Technology is changing the future every passing year. However, while improving technology may be beneficial for those with engineering or programming experience, it may leave other people without jobs. This erratic shift in work may lead students, particularly in creative careers, to consider what kind of work they may find in the technological future.
Jared Benson, an expert on digital typography and design, spoke to fine arts students about the need for creators in the modern job market. He poses that innovation is not only a useful thing but is absolutely necessary in order for businesses to expand and grow with the times and for modern technology to begin being developed.
“So much of the world celebrates the left brain,” Benson said. “Many success models lean that way. In reality, the right brain is so fundamentally important to being successful. As adults, we tend to lose the spark of creativity a bit.”
Benson said that when he was at BYU 20 years ago, the internet was just surfacing as a form of common communication. Looking at the world today, he says that it is safe to think technology is going to expand at an exponential rate.
“The rate of change we face is happening faster than ever,” Benson said. “The foundations you are doing in school right now will apply to fields, jobs, and products that don’t exist yet. The future, like creativity, follows non-linear paths, and we need people who can think big.”
Most importantly, Benson said that it is important to be creative because it can be the “best job in the world” if you find something to innovate.
“My dad taught me, ‘If you’re not having fun, you’re doing it wrong,'” Benson said. “I appreciate the work ethic he gave me to pursue a job that I love. Make sure you are doing something that you love.”
Some fine arts students said they appreciated what he had to say. Erin Ladd, a graphic design major, said she appreciated Benson’s thoughts surrounding the future and trying to do what might be considered unconventional.
“I liked how we aren’t predicting the future, but we are shaping it,” Ladd said. “You don’t have to feel limited by your field in the moment, but you can try and do new things always.”
Jessica Whitten, an illustrations major at BYU who attended Benson’s address, said she has thought about the importance of creative, right-brain thinking for future job opportunities.
“In my classes, we talk about creativity as a way to solve problems,” Whitten said. “You can bring a different perspective to the table in professional settings. There are so many new jobs appearing which need creative thought.”