Tag Archives: graduation

Life After College – Thoughts

college at stocksnap.io

College is a bubble. So, what happens after graduation? Well, that bubble bursts. Suddenly, that protected world that you’ve known for four years is no longer there. You are suddenly tossed out into the real world.

Twice in my life, I left college. And twice in my life, I was no longer in that college bubble, forced to live on the outside with no communal showers and surrounded by a random assortment of kids. But most importantly of all, both times, I was forced to face the reality of student loans, getting a job and adjusting to life after school.

Having been part of the thousands of kids who go to college right after high school, it is hard to envision a life in which the world of academia does not exist. I’ve been in school for nearly my entire life. However much I might complain about the unfairness of grading and classes and professors, at the end of the day, it is undeniable that I start to miss it.

I miss taking classes that may or may not have anything to do with my degree. I’ve taken Greek Mythology and Writing Poems even though I am not a Classical Studies or Creative Writing major. I’ve taken so many German courses that I’d like to say that I’m nearly fluent. I simply took those classes because I wanted to. College presented an opportunity to take those classes that my high school might not have offered due to limited budgets. And, I admit, once I got to college, I embraced it.

The same goes for extracurricular activities. At college, I could join the Yearbook Club or the LGBTQ club or whatever. At college, I could take  or do whatever I wanted to (as long as it was legal, of course). Indeed, what separates college from high school is the freedom to choose. The freedom to be independent. But, of course, with that freedom comes a certain responsibility. That responsibility is our first foray into adulthood. Some of us embrace it. While for the rest of us, it might take awhile…

But however long it takes, we all grow up in college. College is designed to test us. To test our strengths and weaknesses. To connect us with new people. To allow us to grow in a way that we never conceived of in high school.

But sooner than you think, college is soon over. You put on your graduation cap and gown and walk across that stage to get your diploma. But just because you receive your diploma does not mean that the growth has to stop. Instead, use college as a starting off point to continue learning and growing.

Getting your college diploma signifies that you accomplished four years of college education. It signifies that you have the discipline to study with no immediate gratification. After all, there is no guarantee that a college degree will get you rich.

But once you get your college diploma, you discover that the real work is yet to begin. You have to find a job. Hopefully, you find a lucrative opportunity in your industry. