February 26, 2013

If You Want A Dream Job, You Have To Build It

Jaimie Gusman is an Author, Educator, and Founder of a local artist workshop series in Hawaii, Mixing Innovative Arts or M.I.A. for short. She is also an English and Poetry professor at the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Below, she explains how pursuing a childhood dream of becoming an educator has led her down an unexpected path of becoming a local community arts supporter and how her desire for literary culture led her to create her own enterprise that pays her bills:

When I moved to Hawai’i three years ago, fresh out of grad school, and into more grad school, all I wanted to do was submerge myself in the literary culture of the islands, maybe join a cohort of poets who write together late at night in dark coffee shops, stage collaborative performances, or at the very least attend poetry readings until my brain exploded into fragments of a villanelle. However, what I was looking for didn’t actually exist: no poets staying up at coffee shops editing their manuscripts, no creative writing collaboratives, and no monthly reading series to introduce me to the exciting literary culture I was seeking…

It’s the local community that inspires me to keep on with M.I.A. (three years going strong). I wanted to attend free artist workshops during the summer but I couldn’t find any, so I organized them through M.I.A. I wanted to hear what mainland artists and international writers were up to, so I brought them to Honolulu through M.I.A. I wanted to create a publication of work written by the fabulous M.I.A. performers, so I am editing an anthology. If you want something, you have to build it. But dreams change. Now I want to do what I love—which is to organize events, support local arts, and build communities—as a job that allows me to pay the rent…

With imagination and people who support your ideas, you can build anything.

Read Jaimie’s full blog post here, and learn more about her work as she continues to grow her nonprofit along with a new for-profit enterprise.

Are you ready to build the dream job you’ve always wanted?

[Image: Flickr user WoodleyWonderWorks]

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