on getting into central saint martins
if you’re just here for my clickbait title. I’m sorry. this is actually not a step by step for getting into the best fashion university in the world. this is just my story.
CSM has been my dream school ever since I can remember. did I ever think I would study there? absofuckinglutely not. up until my first year of my BA degree in berlin, I actually thought I would end up in advertising. that was always my plan. I was always passionate about fashion (passion and fashion combined in one sentence actually hurts my soul it's so cringy I KNOW), but never thought it would turn into more than just a hobby. believe it or not, what drove me into fashion was the growth of my instagram channel. I hit the first 10k “milestone” in 2014 and suddenly pr agencies started to reach out to me to represent their clients. I absolutely loved working with the agencies and thought pr would be the field for me. despite everyone around me telling me that the pr world is the actual devil, I moved to new york in 2015 for 7 months to intern at one of the best fashion pr agencies out there. it was very the-devil-wears-prada-esque, I had the best summer of my life, but eventually came to the realisation that I didn’t want to be a pr slave either. the salary I would've gotten with just my BA degree in NYC was absolutely miserable. I moved back to berlin, finished my media & communication BA and started looking into MA programs. mainly because I wasn’t ready for the real world, but also because I just didn’t think my academic education is where I wanted it to be in order to find my dream job (and actually be qualified to do it). Parsons in NYC was just ridiculously overpriced and just in general didn’t seem like the uni for me. I looked at programs in milan and paris… and every time I googled “fashion communication MA”, central saint martins would pop up. I tried to ignore it as long as I could, mainly because I just had the feeling I would never get in, but at some point gave in and ended up on the csm website. there it was. the perfect MA program. tickets still available for the open day one week away. I was in the middle of writing my BA thesis and had absolutely NO time to go to london for a weekend. I could potentially risk my BA thesis grade for a uni that would I would never get in anyways. not really sure what I was thinking, I booked the next easy jet flights to london and pressured my best friend to do the same, just for moral support.
I actually remember pretty much nothing from the open day. I was so nervous, I’m not sure what exactly I talked about with my potential professor. I remember being incredibly intimidated by him as he seemed to have very little interest in me. I remember him saying that they’ve never accepted a german into the program, and even though my spoken english seemed good enough, I would have to take several language tests in order to prove my written english as well. he gave me his business card and told me to send over my CV in case I applied. we took a tour through the incredible csm building and after I left the uni it was very hard to not admit to myself just how badly I wanted to get in. I flew back home and drafted the perfect, emotional e-mail to the professor with my CV attached.
10 days later, I still hadn't heard back from him. I only told a few of my friends that I wanted to apply, just because I didn’t want everyone to know in the very likely case that I wouldn't get in. so I chose to not really talk about it. when my parents asked how the process was going, I pretended that I had changed my mind and that maybe csm wasn’t for me after all. I couldn’t believe that he didn’t even reply. how arrogant. my ego was shattered. should I reach out again? I really didn’t want to. why did I even think I had the slightest chance? all of the other students at the open day had studied in fashion schools or were already working for magazines. a few more days go by and my friend told me to send another e-mail. he couldn't just not reply. so I gathered up all of my courage and wrote a “just wondered if you received my e-mail” - e-mail. and got a reply about 5 minutes later. my heart stopped.
I sent him my CV, we arranged a skype interview. he accepted me into the course even before he saw the results of my language tests or my BA certificates. and now I’m here.