Author Archives: clinkscalesj

Exploring City Tech’s Liberal Arts of the Arts and a Career in Acting

Jordan Clinkscales

Professor Ellis

ENG 1101

11 May 2015


Hi, my name is Jordan Clinkscales and I am a student at The New York City College Of Technology (City Tech). My major currently is Liberal Arts of the Arts, but I plan on transferring to a University when these two years are up to receive the Associate’s Degree. As, of right now I do not have a deciding college to transfer to, however, it will be out of state. The specific career I plan to have in the future is an acting career and surprisingly the Liberal Arts program gives me many options and many opportunities I can think of.

               “An associate in arts degree from the School of Liberal Arts and Arts is a stepping stone to further education.  It provides strong academic preparation emphasizing communication, and analytical and critical thinking skills.” (, 2015).  When applying to City Tech, my choice of major was Liberal Arts of the Arts. I chose this specific major because I knew I would be able to take many courses that would be the foundation of any career path I plan to take in the future. The study within the Liberal Arts provides the necessary skills any person would need in life. Analyzing is not only a skill but it creates a sense of generalization that oneself can relate to. “Critical Thinking is the mental process of analyzing or evaluating information. ‘To reason’ is the capacity for rational thought, or to think logically.” (, 2015).   I say without the use of logic the world we know now would be in utter chaos, meaning that hysteria would be at an all time high. There are many types of communication but it is a necessity. Communication is necessary only because without communication, a person wouldn’t be able to do most things and besides communication influences your thinking about yourself and others. The program here at City Tech provides the key components to at least having a future to look forward to.

The Liberal Arts program is very similar to Hospitality Management because it’s a major that’s rather broad and can land you in any field of work. The programs’ aspects are a stepping-stone to prepare you for the “real world” and higher education.

“A wide variety of careers are available to students who complete a Liberal Studies major. LIS graduates find entry into careers in business, government, and social service agencies like adult and family services, criminal justice, and health and welfare. Some Liberal Studies majors combine this study with teacher training programs at either the undergraduate or graduate level to become K-12 educators; others find this interdisciplinary major appropriate for graduate studies in law.” (, 2015).

Acting is the best career for me because I’ve always felt like I was only able to live a fast-paced lifestyle. The fast-paced lifestyle being just constant traveling, moving, jumping from scene to scene and having an increasingly tight schedule. Ever since I was young I’ve always had an interest in going into the entertainment field. There’s nothing wrong with having a regular “nine to five” job, but I knew for sure It wouldn’t be something fit for me. The art of acting is much harder than expected. When it comes to acting, it’s very hard and sort of stressful to be deemed as “Believable”, audience engaging and becoming his or hers character that they are portraying. Most people believe that it is a natural talent and that you need to have the gift of acting in order to act in TV or films or even commercial prints. According to Jason Bennett “It was once thought that the ingredients of amazing acting were inexplicable and could not be taught. But during the last 20 years, huge advances have been made in actor training and many of the ingredients are clear. If you find one of the rare great acting classes, you can cultivate many of these qualities in yourself with profound results. a free-flow of emotions and impulses expressed in the body and voice; an understanding of how to create life-and-death, moment-to-moment acting; a vivid imagination; and a body and voice capable of telling all kinds of stories.”(, 2015). It’s amazing how time has changed and people are able to take classes and develop acting skills. All it takes now is to have the determination, dedication and will power to be content with journey to success. As said before, about the skills that the Liberal Arts major develops helps because a lot of skills are needed in acting but to make it in the business side of acting, is where the development within the Liberal Arts program comes into play.


When I first broke out into the industry, I was graced and honored with a group interview with other amateur actors to meet with Beth Littleford, best known for her mom role as Ellen Jennings in the Disney sitcom “Dog With A Blog”. Basically she sat down with us and we were able to ask her questions about the industry. I was able to ask a couple of questions but one I really needed to be answered was “How does one become successful in acting”? She replied by saying, “It’s not really difficult to becoming a successful actor but key components is having a mind of your own, communication skills, creativity and a positive attitude.” To me I thought it was a bit cliché of her to answer the way she did, but It made me think that if it keeps repeating It must be true.

11245229_918039574926101_1929751412_n                                            11225989_918039598259432_1733422756_n

I would be great for this career because not only I’m extremely creative but I think rather quickly on my feet, especially under pressure. In acting, sometimes you’re obligated to use improv. Improv being “created and performed spontaneously or without preparation.” (www.Google,2015).  Thinking on my feet is something I have developed over the years. I started acting in plays in elementary school but it wasn’t until High School when i was asked to join Mock trial for not only my public speaking ability but for my experience in acting as well. A Mock Trial is an imitation of either a real trial or a trial that could possibly happen in the real world. It really depends on what trial you’re given. As portraying a plaintiff lawyer, I needed to be able to make objections and have a subtle but quick rebuttal to the opposing teams responses to objections as well. Being able to act has always been a dream of mine and I will do whatever it takes to make it in the profession. It’s great to take almost any opportunity out there that involves the chance to act, even if it’s a little bit. Developing the skills and making them perfect may take a while, however when you keep working at anything you’ll soon be not only happy but responsible for the outcome.

