Stumbled upon this blog entry by accident but it makes perfect sense.
Two things I want to add to this list… it’s important to get real world experience before you try going it on your own. I would recommend at least three years working for an agency, firm, etc.
Also, if you can get a variety of experience then that is better than just riding it out at one place. If you want to focus on print, make certain that at the very least you work closely with a printer.