I get a question about doing a Masters degree in Creative Writing worth it? Is it worth doing a masters in Ireland vs. the US? And my thoughts on how employers view masters degrees not from stateside? Going to answer that now. Similar post here.
I avoided writing this because the last time I wrote a personal post about moving back, I got a lot of messages and telling me “it’ll be alright.” things you really don’t want to hear. But here it goes…
Doing your masters
I went and got my masters degree in Creative Writing from University College Cork. I knew I wanted a more independently, diverse, and no MFA for getting my masters degree. And the program at UCC was a perfect fit for me. I took a variety of classes that involved writing, from stories, food writing, script writing, more expressive writing, to radio writing. That’s my background in school.
A question I got is it worth it to do a masters in Ireland vs US?
Personally, yes if it was a program that was going to fit what I wanted. I didn’t want to go into a Masters where all I would be doing is writing a story, writing stories come naturally to me. I wanted to expand my writing away from Fiction and UCC was the best program.
Is it worth doing it in the sense of jobs, the future, the “after” part?
Being able to go to a world-class University in Ireland was an opportunity and an experience like no other. Little did I know how it wasn’t going to mean anything when coming stateside looking for a job. More on that further in the post.
Another question I have gotten that was “do you think employers view the masters degree there the same as one as the US?
Given that when I tell people I lived in Cork and they have no clue where that is, that might be a definite answer. UCC was a top college, was considered the best in the country, and in there ‘grading system’ I got a level 9 degree which is pretty high. But that might not “transfer” over stateside. Which is 100% frustrating because I thought going to get my Masters in Ireland and living in Ireland for two years will set me apart, it would show my skills and ability to adapt, open to learn and be independent. Further from the truth.
Overall, going to get my masters in creative writing I did not feel like it was a waste of my time. Unlike an old college adviser told to me (nice, right?), and I do not regret doing a masters in a different country I think it honestly was the best fit for me, it worked well, I learned so much not only in the program but outside the program. There are maybe’s that go through my head but you can’t change anything now can just move forward. I guess the one thing that was not only frustrating after doing my master was coming back and trying to find a job (if you haven’t figured that out). Which I am going to talk next.
Getting that job after College
Creative fields are usually unpaid, freelances, underappreciated work. Which makes finding a job, finding a position really difficult. Not only that but the process of getting a job is stressful.
The issue still is that you need experience but how you going to get that experience?
What about actually trying to land the job? You’re either too under qualify or to qualify. I’ve heard it before that my generation is “spoiled” we have it easy and we think we should have things handed things to us. Yes I do say to myself ‘this shouldn’t be happening to me, I shouldn’t be here, I got a feckin Masters for god sake.” But I think we can all agree to get a job is not easy despite that there are “jobs out there.”
Trying to land a position that will get you on the right track of progressing in a felid you like is hard. Yes, I know people who are doing jobs that they love and it isn’t in their background, good for them, but I haven’t yet.
The most frustrating thing about applying for jobs is that you need to just get a job. You start out looking for what you went to school for, but all that work, all that experience you did, even in your year off, in your master programs, doesn’t count. And it is not enough experience. Suddenly you are looking for a job to get a job because you have bills, you need to pay off your student loans, you have to feed yourself, and you would like to have a roof over your head. And you’re sitting there doing a job to pay the loans you took out for that degree, in a position that isn’t even your degree? You suddenly feel very lost and disappointing.
It is not easy trying to find a job. And the worst part not finding the position is what it does to you personally. You not only make yourself feel like crap but society, outside voices, make you feel like crap. Can people just shut up?!?
All you need is that one yes to you to get yourself going.
I avoided sharing this post because it’s not the “fluffy” truth. But the thing is when I hear people who are talking about there success like it was timing, they went through a lot of nos but not talking about those nos and what they did; only focusing on the success it doesn’t feel right. I want to know what they did when they got so many nos, what they did to keep themselves motivated and confident. Because those are what a lot of people need to hear sometimes.
So if you are thinking either going to go to school for a creative degree, in the processes of applying to jobs, or in the middle of trying to get that job and now at the point of you will take anything! I hope this post finds you something at least feel understood and that you aren’t the only one. But also go for that course you want to, follow your dreams, and do what you want! The most frustrating part when going through this was I couldn’t do what I wanted!
IF you want to know about study abroad here’s a blog post about that here.
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