Brandon William Romain

Interview by Andrew Dzwonczyk

You work two jobs, meanwhile you are partaking in an internship and going to school full time. What are those jobs and internship?

“I do a fully remote internship with They sell tickets for concerts, plays and sporting events. I basically just run all their social media accounts from Instagram to Facebook to Twitter. I have a 9a.m.-5p.m. job in Yonkers working for Sound Associates. I do everything from loading trucks to maintaining and processing consoles, speaker cables and speaker units themselves. It’s manual labor. My second job is mostly freelance. It’s a position as a photographer and cinematographer with a film company called Meca Talent Agency in Co-Op City. I didn’t want to do all this at the same time. It kind of just happened that way. Though, I did want a second job because I was making $11.00 an hour at Sound Associates, that’s part- time wages. I was only working there three days not coming out of with a lot so that’s why I decided to get a second job and I just needed an internship in order to graduate. It was out of necessity more than being an overachiever.”

PHOTO CREDIT: Andrew Dzwonczyk

How do you handle all this responsibility? Are you stressed?

“Hell yeah I get stressed. In terms of handling the stress or responsibility, I make a to-do list of things that need to get done. For two-thirds of my schedule I get paid for it. If I let it fall through the cracks I don’t get to eat and I don’t like asking people for money. It’s mostly about staying on top of it. It’s about sticking to the study skills that I’ve ignored in the past 12 years of schooling.”

Do you manage to still have a social life?

“I do, but usually my social life doesn’t begin until the evening. Though, with how unpredictable my work schedule is, having a social life is just another thing I have to do. In this position, if it’s between hanging out or going to sleep, I choose to go to sleep. If your friends are really your friends they’ll understand how tired you are.”

Have any of your professor’s given you advice about your routine?

“Just that if it’s between work and school, you pay to be here and with work you get paid, they would say come here. That’s the only advice, while it is correct, at the same time, the owners of the company where I work have said that I don’t need an education to do what they do. So, in my case, I look at school where I am doing this for a sheet of paper that will tell employers they can hire me for $80,000 a year and up.”

Could you give any advice to people who go to school and work a job on how they can handle stress?

“Don’t forget the simple things. When I say simple things, I mean the things you find personal enjoyment in, even if it’s not with somebody. The way I look at it, everything is scheduled. You have your work, class, internship, and social life. Your social life, whether you like to say it or not, is a part of your work life. If hanging out with your friends is what you want to do, do it. Or if reading a book and falling asleep is how you need to spend your time so that you feel good waking up the next morning, do it. You never know when your next break is going to be. I’m lucky if I have four hours to myself one day. As long as you’re a little selfish with your time, whoever needs to hang out with you, they’ll hang out with you when you have time. They’ll wait.”