May 13, 2021
Like many high schoolers, I didn’t have everything figured out when I applied to college. I had no clue what I wanted to study or the career I wanted to pursue, so I chose to attend a university that was close to home and selected a major from the short list of degree programs. Before I even set foot on the Texas A&M University Galveston Campus, I had every intention of transferring after my freshman year because I believed I needed to obtain a degree in the field I intended to pursue in my career. Besides, what was I supposed to do with a degree in Marine Biology? Little did I know that a small, marine-based campus would provide me numerous opportunities to grow—and help others grow as well.
Once I changed my mindset from “I’m getting out of here as fast as I can” to “I’m going to take advantage of every opportunity that comes my way while I’m here,” I realized my potential for making a positive impact on campus, and I decided to stay. I became involved with several clubs and organizations and began to meet people from around the world. After a year of becoming more comfortable with life on campus, I applied for and got a job as an editor and writing tutor in the Writing Lab. Though I still didn’t have any clue as to what my future would hold at this point, I discovered my passion for helping people while utilizing my editing and writing skills.
From there, I took advantage of every opportunity I could while on campus to further develop my skills and guide others in their writing. When I had this realization, one of the first things I did was add an English minor to my degree plan because I was determined to learn as much as I could about English writing to arm myself with the knowledge that I needed to help others. After two years as a writing tutor, I was promoted to manage and represent the Writing Lab, where I held meetings with the other writing tutors to share my knowledge and experience. Shortly after my promotion, I founded an organization, where I invited international students to work with me on their English writing and communication in the hopes of not only improving their English but also making them feel more comfortable while in a new country. None of these experiences or opportunities were given to me, as I had to seek them out and/or create them in order to grow, which prepared me for life after college.
Upon graduation, after months of job searching, I decided to give freelancing a try, so I entered the freelance world as Whitty Editing, not knowing where it would take me. I enjoyed the work I did and the people I met, but I had my doubts about making a career out of freelancing, so much so that I found a full-time job as an editor after only a year of freelancing. Our society likes to stigmatize the gig economy, and I fell victim, sacrificing my mental health and relationships in the process. However, I knew that I would feel much happier and healthier working for myself from home while meeting and working with people from around the world, so I decided to go for it once again, and I’m thrilled to tell you that I’ll never look back.
I launched my freelance career on Upwork and now offer my editing and writing services on Fiverr as well, and I’m looking forward to joining other freelance sites. I also recently began promoting my services via Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter. While I still might not have everything figured out or have all of the answers, I consider this a success story because of how far I’ve come. Though I wasn’t super thrilled at first about the future that I unknowingly and randomly planned for myself when I was 17, I discovered my passions while in college and created my own path as a freelancer.
Alex Whitmarsh, of Whitty Editing, is a freelance editor and writer with a Bachelor of Science in Marine Biology and minor in English from Texas A&M University Galveston Campus. In 2018, her love for editing and passion for helping people led her to the world of freelancing. Aside from freelancing, Alex has many other important jobs: being a dog mom to Milo, a plant mom to many plants, and an aunt to her nephew and niece. She also enjoys mystery novels, true crime podcasts, and repeatedly watching The Office and Schitt’s Creek—which she incorporates into her writing samples and social media posts.