Why You Should Volunteer: Test Drive Your Career

When I moved to San Diego from Houston, I thought that it would be easy to find a job as a video editor. I went through a lot of interviews, and they all seemed positive, but in the end, I got a whole lot of nothing.

That’s when I decided to try volunteering. With my background, the nonprofit I applied for was a perfect fit for me. They needed a video editor and someone to help with their broadcast.

Never too old to volunteer

When I first volunteered, I only thought kids did it. I mean, I remember I had to volunteer a lot in middle school and high school because I was in Honor Society, In college, my friends would intern and volunteer for college credit.

When I went to volunteer, there were a lot of college students, but there were a lot of older people who were passionate about their community. I was shocked at how many people were willing to volunteer their time. I had a lot of fun meeting new people.

Test Drive Your Career

This is the perfect way to get experience. Even though a lot of the equipment wasn’t up to industry standard, I learned a lot. When I first started, I didn’t know that much about youtube or twitter, but now it’s second nature.

I also learned different programs to live broadcast and got experience with the sound equipment. Working with a non-profit company you will definitely have to find creative ways to reach your goals, but that’s life.

Also, if you have your own equipment (I had all the Adobe Software) you get more experience using your own system.

For example, I filmed some interviews for a promotional video and afterward found out that there was a humming sound from all the computers surrounding us. I had to learn to eliminate all the noise on my own.

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Is this really what you want to do?

After volunteering, I realized I couldn’t be a video editor as a career. I would rather do it as a hobby. Because I’m responsible by nature, I would always get the work done in a timely matter.  BUT I had to force myself to do it.

Luckily this was around the time I finished getting my  IMCP certificate (which I learned about from volunteering) and decided to become a designer instead.

Have you tried volunteering? Tell me your stories in the comment below.

 

-Paigon | Natasha Lane Design Co.

 

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