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Hear straight from our graduates.

I took a huge risk leaving my permanent marketing position to study design, but can honestly say I’m super happy I started Shillington when I did.

Digital Designer, Qantas and Jetstar Hotels

Tahmena Lutfi

What were you up to before Shillington?

Prior to Shillington, I graduated from university with a double major in Public Relations and Journalism. After completing internships at a few different companies like French Connection Australia and Sportsgirl, I was working as a marketing assistant for a telecommunications company. 

Why did you decide to study design? And why Shillington?

I always knew I wanted to work in communications, but it wasn’t until I was working on marketing collateral with a graphic designer everyday in my previous role that I worked out it was visual communications that I was interested in. This designer was a graduate of Shillington from over 10 years ago, and to see them do what they loved each day was enough for me to want to find out more about Shillington’s course and what they could offer me. It was the accelerated course structure and this personal recommendation that helped me decide to apply for Shillington’s full time course. 

You’ve been working as a Digital Designer at Qantas and Jetstar Hotels for nearly a year. Tell us how you landed the job! 

After freelancing for a few months and keeping an eye out for design positions in Melbourne, I finally landed the role I was after. Having previously worked in a marketing role, I looked for positions where I was able to showcase my marketing and communication knowledge as well as my new design skills. I had marketing, social media and communications experience, and felt this shone throughout my portfolio with the roll out of projects I had completed at Shillington, and the way I presented them at interviews. It was important for me to be confident in what I presented, and after working so hard on each project at Shillington, I felt happy showcasing my portfolio.

Shillington has a strong emphasis on conceptual design thinking, and I believe this helped me talk through my designs with greater confidence, and even capture the attention of interviewers with the unique ideas and backstories I had come up with. I had run through the presentation of my portfolio several times before even my first proper interview, which meant I was able to talk about all aspects of the folio with no doubt in mind.

Anything else you’d like to share?

Just a bit of advice for anyone that’s interested in the course but is unsure whether to do it. Just put yourself out there! If you’ve always thought about design and it’s something you are genuinely interested in, then why wait? I took a huge risk leaving my permanent position, but can honestly say I’m super happy I started Shillington when I did.  It’s definitely a very challenging course to take on in 3 months, and you will need to stop everything else you’re doing and be happy to not sleep (much), but I can promise it will clarify your future. 

Visit Tahmena’s website and read her full interview on the blog.

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