By attending The New York City College of Technology and taking up the program of Liberal Arts, I’m being prepared in many different ways and being provided with the necessary skills I’d need to have in life. There’s no guarantee on whether or not everyone can make their dream come true, but with the ability to gather the fundamentals first and begin a foundation to whatever career you choose to have in the future will be worthwhile. And at City Tech I am getting everything I need to begin.

Works Cited

Bennett, Jason. “The Ingredients of Great Acting.” The Ingredients of Great Acting. 2013. Web. 11 May 2015.

Brose, Chad. “University of Illinois Springfield.” What You Can Do With This Degree – Department of Liberal Studies. Web. 10 May 2015.

Hereford, Z. “Critical Thinking or To Reason.” Critical Thinking or To Reason. Web. 10 May 2015.

Littleford, Beth. Group/Personal Interview, 21 December 2013.


Writing My Brain by Jordan Clinkscales

  • Introduction

I feel like this project was intended for me to pay attention to my thoughts and why i’m having them. While in the process of completing this project, I was able to realize certain traits and thoughts that I really need to focus on. Most of the thoughts pertained to my future and career and I feel that; that’s what i need to focus on as of now! Actually being able to write down my thoughts has helped me look on what i’m doing as of now and what needs to change. The brain works in mysterious ways and it’s great poking it a couple of times just to get a bit more information.

  • Thinking In Writing

So planning my day of thoughts was the best thing for me because if it wasn’t planned it wouldn’t get done. After reviewing my day of thoughts i’ve noticed that i had normal teenager thoughts. Such as, my future and what i’d be doing in a couple of years, school and why it’s so time consuming and food. However, the only thought that continuously played through my head in the whole day was my future in acting and how soon i will be doing it professionally. I know it’s pretty cliche to have a thought such as this one but this is a thought i have everyday, numerous times a day and at every time of the day. My future is very important to me so it’s only fitting for me to make sure things begin now and as early as possible because i’ve witnessed many people have a passion for something but it became too late to get it and had no other choice but to settle and try to survive. I definitely don’t want that. I had basic normal thoughts about the steps i need to take in order to reach my “success” and be content with my life. Pretty horrible for me to plan my day of thoughts on a school day but for some reason, my school days are the days where the most thoughts come to me and makes the weekends happen for me. Throughout the day i was thinking about if i’ll get to class in time, why is class so long?, why is school is so time consuming? and whether or not homework would get done because of how tired i am. With the idea of writing my thoughts, it made me realize that i need to be more on top of things and keeping everything chronological and “tight”.

  • Thinking Visually

This photo represents my thinking because as a child, I always had a passion for acting and only seen myself doing that in future. So this photo was taken Broadway is the embodiment of Acting.
This photo represents my thinking because we know that Times Square is in Manhattan and when people see the big lights they think of New York…..”The Land Of Opportunity”. I believe that New York is the land of opportunity and anything can happen in the blink of an eye!
I took this photo especially because this is my neighborhood and where i was raised all eighteen years of my life. This photo was taken because i constantly think when i get around this area….”How am i going to get out of here and begin my future?” This is something I try my best to focus on for the future.
I thought i should take this photo because as of something I need to focus on in my future, I turn to billboards and ads as inspiration on…..”what steps, do i need to take in order to achieve my goal in the entertainment world!”
I decided to take another picture downtown but not necessarily for the billboards, but trying to take an overview of the people in Times Square. (Failed Job) However, i took this photo because everyday when i think about my future, i always think about what can make me different from the rest of people here, i go to school with, ride transportation with and even my loved ones. Although, I didn’t do a successful job on the picture, it was my vision to take the photo for that purpose.
So for this photo, i decided to take a picture of my tumblr because on tumblr we sorta appreciate other people such as, celebs, fashion icons, actors and basically those in entertainment. It may seem weird but i have sorta an obsession with hoping that one day my name could be a hashtag or a trending topic. Within my future I’m not obsessing over “fame” necessarily because with acting or anything within entertainment, once you become a common guy…”fame” comes with it. It’s just another motivator for me to reach my goal!

