Brandon Yam Capstone

​For my capstone I decided to interview people in different professions in order to learn what they are like. Going in to college is scary enough, but declaring a major is even harder. I did not know what I wanted to major in and I still do not know what I want to do with my life. I wanted to create a guide for underclassmen that would give them a little insight into the professions that they are possibly looking into. Getting interviews with professions that are relevant today was hard. I could not secure interviews with people in high positions such as lawyers, but I was able to get lucky with a medical technician. A fair amount of my interviews had to deal with the arts which is not bad, but I do wish I had more variety. My partner (Jiwon Choi) and I worked on grabbing as many interviews as we can and we worked with what we had in the end. It was a tough process. There were a lot of emails and phone calls that went unanswered as well as time and effort. Unfortunately, I would not be able to set up an internship program with the individuals I met with (due to schedule conflicts and such). This is a setback for what I originally intended but I feel as though I needed more time/assistance to make it work. Despite the internship program, I am still very satisfied with my work. 


Cahill, Paula. “Being an Artist.” Personal interview. 03 Feb. 2016
    Paula Cahill, a local artist in northeast Philadelphia, brought the world of art up close and personal. Being an artist is not only her hobby, but her occupation as well. She makes money off of commission from her works and doesn’t plan on stopping. She displayed numerous amounts of her work, all varying in size, color, theme, and style. She states that being an artist is hard, but definitely do-able. Her last words were “If you love what you do, it’ll all work out.” Paula Cahill’s interview will be used to create her individual profile on the website. There will be an in-depth profile of her along with actual footage of the interview itself. 

De Selincourt, Basil. 1907. “The Ethics of Passion”. International Journal of Ethics 17 (2). University of Chicago Press: 181–94.
    Basil de Selincourt, an editor at the University of Chicago Press, wrote about the ethics of passion. Basil described the societal boundaries of passions and essentially, what was cut out to be a passion and what was not. Basil talks about how these societal norms is what limits people and if there is hope for a diverse future, people must venture further and test the “limits”. This will be used to create the description of the project itself on the website along with contributing to the foundation. This will be the underlying message before visiting the profiles of the interviewers. 

Gaskill, Monica. “Being a Researcher.” Personal interview. 18 Nov. 2015. 
    Monica Gaskill, a medical researcher at Abramson Research Center, gave an exclusive interview of her workspace and occupation. There were many machines and tools lying around, their purpose unknown until Monica explained. It was everything a person could expect it to look like documents, graphs, flasks, etc. She also gave an explanation on her current project with genes and her experiences in getting into the field. This source will be used as one of the many profiles created on the website. There will be a page for Monica individually explaining her occupation, answers to interview questions and gallery of pictures of workspace. 

Kelly, Darien. “Being a Musician.” Personal interview. 04 Feb. 2016 
    Darien Kelly. a freelance musician in central Philadelphia, takes music seriously. He takes on jobs from performances at local communities to performing with the Philadelphia orchestra. He composes his own music as well and is fluent in a variety of instruments ranging from the trumpet to tuba. He showcased his pieces with a sense of accomplishment. His most rewarding moment in his career as a musician thus far was when he traveled to Memphis and taught a group of kids. One of those kids wrote to him in an email months or years later expressing his/her gratitude and that they would be the first to attend college in their family and they wanted to pursue a degree in music education. This source will be used in creating Darien’s profile for the project. 

PALMER, GEORGE HERBERT. 1914. “WHAT IS A PROFESSION?”. The Journal of Education 80 (20 (2006)). Trustees of Boston University: 537–39.
    George Palmer, a member of the Trustees of Boston University, talks about professions and the best way for them to thrive. For instance, he talks about teachers and how their salaries are not cut out for their living expenses. With the anxiety of not being able to pay bills, the teacher brings that into the classroom, thus minimizing his or her potential in teaching. He explains that in order for one to maximize their potential to the fullest, they have to be free of stress and negative energy. He tells how it’s hard to go out and do what you want to do in life due to the unstableness of it all. This source will be used as ground knowledge to enhance the website. 

MACDOWELL, LAUREL SEFTON. 2001. Renegade Lawyer: The Life of J.L. Cohen. University of Toronto Press.
    Laurel Sefton Macdowell, the author of Renegade Lawyer: The Life of J.L. Cohen, talks about the life of an average lawyer back in the 1900s. Laurel gives insight of the workings, day to day life, troubles and upsides of the lawyer profession through the eyes of J.L. Cohen. Though not all lawyers have had the same experience as Mr. Cohen, the workload and procedures are no different. This source will be used to fill the space for the lawyer section since getting an interview with a lawyer could not be scheduled. This is not the only source being contributed to the section.  

McDonald, Steve, Nan Lin, and Dan Ao. 2009. “Networks of Opportunity: Gender, Race, and Job Leads”. Social Problems 56 (3). [Oxford University Press, Society for the Study of Social Problems]: 385–402. doi:10.1525/sp.2009.56.3.385.
    Steve McDonald, an editor for the Oxford University Press, Society for the Study of Social Problems, talks about a multitude of factors that affects your job and how you got there. He analyzes deeply into gender roles and race to grasp the essence of getting ahead in the field. McDonald reveals that white males have a significant lead in jobs as opposed to white women or even other minorities. It really makes one think about how this came to be.This source will be used in the closing statements of the website when addressing the issue of individuals being barred from their professions due to social problems such as this. 

MERCHANT, CAROLYN. 1918. “THE LURE OF OTHER PROFESSIONS”. The Journal of Education 87 (22 (2182)). Trustees of Boston University: 594–95.
    Carolyn Merchant, a member of the Trustees of Boston University, talks similarly about occupations that are stuck in time and are underpaid, just like George Palmer. Carolyn mentions that people such as merchants and middlemen live soundly because financially, they are better off than a teacher, butcher, or candlemaker. As people in these professions struggle to make ends meet, it makes the professions that have no problem meeting their bills that much more enticing. She tackles the idea that professions that help build nations are paid less than those who put bricks together. This source will be used to summarize the rise and fall (financially) of certain jobs. 

Ross, Edward Alsworth. 1916. “The Making of the Professions”. International Journal of Ethics 27 (1). University of Chicago Press: 67–81.
    Edward Ross, an editor at the University of Chicago Press, published a journal about “The Making of the Professions” where he explained exactly where these occupations stemmed from. He talks about the pathology, mentorship, and all of the inner workings of jobs in general. He even goes into the social aspects of jobs and how it can affect someone mentally and the world around them. This is a great source in building up the “base” to the capstone. It helps lay the foundation for the interviews to follow. With this text, it makes it easier to understand how others get into the professions they do along with the experiences and passion. 

Terkel, Studs. “Working” (1974)
    Steve Terkel takes career exploration to another level. He went out around the nation and interviewed people with different professions ranging from farmers to people in corporate America. Steve Terkel is certainly a jack-of-all-trades with this book. His interviews are very thorough and provide great insight to the lives of these people. The dialogue and writing has a sense of “rawness” to it as if the reader was right there. This source is great because this is what the project essentially is just in a different form. This will serve as the mentor text for future interviews to enhance the final product.