My plan was to become a graphic designer when I grew up. I started in the Studio Art program at SCSU ready to lay the foundation for my future as an artist. Back then, graphic designers hand-rendered their work and I loved creating. I began taking classes in drawing, sculpture, and jewelry – designing and crafting with my hands. Year two into my studies, my dad gave me some sage advice. He said, ‘You know Dawn, computers are going to take over your industry and you will be sitting in front of a box all day.’To my dismay, I listened to my dad and changed my course load to Marketing. That was the last time I truly created with my hands.

After earning a BS in Business (with a Studio Art minor), I entered the workforce as a market research analyst. Flash forward 20 years, and an MBA later, I was doing well in my career but always felt like I was missing somethings. I was spending 10 hours a day in front of a computer – exactly what I did not want to do. On a whim, my sister asked me to join her at a lampworking class. I agreed, hesitantly, as I was so focused on my career and thought it would be a waste of time for the Type-A, instant gratification woman. Within minutes of this class I was a different person – feeling reborn again – I was creating with my hands! What an amazing feeling. This is what I was meant to do.