Monday, April 13, 2009

Turning Dreams into Reality...

Mr. Right and I had an interesting conversation yesterday. A conversation that we have kinda sorta had every once in awhile over the last few years.

Out of the blue, Husband will ask "Why don't you make websites for a living?"

Way back when (around 1995, at the ripe old age of 12) I made my very first website. I signed up on Angelfire (hey - it was free) and researched the bare bones of HTML. I had no purpose... I just LOVED the internet. My father had purchased our second computer (a Hewlett Packard Pavillion) and the whole house was swept up in madness. I, forever designing and redesigning sweet little websites at geocities and tripod, and reading source code of everyone elses websites to try and understand how they made theirs look so good. Its really silly, but my favorite website was called, and it seemed like the coolest place every for a tween to be. As it turns out, it was a website sponsored by Tampax, lol. Go figure.

Anyway, in one way or another, I've had a website for a very long time. While Josh and I were still dating, but not yet married, I PURCHASED my very first domain and hosting package through siteflip. I used it for hosting pictures and music and also began exploring all the various blogging programs (wordpress, typepad) as well as Content Management Systems (CMS) like PHPNuke, Joomla, etc. After awhile I decided to move in a new direction and registered I wanted to maintain a website or blog about me, my family, and politics. Some where along the line life got the best of me, and I opted to just use a free service (Blogger) and forgot all about

I forgot about it, that is, until Mr. Right brought it up. "Why don't you design websites for a living?"

I had no answer for him. Why don't I? Why didn't I? Why did I waste 4 years of my life getting a degree that was not pertinent to my passions in life. Why did I then pursue a Masters Degree? All I have now (career wise) is a pretty typical office job with no chance of promotion since not only is my company not really hiring, but trimming back.

I've always been a digi-junkie. I love digital photography, making websites, blogging and reading others blogs. So, Husband's question really hit home with me. Why not? I asked what he thought I might need to do in order to get the ball rolling? He suggested UAT (University of Advanced Technology) and a couple of people I could talk to that work in the field. So, as it turns out, UAT offers a four year program (a bachelors degree) in Web and Social Media Technology. Duh. Where the heck was this place in 2001?

Anyway - the wheels in my brain have started turning. I don't know if I have the heart to go back to school. Yet, at the same time, I have a feeling that I would love every minute of the subject matter at hand. I was stressed out trying to balance work and school and my husband before - and how on earth will I be able to balance all of that PLUS my sweet baby? Part of me wishes I could just read up on everything, learn it all on my own and go into business for myself that way. Do I really need a degree to have a career in web design and development?

I'm also worried that the field might already be too saturated with these folks. Is the pool really deep enough for another web design fish?

Husband told me to request information, go speak with advisors, and once I had the information then we could make a decision together.

What do you all think?