems like you need some serious careers advice and to get out of a rut.
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indyjspengler
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(Original post by 999tigger)
yes. am not sure advanced learner loans are available if you have a degree so check.

Tbh it sounds a bit left field.

Surely with film you would have id'd and targeted anywhere you could get a foot in the door and onto a film set? Id be loathed to give it up especially if I had a good degree.. You could also get a master loan? Seems like you need some serious careers advice and to get out of a rut.
I'd applied for a few film jobs before I left uni but no one got back to me. Had to move back home where there's not much in the way of filming and I can't afford to move anywhere where there are places I could go to work at the moment. I've considered a Masters at a top film school but, again, I don't have the money to cover it or living costs.

Stuck in a rut is definitely one way of putting it. I'm just not sure what else to do really
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999tigger
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(Original post by indyjspengler)
I'd applied for a few film jobs before I left uni but no one got back to me. Had to move back home where there's not much in the way of filming and I can't afford to move anywhere where there are places I could go to work at the moment. I've considered a Masters at a top film school but, again, I don't have the money to cover it or living costs.

Stuck in a rut is definitely one way of putting it. I'm just not sure what else to do really
PQ knows a lot about these sorts of courses. I tend not to chase hopeless causes, but I also dont give up. If its what you really want to do then you need a mentor and fully check you are making enough effort.

There was a great thread last night of someone who was nearly homeless and was sleeping at the gym. After much hardship and perseverance they got a graduate job at a good salary. They kept going.

If you are doing a min wage job, then see if you can do another. save the money and use that as a fighting fund. Look and get checked, every aspect of your search. Join professional organisations and see if you can get a mentor.
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username3079870
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(Original post by indyjspengler)
So very recently I've started thinking that I appear to be stuck in a dead end at the moment and I'm really considering what my near future will look like.

Quick background - I'm currently 24 (almost 25), I have A-levels in photography and film, a BTEC in Media Production, and I graduated university four years ago with a BA(Hons) Film Production and Cinematography with every intention of then working in the film industry or becoming a photographer. I spent the first year out of uni unemployed before I finally got a job at a supermarket. Three years on, I'm still there and I feel stuck.

I haven't been able to get any form of work in the film industry and my photography isn't getting much recognition so I've been unable to make a career out of it. I don't regret studying film production at all but I've reached the point of thinking that perhaps it was a mistake.

Now I'm considering perhaps heading all the way back to college to study something completely different to what I've already studied. I've taken interest in a Wildlife Conservation Diploma but there are other potential courses as well.

Just wondering if anyone else has ever done this? Gone to uni, graduated, and then went back to do a lower qualification? Would me having a degree affect studying at college again? I'm just looking for a bit of advice at the moment before I really look into this.

PS I'm assuming that as a mature student I would need to pay for the college course?
The other half graduated with a Fine Arts degree specialising in Craftwork. She's ran a really successful business for herself. I've helped her of course as I have some skills with web design and Digital marketing. What I've found with people who've done creative degrees like you have:

1) They normally have to make their own opportunities. The other half is really entrepreneurial so it comes naturally to her but she still works hard to get herself out there and make opportunities for herself. Most people in the creative sector she knows have their own businesses.

2) The skills you lack I'd say are likely business/marketing skills. They can help your business grow.

Now, your current employer might have a scheme that allows you to learn business or marketing skills or will pay for those sorts of courses. They aren't as dry as they sound. What you could do is develop those skills with a view to getting better at promoting your own photography.

I don't know if you've joined amateur film clubs but that's also a good way to get experience and build a portfolio.
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Mair18919
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Have you considered doing weddings?
You don't have to do boring conventional pics, try to make it real art.
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mafk80
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This is what one of my professor´s told me when I told him that I wanted to change my career path:


Count yourself among the fortunate ones that have found a meaningful purpose to exist. Most people live their lives in clockwork, not spending a moment to question why they are doing what they are doing and where it is taking them.

So my advice is, go for it and do not think twice about it. It is better to pursue something that you like rather than get stuck in clockwork doing something that you don’t.

I spent 3 years getting my Bachelors, 1 year on a Masters degree, 4 years on a PhD, plus 7 years pursuing academic research. At 37, I have decided that I want to study Medicine without a doubt in my mind. So here I am, taking A-level exams with 17/18 year olds. Does it matter though? Not to me personally, simply because I am too focused on achieving my goals.

If you want to change your direction, the first step is to eliminate any doubts that might hold you back. Don't care about what people tell you, just focus on what you want. Once you have taken care of this, the next step is to find out what you need to do and make it happen.

I remember starting with a to-do list and then one-by-one, I ticked off the items.

I'm now 1 step away from getting a place in medical school. I'm sure you can do the same, whatever it is that you will ultimately choose to do.
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Mahavir
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You've been working in a supermarket after a degree in Film. Where do you honestly think you'll end up after doing a degree in Wildlife Conservation? If you want to help animals, go volunteer in Africa but please don't contribute to an already burgeoning education bubble.
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indyjspengler
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(Original post by Mahavir)
You've been working in a supermarket after a degree in Film. Where do you honestly think you'll end up after doing a degree in Wildlife Conservation? If you want to help animals, go volunteer in Africa but please don't contribute to an already burgeoning education bubble.
It was only something I found after an incredibly quick search through my local colleges. There's courses in Zoology, vet nursing, etc. which could get me work in zoos, conservation parks, or vet practices. I've considered the volunteering but, once again, it requires a lot of money which I don't have.
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indyjspengler
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Thank you, everyone. I think I have a few choices at the moment. Either go back and send more applications off for jobs in film or try to get a photography business off the ground. If that fails then perhaps changing course completely could be the way to go.

It's something I need to seriously dwell on, I know that much.....
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chazwomaq
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This is going to sound harsh, but you sound a bit naive when it comes to careers.

(Original post by indyjspengler)
I graduated university four years ago with a BA(Hons) Film Production and Cinematography with every intention of then working in the film industry or becoming a photographer
...
There's courses in Zoology...which could get me work in zoos, conservation parks
These degrees are not highly employable and these careers are extraordinarily competitive. Even if your degree is from Oxbridge, the chances are you won't pursue a career in that field.

The exception you mention is vet nursing. This is more vocational and there are at least jobs in this field.

Don't make an expensive mistake twice by pursuing unrealistic dreams.
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mafk80
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(Original post by indyjspengler)
Thank you, everyone. I think I have a few choices at the moment. Either go back and send more applications off for jobs in film or try to get a photography business off the ground. If that fails then perhaps changing course completely could be the way to go.

It's something I need to seriously dwell on, I know that much.....
Good luck with whatever you decide to do; just remember what I said about not caring about what others tell you. You’re the best person to decide what is best for your future. If it feels right and you are determined enough to pursue it, then you’re already well on your way towards making it materialise.
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Mahavir
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(Original post by indyjspengler)
It was only something I found after an incredibly quick search through my local colleges. There's courses in Zoology, vet nursing, etc. which could get me work in zoos, conservation parks, or vet practices. I've considered the volunteering but, once again, it requires a lot of money which I don't have.
You could also work in a zoo by simply applying and getting in touch. Most local sanctuaries would be more than willing to take on free help. Start there, get experience under your belt, and then apply to the 'big' guys.
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