At the end of the academic year, CCAD deans present the Outstanding Seniors for their divisions. Today, in part eight of our 10-part Outstanding Senior series, meet Interior Design major Sarah McCance.
Q) What was your proudest achievement while at CCAD?
A) I never pulled an all-nighter. That was one of my goals I set for myself. Everyone says how you will be up all night working on projects, and I remember I went and told Martha Allison [CCAD chair of Interior Design] at the very beginning, my freshman or sophomore year, that I was never going to pull an all-nighter and she just wished me luck, and I did it. I actually went and told her [Martha Allison] when I finally finished my thesis project.
Another proud moment was finding out about being chosen as an Outstanding Senior. I was not expecting it at all, but it was really icing on the cake. I had just been offered a job, finished my thesis, got engaged, and then they told me about this!
Q) What scared you the most while you were at CCAD?
A) The woodshop. As a freshman, I was cutting one of my 3D designs that had a really sharp edge with a band saw, which I later learned that you shouldn’t use for that type of cut. While I was cutting the blade snapped. Luckily I didn’t get hurt, but the noise and everything scared me. I am always scared to go in there now or use any power tools (laughs).
Q) What are your plans after graduation?
A) I got a job at Wilson Associates. I interned there the spring of my junior year and again this past summer. When I came back to CCAD [last fall] I emailed the architect that I worked with there monthly, and he would send me updates on the projects I worked on. He told me he would like me back after I graduated and sent me all the paperwork and everything, so I will be going back to Dallas when I graduate. I will be working with them on a contract basis and by the end of summer I will be on board full-time.
Q) What is your ultimate dream job or goal?
A) Working for Wilson Associates, so it’s great that I am already achieving that. Whenever you look at top-rated interior design firms, Wilson Associates is always at the top of the list.
Q) Why it is important as an alumna to continue to give back to CCAD?
A) I think it all goes back to wanting to duplicate your experience for the incoming students. I want to be able to keep in touch with faculty so I can, in turn, show students that it is possible to get a job and be successful after graduation. I also think alumni who live in the area should continue to visit the school, especially to offer their help with critiques and to speak with students.
Q) What smell, word, object or whatever will always remind you of your time at CCAD?
Q) What will you miss the most?
A) The Interior Design program and everyone in it. It’s a small, tight knit group of people. There are only 11 girls in my grade that are in the program, so we’re all close. I’ll remember us being in the computer lab until 4 a.m. working and listening to obnoxious music. One time we were so exhausted we got up and all did the Cha-Cha Slide. I think I will just miss that whole community and the closeness and support.
Q) Can you describe what graduating feels like in one word or sentence?
A) A relief, but also the cause of a lot of anxiety. I think it is a bunch of different emotions mixed together. We have been doing the same thing for the last four years, and now we are all moving onto something completely new, so it’s exciting and scary.
Q) What was your favorite class at CCAD?
History of Cinema. I was able to watch foreign movies, and it was nothing like any of my other Interior Design classes, so it was a nice break.
Q) What did you like to do during your free time?
A) I worked a lot. So when I wasn’t studying or working I liked to go to dinner with friends or have a night in with some girlfriends. We would go to one of our houses and watch a movie, cook dinner, drink wine. It was nice to just relax and do nothing since normally I am always busy.
Q) What is your fondest memory at CCAD?
A) Sophomore year, a couple close friends and I were all lying on this blanket studying for our history final. We were all so exhausted that we were hysterically laughing non-stop. I remember we thought everything was funny, and one of our teachers even brought us over a big bowl of M&Ms. It’s a great memory.
A) If you could, what would you change about your undergraduate career?
A) I would focus more during my junior year, I didn’t put 100% into a lot of the projects that I was working on, so I would go back and give those my full effort.
Q) What is your advice for future CCAD students?
A) I would tell them you’re an artist and a designer, and no one can take that away from you. They need to remember although there may be hard times, they are creatives, no matter what. I would also remind them to help out those who are younger than them. When I was a sophomore the seniors would help us out on projects that they did two years ago. I did the same my junior and senior years, andI think it is important to do that.
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