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Stepping into self-employment is not as hard as you may think...

The graphic designer, Andrea Voß-Acker, never regretted the foundation of her own company

Her work place is an extended attic that is flooded with light in a new housing estate in Ronsdorf. Here, the graduate communication designer, Andrea Voß-Acker, sits every day at a modern, functional desk with her most important working tool, her Mac. Since 2001 she is self-employed. Her main focuses are in the print design of the visual communication. Besides brochures, magazines and books she also develops logos, corporate designs, posters and on behalf of the ministry of finance every now and then stamps, and this included everything from the development of a concept up to the grafical design, the draft, the layout and the finished print template.

From the industrial clerk to the neat student

But it was not clear from the start that she would go down this path. "Before my studies, I already finished two apprenticeships", said the trained industrial clerk and adds, "but I didn't want to do this for the rest of my life!" She wanted to be creative and since back then she missed her A-levels, she combined it with an apprenticeship as a design technology assistant for media and communication. After an internship in an advertisement agency it is clear: "Yes, this is what I want to do. And I want to do it in Wuppertal." Voß-Acker applies at the University of Wuppertal, is offered an university place and starts her studies. "In the beginning when I was studying, I drew a lot, I started with illustrations and photography and then later switched to typography and layout." Similiar to many other fellow students, she developed her main focus in the course of the semesters. In the main study program, as she had to conduct real projects, she pursued visual communication. "The conceptual and the complexe design was more my thing", she remembers. "I studied quiet long and extensively in order to use the variety of offers of the study program. During this time, I had the possibility to do whatever I was interested in, what I liked doing and what brought me further. Especially real projects - which were often advertised as competitions - are a good opportunity to prepare for the time after the studies." In this time she implemented a big advertisement campaign together with a fellow student for the bizeps-project (start-up consultancy service of the University of Wuppertal) and participates in three stamp competitions and wins one of them.

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