Talie’s 10x10x10 Story: Journey of a Broke, Wandering College Grad

Imagine…just kidding, you don’t have to imagine anything.

This is a story all about how my life got flipped, turned upside down…by Library For All. (For those of you who were born after 1996, that was a reference to the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air theme song).

I went through a quarter life crisis this past year (my senior year at university). I didn’t know what I wanted in life, what my purpose was, why things exist. I didn’t know what the appeal in Investment Banking or Computer Science was all about and I envied my friends who did- let’s just say the college career fair in September gave me more anxiety than open doors. I dreaded the thought of applying and possibly attending Law school, a prospect that I was vehemently passionate about since my first grade teacher told my parents I was argumentative but I instead took it as a compliment (and I don’t think she’d appreciate the run-on or redundancy either).

3 career aptitude tests, 4 career advisors, 6 full-priced career guide books and 50 emails to prospective employees later, I still couldn’t “find myself.” This was frustrating. Especially for those who had to be around me.

Well I guess I shouldn’t be that pessimistic. I did figure out a few things. I wanted to work with people and for people. I wanted to make people happy. But what really is “making people happy”? That sounds so vague, so cliché. I knew there were so many ways to get involved and so many job descriptions that could be twisted to look like they make people happy (yes, even investment banking). I was stuck. Despite the options, I felt overwhelmed and couldn’t put myself out there. It felt disingenuous arbitrarily applying to every job posting on Cornell’s career website.

By graduation, I had a few opportunities floating around but didn’t feel truly connected to any one of them. So I decided to just go with the flow and see where life would lead me.

Then life led me to Library For All. The day after I arrived home from college, my best friend, Isabel, asked me to help her out with an event she was running. I didn’t think twice about it and showed up at Soho House NYC ready to get my hands dirty. I was assigned to man the check-in desk (so much for the dirty hands!) and greet the guests into the Library For All Founder’s Reception. I was in awe as I watched Tanyella and Isabel tell us about Library For All. Not only was the cause itself so intriguing, but the individuals on the team were all so determined, so passionate about this digital library, so freaking inspirational!

I soon discovered what this buzz was all about. Within 3 days, I hopped on the LFA bandwagon. We’re on the road to changing lives. You just wait and see.