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IHAVEANIDEA.ORG > ask jancy >  Go back to school, or try my luck making a portfolio?

Go back to school, or try my luck making a portfolio?


I am 24 and I have been working for three years in a web design agency. But as the years pass I have a great intereset in advertising, as I design some campaign web sites. I was studying at the University at Turkey but I quit in my second year. Now I’m searching for copywriting jobs, but all agencies are looking for Graduates. Now I’m 24 and if join a new university, I won’t graduate until I’m 28. Is it so necessary to graduate from a University to be a copywriter? I’d also have to spent at least $100.000 USD for that 4 year education. Is this not too much for a diploma? I will be pleased if you advise me on what to do: study University or prepare a portfolio and try to crash in a door of an agency ?
Thanks a lot.

intro Go back to school, or try my luck making a portfolio?We don’t know if you are still in Turkey or what programs are best in that country. But in researching schools and portfolio programs the best sign that it will be worth your time and money is to look at their student portfolios, and the backgrounds of the teaching staff. It should be self evident if the student work is strong, and also look at where graduates get jobs and how many of them get jobs. Teaching staff tends to be strongest where teachers are still working in the ad industry—so they are doing the work and in touch with rapidly evolving technology/trends.

You may be able to create a portfolio without getting an advertising degree or ad program education. If you’ve met a strong mentor who is a copywriter you could learn that way (we have an intern right now who did just that). But a great school can be worth your time and trouble. Don’t worry—you won’t be “too old” at 28 if you go for a 4 year degree.

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About Jancy

'Jancy' is Janet Kestin and Nancy Vonk, Co-Founders of Swim, a unique “creative leadership training lab for advertising creatives and marketers.” Prior to Swim, Jancy was globally renowned as the Co-Chief Creative Officers of Ogilvy & Mather Toronto, a position they held for thirteen of the twenty years they were a creative duo at the agency. Over the years they've racked up Cannes Lions, Clios, One Show pencils and CA credits, and have lead their shop to two Cannes Lions Grand Prix and a Grand Clio. They've judged CA, Cannes, D&AD, the One Show, the Clios and other prestigious award shows. Creativity named them two of the top 50 creative people of 2008. Known for their outspoken, no-bullshit style and a passion for mentoring juniors, they're ready to give you advice if you're ready to take it.

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