So I know its Real…

16 Jan

I’m gonna do this like ripping off a band-aid…I DROPPED OUT OF LAW SCHOOL. Whooo! What a relief! For those of you who have been following the blog for the past two years have seen me transition from being a full-time budding designer to a law student and have been there for each and every difficult moment of the decision-making process. Law school is on average 6 semesters and 3 semesters in I decided it wasn’t for me. I think part of me has always known it wasn’t for me but at the time I felt like I had no other options. Pursuing the arts as a full-time career is a scary thing… a scary scary scary thing. In January 2010 I knew what I wanted to do and be but I just didn’t know how. Well now I do…You’ve got to step out on faith; that’s it and that’s all.

Let me take you back to my frame of mind when I decided to leave school. It was October 2011 and here I was in my second year of law school. My first semester had gone pretty well but my second semester, when I participated in the Fashion Law Fashion Show, went very bad. I’m talking all Bs in the Fall and Cs and Ds in the Spring. By that summer I was off to Ghana to study law but I ended up buying fabric to work on a new collection. Now its Fall 2011 and I’m riding the high of the Howard Homecoming Fashion Show with an 8 page paper due that I just can’t complete. 8 pages! You do 8 pages in middle school and here I am in law school with a 8 page paper due on a topic of my choice and I can’t do it. That’s the first step to knowing something is not for you; when the most minuscule task seems impossible for you to complete.

While I sat in the library an hour before the paper was due, trying to write something…I just felt like I heard a word; a word from God. This wasn’t a Moses burning bush moment but I believe in my heart of hearts that I heard a voice tell me to get up and go. So that day, October 31st, 2011, I went to the Dean’s office and withdrew from school. It felt amazing; so amazing. I felt relieved. I felt like I could finally be the person I was born to be . I could finally be the person God created me to be. At law school I wasn’t a contributor. I was a taker. I was taking financial aid, taking up a spot, and taking up the time of those who were there to provide me with an education. I believe God gives us gifts so we can contribute to mankind and I was finally ready to use mine.

I decided November 1st, 2011 was going to be the first day of my new life, and it was. From that day I started applying for entry-level fashion jobs in New York. I had my first interview exactly one week later and between November 8th and December 16th I averaged about 2 interviews a week. That’s when I knew this was real. I think back to before I started designing, when I was laid off from my publishing job. Here I was with a degree in journalism, almost 2 years post-graduate professional work experience, and for 9 months not only was I unemployed but I didn’t secure one interview. I wanted to blame to on the economy but I saw the same pattern in law school. After your first year of law school most students participate in OCI (On Campus Interviews). This process is to secure a job for the following summer and works by you putting in a bid to interview with a firm or corporation. Based on your grades, extracurriculars, and whatever else the firm/corporation will decide to interview you or not. I don’t know how many bids I put in, but not once did I get an interview. But in fashion I was getting interviews left and right. Lets be clear, these were all for entry-level jobs and internships but nonetheless I felt wanted. Someone wanted me to contribute.

On December 19th I moved to New York and started work as the unpaid men’s wholesale intern at a major retailer. Some days I feel like I gave up so much for so little; my one bedroom on Capitol Hill for a four bedroom in Harlem with three roommates and the security of law school for an unpaid gig but I don’t believe any of this has been or will be for not. I don’t even see law school as a waste; both fashion shows I did came as a result of me being a law student and my trip to Ghana came through a law school program.

Now as I look for a part time job, to pay the rent, and work to be a shining star at my internship, I know everything will work out fine. Why? Because I am finally becoming the person I was born to become.


6 Responses to “So I know its Real…”

  1. Tiffany C January 16, 2012 at 11:18 am #

    I am so happy for you. This will help many students.

  2. Rachel Huggins January 16, 2012 at 12:40 pm #

    Love your boldness and your guts! You got this…

  3. Courtney B January 17, 2012 at 12:47 am #

    So proud of you. This is just the beginning and can’t wait to see what’s next!!!

  4. Michelle Gibson January 22, 2012 at 12:39 pm #

    This was so inspiring, and I’m glad you’re following your dreams!! I wish you the best!!!

  5. Victoria | Haute January 23, 2012 at 5:39 pm #

    Great job Nichole!!! I bet it was a really hard/scary decision to make, but following your passion is the way to go! You’ve always had an eye for fashion, so I’m glad you’re pursuing it as your career!

  6. Catherine March 7, 2012 at 11:53 am #

    Hey, I’m a friend of Bata’s. We’ve met on a couple of occasions of you recall (short, light brown with long hair). Don’t feel bad if you don’t remember though. Anyway, I’m so happy for you! And proud. You took a huge leap of faith and that’s very admirable. I pray for your success.

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