by Guiovanna Hernandez
Patricia Vining, known as Ms. Vining is the design teacher at Samueli Academy High School for sophomores and seniors and this is her first year here.
She was born on September 17, 1952, in Rockville Centre, New York. Ms. Vining has two daughters named Amanda and Jenna and a grandson named Charlie. Her favorite thing to do is to travel. Some of the many places she has been to include Canada, Mexico, England, France, Spain, Italy, Czech Republic, Greece, Austria, Germany, Turkey, Japan, Africa, New Zealand and Australia. The things that she hates the most is prejudice, judgment, and willful ignorance. She would like to learn Japanese and illustrate comics for her language program, Phoenix Comic. She has gone to school in different places such as New York, Louisiana, California and Europe.
Being a designer wasn’t her first choice but she ended up loving what she does.
“ I think I have been working towards this my whole life. When I was a child, I wanted to be a fashion designer. I was obsessed with paper dolls and would collect sewing pattern books and draw fashion for hours. I also began to sew and made all of my doll’s clothes. As I got older, I made my own clothes—imagine that! I even made my own winter formal dress. I wanted to study fashion, but my parents would not allow it—they did not think it was a real career, so I got my first degree in education. When my children went off to school, I got a second B.A. (4 years) in graphic design and an MFA in design (2 years) as it was required for teaching at the university level”, said Ms. Vining.
“It happened organically . . . I finished my design degree and the university asked if I would come back and teach a design class. I had been an elementary school teacher in my “first life” and I loved teaching, so I continued to do it while working full time at my design firm.”
Ms. Vining just like others goes through tough problems. Something that she experienced was, “ 2014 was a very rough year. I lost almost everything I had and had to start over. One day I had an epiphany, “When you lose everything—you have nothing left to lose.” I learned that money and “things” do not make you happy. I realized that I could go anywhere—reinvent myself. But after many souls searching, I decided I wanted to be ME —the real me, and that I wanted to do something of value. I know a lot of people my age who have all of these regrets—I did not want to be one of those people. I actually applied for this job 3½ years ago but I needed full-time work and that was not available at the time. I fell in love with the students, the culture and the passion at Samueli—and that was when it was a few temporary buildings in a field!”, she said.
Some of the education that she has are “ B.A. in Education, a B.A. in Graphic Design & amp; an MFA in Graphic Design. I have also participated in the School of Visual Arts Masters program in Venice & Rome, Type Camp Bauhaus in Germany, and the Legacy of Letters in Italy.”
Some the things that she is looking forward is “ Seeing all of you (and my grandson, Charlie) do the amazing things you are meant to do!!!” and “ Partnerships with universities; a Design Advisory Council; an accredited college course on campus; and hopefully, some sort of international exchange—the sky's the limit!” After a long day of work, she likes to run on the beach listening to her latest book on tape and drinking wine, watching the sunset with her fiancé Toby. During her spare time, she loves what she does so she always has a creative project to work on and right now she is working on the Phoenix Comic. She also loves to run, read and travel. What she loves about traveling is experiencing new places and cultures. The most annoying habit that she has is twirling her hair.
Editor Board, 2017-2018
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