Road Trip Nation Process Paper


a)    Robin Gansle’s journey seems, to me, be one of uncertainty and confusion. Robin recognized what she was interested in, yet she could never quite pinpoint exactly what it was she wanted to do as a career. She changed her mind many times in college, and eventually decided that being and IT was not what she wanted to do with her life.  After dropping out of that field, Robin began working for American Airlines.  After 9/11, the airline business dropped drastically, and her and her husband decided to move to Seattle, Washington.  Robin really took on photography during the Seattle Sniping incident, when it was too dangerous to leave the household.  After having her first child, she began taking pictures of her children.  A hobby eventually turned into a career for Robin when she moved back to the DFW area, and created her own photography business.  After many trials, Robin was able to lease out her own studio, increasing her validity as a photographer, and helping her business take off.  She now resided in Denton, where she works all over the DFW area.

b)   College made a large impact on Robin’s decision to be a photographer, as well as the circumstances of society at the time.  She enjoyed photography, and knew that the major she chose was not the career path she wanted for the rest of her life. It was an easy and enjoyable hobby for her to pick up, and the resources she needed to educate herself were accessible. The internet showed her everything she needed to learn, and she found the right mentors that gave her all of the right feedback, making her very successful in her business.  Robin values work done well, and work done correctly.  She values her photos being edited with care and correct technique. She also values the ability to work well with her clients, and making connections. This impacted her career choice greatly, because she was able to continue to do what she genuinely enjoyed, while staying close to her home and family.

c)    Looking back on all of the interviews that our group conducted, we learned exactly how much time goes into each of the career paths.  From photographer, to Starbucks manager, to criminal justice lawyer, to gamer, each of these careers take so much time and dedication, on and off the clock. Our group was very surprised to hear some of these work hours, and even helped in our decision to choose our own career paths. We also learned the vitality in going down a path that you are incredibly passionate about.  If you are stuck doing a job that you have no love for, you will always be unhappy with what you are doing. Always go down the path that fits best for you, otherwise work will never be fulfilling or rewarding.

d)   One major theme that constantly stuck out to our group was passion.  As I previously stated, be passionate about whatever it is that you decide on as a career.  Otherwise you will never be happy, and the time you spend will be meaningless.  Another reoccurring theme that our group came across was to always keep growing. Always be working towards something, and to never stay stagnant.  While talking to Lauren, we learned exactly how hard she works to just keep moving towards her goal to become CEO of Starbucks.  She is constantly working up the ladder to become something better, and seeing that is so inspiring.

e)    What struck me about the differences between the interviewees was obviously, their different career paths, yet they all shared the same passion for their career.  Seeing how passionate each person was about their career was exciting to witness, and inspired me to want that same passion for whatever it is I choose. Each person had a completely different personality, accompanied by a completely different career.  As each of them shared their story with us, it was obvious of the excitement and love for what they do within their community, and how it affects others. It made us think about how we are really not so different from one another, and made us appreciate even the smallest of businesses in the community. It’s inspiring to see that spark in each of their eyes about the different roles they play in society, and I only hope to find that.

f)     From what I have learned during this whole process, I think I now have an overall better understanding on what exactly it is like to go down a path you love, and to go down a path that you chose because of a bad decision.  Personally, there is nothing that scares me more than being stuck down a path that I am not passionate about, or that my heart is not fully committed to.   Money is not always the answer to every career choice. If it comes with great pay, that is only a bonus.  You must enjoy what you do.  Robin is so enthusiastic about working with her clients, especially infants.  She loves the interaction between client and photographer, and the relationships she gains.  I admire Lauren’s love for growth, and constantly moving forwards.  My favorite piece of advice that was given to us by Lauren is, “Never stop growing, and never grow up.”  This was so refreshing to hear, because being stuck in a monotonous state of mind is a fear of mine.  Their words of wisdom impacted each of us, and will not be forgotten as we choose our own paths. 


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