Aloha! Hope you’ve been having a stellar week. I certainly have. And I’ll have more exciting announcements with Media Talks very soon. In the meantime I thought as we warm up to the event we should get to know our panel more. And get to know you. Today we’ll start light with the question, “What were you doing when you were 16″?
The idea came from my mate Sandi Sieger. She’s the head honcho and editor of the excellent site www.onyamagazine.com.au. Sandi is actually someone I did know at 16, even earlier – we were in the same year in high school. She hit me and the Media Talks panelists with a list of questions and you’ll see all their answers in full tomorrow. I liked the question of what were you doing when you were 16. Some had a fair idea as to what they wanted to do when they were older, others just living in the moment.
Q&A WITH SANDI SIEGER, DIRECTOR & EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, ONYA MAGAZINE
SANDI: What were you doing when you were 16?
FAUSTINA: It would have been a year following my trip around the world with my family and having visited Ghana for the first time (I’m half Ghanian but didn’t connect with the African side of my heritage up until that point) my perspective on life changed completely and I was instantly grateful for everything I had in my life in suburban Melbourne. I knew from then that anything that I wanted to bring into my life was possible.
My grades picked up. I would have been loving studying Geography more than ever. I kept lots of old habits – I was listening to commercial radio and watching a lot of music TV and was really into the “Fresh Prince of Bel Air” and “The Secret World of Alex Mack”. I would have gone to my first rock gig – the Chili Peppers.
I loved helping out the local St. Vincent De Paul charity shop, attended the Edmund Rice Leadership Camp to help kids in need and felt so revived from the experience, I knew that giving back was important. My health was improving at lightening speed – I had chronic asthma and eczema that I tackled with Eastern Medicine – to the point that I could join my school’s track team (yay to less Ventolin!). I was a late bloomer in school. Life was rapidly changing, and for the better.
At 16, I was like any other teenager, except that I actually enjoyed high school! I was an unusual hybrid of super geek (and proud!) as well as a mild sportsman. I wanted time to slow down and speed up at the same time– I was eager to see what life would bring after high school, yet I was anxious about it at the same time and didn’t want high school to end. I was slowly figuring out what I wanted to study at university: I was able to rule out anything involving maths and sciences, as envious as I was of people who excelled in those areas, and I knew that my strengths lay in the written and spoken word. Now, where to channel those skills…
[At 16 I was] in Year 11 in Perth, loving writing, loving English Lit, keeping an angst-ridden journal, wishing I was a back-up singer on tour with my favourite band
Pearl Jam, and making some very bad fashion choices. I knew I wanted to be a journo so I was also looking into which uni course was the best, and working towards getting a TEE (VCE) score to ensure I got in.
Hmmm, I was living in the country on a subsistence-living farm with my four siblings (the fifth was yet to be born). I was frustrated as all hell, wanting to do more, bored by school, by people my own age, unable to leave the goat farm on weekends. Halfway through my seventeenth year, the family went broke and we moved into town and I started modeling that year and was working three jobs. I loved working.
The year was 1988 and I was in year 11 at High School and studying hard (when I wasn’t playing Tennis).
I had orange hair, big gold rim glasses and didn’t know how to talk to girls. I was definitely a nerd.
I had always had entrepreneurial dreams since being a child (when I was a kid I always had a little business selling something to classmates or neighbors) and so was working towards studying Marketing at RMIT after I finished school.
I had also recently saved up and bought myself my first SLR camera and was spending every cent I had buying film and paying for processing while I practiced my photography.
Aside from partying, exploring courses and work experience to help me get on my career path
OVER TO YOU…
So what were you doing when you were 16? Some people reading this may not even been 16 yet. If so, what are you doing now and where do you think you’re headed?