Graduate Shawn Crowle
We caught up with Shawn a year after he graduated from his second program with CD-ED. Shawn has started a successful freelance business of his own. You can see some of his work at www.raytracedesigns.com.
- Q. What drew you to the programs at CD-ED?
- “Well, I was out of work and had a family to support. I knew I needed to go back to school but I had NO IDEA what I wanted to do...I had interests in art and music, writing, gaming, etc. and one day I happened to see a commercial for CD-ED and it all just kind of clicked.”
- Q. Why did you then decide to take a home-study college program from CD-ED?
- “Mainly the flexibility. I had a young child to take care of, and working from home was really the only way I would be able to make things work.”
- Q. Which part of the course was the most enjoyable?
- “I really enjoyed the pacing of the course. It seemed like I was always learning something new and exciting. I could notice my skills continually improving as the course went on, and I always felt like I was getting better.”
- Q. What was the highlight of the program for you?
- “There were way too many highlights to really remember. It usaully would inolve one of those 'AH HA!' moments when everything would just come together and click and all of a sudden you'd see a new way of doing things that you never would have imagined before.”
- Q. How was the instructor support during your program?
- “It was absolutely excellent! Not only were they always prompt to help, but they were just very supportive! I always felt like they really cared about how I was doing, not only with my work, but just generally, you know?”
- Q. How did you schedule your study time to work around your home life?
- “My work schedule was really all over the place. Whenever I had a spare moment, I'd run to the computer and get as much as I could done. My son would take a nap...run to the computer...etc.”
- Q. Once you found the time to study, how difficult was the actual material?
- “Despite a few challenging moments, I actually found the material to be relatively easy. I think it was organized in such a way that it was always building slightly on what had come before, so instead of having to suddenly learn a completely new concept, it was more of a nice, gentle expansion of knowledge.”
- Q. Who contributed the most support towards your completion of the program?
- “So many people! My wife was wonderful! Words can't even express the amount of support she gave! My parents were really good about taking my son for a weekend here and there if I really needed to buckle down. My instructors, Gayle and Evan, were very supportive!”
- Q. Are you employed?
- “I am! Well, sort of...I started my own, small freelance business.”
- Q. What is a typical day like for you at work? Is it what you expected?
- “Well, being freelance, I'm able to set my own hours and take as little or as much work as I feel like doing. Some days I'll spend a couple hours working, while others I'll sit down to a sixteen hour marathon.
It is a lot different than I expected. The range of different projects astounds me! I've worked on things I really never would have even imagined doing, which in a way is a good thing, as it forces me to create things I never would have on my own.”
- Q. What is the most predominant skill you use on the job that you acquired with your program?
- “I couldn't even begin to narrow it down to just one. Aside from the technical skills I learned (modelling, texturing, etc.), the time management skills have been indispensable.”
- Q. Do you enjoy working with the skills you learned at CD-ED?
- “I love it! I think one of the best things about 3D Modelling is that no matter what you're building, whether it's a simple lever or a crazy animation, the way you do it remains the same, so I'm never bored while I'm working on a project or wishing I was doing something else.”
- Q. Do you feel you were prepared for the job by your program at CD-ED?
- “I do, though nothing can really prepare you for those first few job experiences. There were definitely a few moments where I thought, 'What do you mean that's not what you're looking for?!?! It's so technically correct! I definitely would have gotten at least 90% in school...'
There are definitely some things that you can only learn by experience.”
On a Personal Note
- Q. Would you feel comfortable recommending CD-ED to a friend or co-worker?
- “Definitely! I really enjoyed my time with CD-ED and wouldn't hesitate to share the experience.”
- Q. Do you have any advice for students taking a program with CD-ED?
- “Don't get discouraged! There were definitely times where I was just completely overwhelmed with schoolwork, family, etc. but you just have to focus on the light at the end of the tunnel!
Talk to your instructors, get to know them a little! They're really a great bunch of people and are there to help.”
Check out Shawn's small business website at www.raytracedesigns.com