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Cliff Jumping

Andrew Krysinski (Creative Brand Management, 2023)

Have you ever been cliff jumping before?

Scaling rocks up to the top of a peak, holding on for dear life until you reach the top.

Slowly shuffling your feet to take a look over the edge, staring down hundreds of feet at the still water below.

Heart racing, chest pounding, thoughts running, palms sweating as you contemplate “what the hell am I doing?”

And then with all of the fear and anxiety pent up inside, you kinda just say “f*ck it.”

You take a few steps back, take a deep inhale, sprint to the edge, push off that rock, and hope for the best.

That’s how I’d describe my journey to the VCU Brandcenter.

To be completely honest, I don’t know how I ended up at the Brandcenter. Coming out of undergrad, I was feeling lost and unsure what to do with my life. What I DID know, though, was that I was looking for a way to grow, evolve, and level up. So, I applied to the Brandcenter at the last minute on a bit of a whim. I had heard about the program before and did some digging beforehand, but, just like jumping off of that cliff, I kinda just winged it.

When I got accepted, I was super pumped and still wasn’t quite sure what I was getting myself into. I went in with an open mind and, honestly, zero expectations.

After being in the program for almost two years now, I’ve had some time to reflect on my time at the Brandcenter. All I can say is that I am really glad I took that leap of faith.

Looking back, I’m now living a life that I once imagined—one that once seemed far-fetched. I’ve stepped into a new era of life that makes me really excited to explore new creative opportunities every single day.

Personally, I’ve grown so much throughout this process and have gained a ton of confidence: in myself, in my relationships, and in my work. I recognize, now more than ever, the value that sharing my unique point of view has on others and on the world.

I’ve had the pleasure of knowing and working with so many amazing, talented, and kind people. Everyone—from the professors to the staff and to my peers—is eager to pitch in and help each other out without question. The #BrandFam really does come together as a community to share valuable knowledge and experiences selflessly.

So many great things have come from my time in the program.

Without the Brandcenter, I might still be stuck standing on the top of that cliff.


Andrew Kry