  • Thinking Reflectively

Whatever you do, do not stop! Everything leading to now is going to pay off in the next couple of years. Currently, you made your long life dream of becoming an actor a reality. It took many bumps and bruises, but you finally have your spotlight on your very own comedic sitcom. Remember that time when you wanted to quit because you met many scammers surrounding the entertainment world? Well, instead of hanging up the towel, you decided that this career was all you had and working a nine to five just wasn’t in your future. Now, because of your career and who you are; you’re able to not only gain the annual income you’ve always dreamt of, but also premiered on covers of magazines, walked red carpets and even became a guest on SNL and even Ellen. For lack of a better word, you made it! The only thing now is……..can the past me take the same direction?

Now, I know you’re pretty excited to hear about your future, but we need to focus on a couple of things first. One thing you’ve always had trouble with was arriving on time or early to anything. Whether, it’s school, an event, meetings or even an audition. You need to focus on arriving promptly, because being late does not bode well, especially with your career. Being late can cause serious damage in acting. Not only  time is money, literally, but no one wants to work with a person who thinks that his/her time if more special than others. Even if you don’t think your time is more important, that is how it will be perceived to colleagues. In other words, production would not take you serious and that annual income you love so much will drop tremendously. In all actuality, if you don’t change, you would never reach an income to make a living off of. Eventhough, your father has been telling you this since god knows when. It is your responsibility to begin now and get this act of being late removed. It was very hard to break at first but your career is far more important!

Unfortunately for you, with acting comes a lot of studying and practice. This for sure has always been another problem for you throughout all your years of education. Without having good study habits, it will be extremely hard for you in acting when it comes to memorizing your lines and making sure everything runs on schedule correctly. Yes, there are many takes if you slip up, but how many takes will you use before the director asks for another person to take your role, your job, and your money? This is why studying is key and with studying, if you slip there’s a chance you can remember the what should be said and improv! Improvisation skills is acting one on one, but you can’t count on that all the time because most writers hate when actors do that, unless it fits and the director approves. I suggest certain skills to develop a good study habit. A couple of steps recommended that you should take is definitely to avoid thinking negatively because your anxiety can go from one to three-thousand very quickly, always think positive and trust your first instinct, always study where there is a table because for some reason whether noise or no noise when there’s a table, your focus is amazing rather than on your lap and basically anywhere that has no table. Another step for you is to never have your cell phone, Mac, or Ipad near. You know yourself that you get easily distracted when that LED light flashes! As, a actor it’s such a benefit to have your alone time and your manager or assistant could hold your belongings and take your calls if necessary. When it comes to studying, the only thing that is crucial for you is to finish, with understanding the criteria and ready for anything. Last but not least, the step that is most crucial for you is to always communicate!! It is evident that you always communicate because you seem to always second guess yourself and if you don’t understand something you keep it to yourself instead of asking any questions. As an actor it’s pretty crucial as well to just give your manager and especially the director a heads up about how a certain line should be said or how you should be positioned in a certain scene. Rather go ahead and ask questions the just hear the word “cut!” numerous times because you can’t get it right! Studying is key and you may not see it now but eventually you’ll take heed in pursuing the art of studying.

I believe we have covered all the necessary focal points that leads to your prominent future. All except one. The final action that needs to be taken is your strong stance of always being honest. Being honest is an amazing trait for a person but too much honesty and brutal honesty and not taking a person’s feelings into consideration is a very bad thing. There’s ways of not lying and still being able to tell the truth, without hurting someone, but it all falls under how you word things and how a lot of those words are being delivered. This is also pivotal in acting because if you feel as though you don’t like how a line is worded  or don’t necessarily like the project itself, you can easily say “I don’t see myself as a good fit for this role” or “The script is amazing but I have one question about a certain line”. With just a couple of word changes you’re still able to be honest and spare the other person’s feelings without just saying “I don’t like it” or “This is terrible!” Being honest is a life lesson and overtime it will get really confusing because you may feel as though you’re lying even a little bit but overtime you’ll start to realize that it has benefits and less problems for you in the end. This is something that you can start working on now, however don’t feel rushed into learning it, but more so thinking about “How can I word this, so it doesn’t come off rude?” Key component in life that should always be taken into consideration. Less issues and more honesty that isn’t so blatant and disrespectful like.

It is very important that you take precaution on the road to your living in the future. Everything that is being done now will pay off on the way and can change your life drastically. By using a lot of these tips and probably more focus points that wasn’t mentioned could just be useful in life. You’re very adamant about your future and won’t let anyone knock you down or stop you from achieving in the entertainment industry. Everyone wants to be an entertainer but only a few excel and perfect their performance as they go on. And don’t worry about the negativity because it’s the exact thing that’ll give you that big push to pursue great things and live lavishly, whether it being wealthy or just having positive supporters, such as, family and friends in your life. Like I indicated in the beginning, whatever you do, do not stop! Everything leading to now is going to pay off in the next couple of years. Only you have the control of your future and not a single person can come between it!