Chelsea & The City: Goodbye college, hello New York City

I’m Chelsea and I love ampersands. Really, really love them.

I’m from a small town in Idaho, love snow more than anything in the world and some days miss seeing mountains on the horizon.

I love to travel and I love typography.

Five weeks from Saturday I am graduating college. How in the world did that happen? I feel like last week I was sitting in my very first graphics class, scared to death to open InDesign or Illustrator and being lectured about my poor kerning and tracking skills. Luckily, I overcame that fear and learned about typefaces really fast. On December 15 I will be handed a diploma from Ball State University, which will finally justify every late night spent on homework over the past three and a half years.

During the summer of 2010, after just completing my freshman year, The Staten Island Advance took a chance on me that changed my life. They hired a 19 year old art intern with barely any experience except a few black and white inside pages from the Ball State Daily News in her portfolio. I still don’t know why they did it, but I have them to thank for the rest of my life. That one little door opened an entire new world for me. That summer made me realize what I wanted and what I needed to do to accomplish it. I wanted to come back to New York City, even if it meant pulling regular all nighters for the rest of my college career and forgoing the typical college social life to get there.

And somehow, for the second time, I got that opportunity.

I designed this page during my internship at the Wall Street Journal. (Click for a larger version.)

In 2011, I had the incredible experience to intern at the Wall Street Journal and last summer I worked with the Chicago Tribune creating graphics for the London Olympics. I have been beyond blessed with all of these incredible opportunities and sometimes I still cannot believe all of the opportunities I have been given. I am so thankful.

At Ball State, I am extremely involved with student media and spend way too many hours each week worrying about how colors are going to print in the next issue of our magazine. BUT, the good news is, that has all paid off.

I was just hired as a freelancer for TIME Magazine in New York City starting January 3, 2013. I could not be more excited – this is a complete dream come true! Now that I have the “getting a job” part of becoming an adult done, I still need to get the “finding a place to live” and “figuring out how to move and start a life” parts accomplished.

To be honest, I’m a little nervous and could use your help!

As I begin this journey as a blogger for SND, I hope that we can get to know each other a little bit. I may be graduating from college, but that doesn’t mean I have to stop learning! Instead of learning in the classroom, I hope to learn from professionals who have experienced things that maybe I haven’t. I’m sure I’ll have questions, and I hope this can be a place where I can have them answered.

So, if anyone has any advice on moving to New York and getting settled there, I would be so thankful!

—Chelsea

(Chelsea Kardokus is a senior journalism graphics major at Ball State University. See more of her work here.)