What comes first, the job or the experience?

I am a graphic design graduate looking for work within my chosen discipline.

While scanning through the vacancies in all the design magazines and papers, I am puzzled by the advertisements seeking junior designers who have over two years experience.

Huh? I was under the impression that this position is for graduates like myself who need that first break in order to acquire the practical knowledge of the industry; not for those who have already gained this coveted experience.

What I also find disillusioning is how the majority of junior design positions prioritise the designer’s competence on the Apple Macintosh, rather than the quality of work that they may have in their portfolio.

Surely, at this stage in my career, good design intuition is more valuable than a working knowledge of QuarkXPress.

I am not a graduate with a chip on her shoulder, nor do I consider myself the next “big” designer, but I do feel that the five years that I spent studying design should count for something.

Estelle Baylis


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