a failure resume
reflecting on my not-so-successful ventures
hello new nuggets! 🐔
I’m starting my first blog post with a failure resume, the opposite of a normal resume.
Lately I’ve been feeling a lot of imposter syndrome, especially while I’m filling in large gaps of knowledge in this period of time after my internship ended and before classes start. I’ve been told that people feel intimidated by what I’ve done (rip my naive LinkedIn addiction phase from last spring), so I thought this would be a great way to shatter that belief and showcase my ~curvy~ trajectory while also reflecting on some of the failures that came along with my journey.
🎵 “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger” — Kelly Clarkson
failure resume 📝
Missed my Microsoft PM interview because I added it to 1) the wrong day and 2) the wrong time zone, also realized a full day afterward and moved another meeting just to realize this
Got rejected from Dorm Room Funds as a Venture Partner
Maybe student VCs really aren’t for me
Got rejected from Contrary as a Venture Partner
Took a leave of absence 4 weeks into the fall semester because I just couldn’t deal with how useless my classes felt anymore
Transferred my major for the second time and struggled to make friends
Got rejected from being a CS TA for the second and third time
I really thought I’d have a good chance after teaching Python courses for iD Tech Camps. However, I hadn’t taken a CS class for a semester and had already left iD Tech for a couple months forgot how to solve basic Python problems so struggled in the interview and it was really embarrassing :(
Got rejected by Reboot’s fellowship
But got to join the Discord to meet so so many cool people! Easily one of the best decisions of the year.
Dropped 3 out of 6 classes due to burnout
Took the lightest load of classes possible. I finished a design studio class halfway, but it really lost all meaning and it was hard for me to dedicate time to it when I knew it wasn’t teaching me what I wanted to learn.
Resigned from teaching Photoshop classes due to increased workload
This was a really difficult decision because I had a lot of long-term clients that I’ve gotten pretty far with and it was sad for me to leave and find them an alternative instructor. I also missed the students that I taught, they were all super sweet and following their Photoshop trajectory was super rewarding — maybe will one day create a Skillshare series to continue sharing some Photoshop magic ✨
Turned down my offer to join CMU HCII REU as a game programmer for the summer and regretted it
I took an internship instead because I wanted to experience industry. My biggest takeaway was that I really felt trapped in the really corporate environment where I wasn’t able to explore new tools/softwares very easily due to restrictions. Will probably go for research/startup instead next summer.
Turned down Civic Digital Fellowship after interview to take State Farm
Left a project in Augmented Perception Lab from being too overwhelmed by Unity
This was the third time I resigned from working on a project in a lab… but I later realized it was still valuable to learn from others in the lab while floating around and shadowing different projects and being active in participating in reading groups.
Shipped gaming PC twice cross-country and damaged it
I shipped it in a beanbag box and there was a hole in the box when it arrived… I also used my clothes and plushies as packaging material so it was my fault (yay save $$$)
Reached out to high school acquaintances I’ve wanted to catch up with and was ghosted by half of them
I actually used a cold-email template and it worked pretty well — I inspired several of my friends to do the same and we all had super nice catch-up sessions with people we’d wished we talked to in high school. Was fun to catch up with people who were around and agreed to meetup!
Turned down my internship extension offer to focus more on own projects
I thought about this long and hard and it was difficult because I got the chance to meet part of my team in-person visiting the headquarters and it was a really rewarding experience — also really love my manager. However, ultimately decided I needed a breather before the semester started to focus on myself.
Had trips to New Orleans, Philadelphia, and Austin cancelled because of COVID :(
Got rejected from being a CS TA
This really hurt because I wanted to get some experience teaching, as explaining concepts really helps me understand them more.
Got rejected from being an HCI additional major and design minor
I reapplied this year and got in both of them!
Dropped a discrete math course because I understood nothing
This was also at 6am PST and I absorbed nothing at that hour
Got rejected State Farm’s final round interview for UX design internship
I later reapplied for a different position and got it, but honestly both would’ve been too corporate of a role for me
Discontinued a psychology research project mid-way when I saw another research assistant join
It was the perfect opportunity to leave, also realized I didn’t really like pure psychology research because it felt too trivial.
Worked for a startup as the only designer and struggled a lot with advocating for design to the completely engineer-centric team
They handed me a large Sketch file and used me as a graphic designer to improve visuals and “fix” the UX after the fact.
Got a 0% on my last calc exam because my graphing calculator was in radians
Got rejected from my dream interdisciplinary program at USC
Wrote a piece on this recently
Got super close to finishing Udacity’s Deep Learning Nanodegree course and dropped it because couldn’t figure out the final project
It was still really helpful in getting an early understanding of machine learning statistical ideas and has been good to have in the back of my mind when talking about AI and its implications.
Organized a trip to China for my non-profit and struggled to raise money
Dropped AP Computer Science A class halfway because my dad mansplained me into thinking I was inadequate & this traumatized from doing anything involving coding until college
It wasn’t until I took an intro Python class my freshman year with Professor Kelly Rivers that really solidified my path to wanting to give it another shot.
This was a really helpful personal reflection exercise, and I would highly recommend trying it out! Thanks for following my journey, and stay tuned for more 🌱
what i’ve been up to: ✨
just published article on design ethics for Design Buddies!! read it here.
learning bruno simon’s three.js course
editing my long-overdue vlogs from seattle/pittsburgh/phoenix
settling in back in pittsburgh and dealing with lots of rain (and unfortunately wasting half my airbnb because my subletters moved out early oof)
planning for a design workshop on portfolios that I’m hosting on september 25th (stay tuned!)
remaking my portfolio because my notion redirect is dying