Yesterday a graduate student committed suicide during a professor’s office hours. That professor was Mookesh Patel, he was my professor during my undergraduate studies and is now considered a dear friend. I can not fathom going through or witnessing something like that and I want him to know that his students past and present are here for him as he has always been there for us. State Press Article.
I found out from one of my friends who I went through the program with and we started talking about the program and the stress that goes with it. Many don’t understand how the ASU Graphic Design program works, it is a hard, nose to the grindstone program that really bonds a class together. There is no just sitting in a lecture for 60 minutes and then taking a midterm and a final. You are in rigorous 3-4 hour classes making, building and exploring. Your first year it’s plaka and plaka and oh yea did I mention plaka . . . you will have nightmares about that stuff. There are insane deadlines and extremely high expectations, we are after all the best design program in the nation.
All this rounds out the year with an application to the professional program consisting of multiple tests and then onto the waiting game til July to see how many of the 200 get to be part of the lucky 30 to get in. After your first college summer, come the three professional years . . . and that is a novel in itself.
As challenging as the program is I wouldn’t trade my experiences there for anything, All the professors, Andy Weed, Mookesh and Al, Jennifer, Haywood and yes even Beth . . . are so true to the craft and the pursuance of making us the best we can be. That program really prepared me for graduate school and for real life in the advertising world. There was a stint of 4 months where I consistently worked 80 hour weeks just to make client deadlines. Yes, I have even slept in the agency.
Mookesh, I am really happy you are safe and hopefully can put this tragedy behind you to continue doing the great work you have done for so many over the years. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family during this trying time. You truly are a beacon of inspiration.