Interview: my unexpected career path

sam bradd ubc interview graphic facilitationI admit, being a graphic facilitator was an unexpected career path. And I’ve never been happier.

I’m often asked if I retrained at art school, but instead, I pursued a graduate degree in Educational Studies from the University of British Columbia. I was thrilled to be interviewed recently and offer career advice to new grads.

Read the interview here, and my favourite parts are below.

I want every grad to succeed, and “You’ll figure it out” is never helpful career advice. Now, when I talk to students (be they undergrad or graduate), my career advice is about how to be valued by your colleagues and team.

Be useful, do good work, and stay true to your values – this will help you find career happiness.


“If I was a new grad, don’t stress about where you’ll work. Put the effort into how you’ll work, instead. This is about understanding your personal strengths: do you prefer team-based projects, or more autonomy, for example? Understanding what are the factors that help you be authentic at work will help you find a rewarding career in perhaps an unlikely setting, and might help you say yes to something you hadn’t considered.”

I use my degree every day. “What I love about this career is that I’m learning something new every day – it’s an amazing way to continue my lifelong education. Graphic facilitation brings together two important parts of my life: working with groups and visual thinking, and it’s led to a creative, rewarding career.CEDOXltUIAAveqQ

“When people find out I draw professionally, people are always surprised I didn’t go to art school. Instead, doing a graduate degree in Educational Studies helped me engage in the inner work that makes me a better educator and facilitator.

“My degree was an opportunity to examine my role in reconciliation, social justice, and cultural safety, for example, which is crucial to my cross-cultural work.”

Basically, any chance you get to learn things, anywhere, take the opportunity.

You can read the full interview here:

Thanks to UBC and the Educational Studies department for a transformational learning experience, and good luck to all the grads of 2016!

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