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Q&A with Paige Steuber

A conversation with Paige Steuber, who graduates in May 2024 with a bachelor’s degree in communication design and a second major in computer science.

How is college different than you expected?
College seemed way more serious before I got here. It’s serious, sure, but not in that scary, intimidating way I thought it would be. Instead, it’s this supportive environment where you’re pushed to be your best self, always striving for growth and excellence. I also expected it to be really easy to make it to 9 a.m. classes. It’s not. Don’t even get me started on the 8:30 a.m.’s…

Image courtesy Paige Steuber.

What are some of the biggest life lessons you learned in your time here?
I remember coming in with this nagging feeling that maybe they’d made a mistake letting me into WashU, let alone the Sam Fox School. But as I got into my foundation classes, something just clicked. I realized there had to be a reason I was there, and I wasn’t about to let a little fear hold me back from learning from some incredible faculty and grabbing every opportunity thrown my way. It was definitely a “fake it till you make it” moment that actually worked.

How has your creative work changed from four years ago?
Four years ago, I approached art tentatively. There was a fear of pushing anything I made past technically “done.” But early on in my first year, I had a professor go “Are you stopping here? Why?” and I realized I didn’t have a very good answer — “I think it looks good enough?” Long story short, I decided to take another stab at that project. After this, I made it my mission to try to see things with a broader scope and take more risks with what I am creating, and I feel this has reflected strongly in my work.


Image courtesy Paige Steuber.


Image courtesy Paige Steuber.

Img 4038 paiges

Image courtesy Paige Steuber.

What’s something new you tried?
One of my favorite classes ever was the printmaking elective with Tom Reed. Before this class, the idea of printmaking was extremely intimidating — have you seen those presses? Scary. But as I got into it and explored this way of making, I found it to be very enjoyable. I loved the connection I had with every aspect of my work and the results from time invested. And I mean time — I spent many hours in the print shop, but it’s a cool place so it was pretty fun.

Ten years from now, what do you think you’ll remember most fondly about WashU?
In 10 years, I believe I will look back on the late nights in the studio fondly. While currently, these sessions may feel taxing and exhausting, I think after 10 years and some reflection, those nights of creation and collaboration with my peers will hold a special place in my heart. Sure, I’ve seen the school after dark way too many times. But getting everyone’s opinion on my project so I can approach it with a new perspective? Ordering food and ranting with my friends as a break? The satisfaction when the printers finally work and the energy drink buzz wears off? Priceless.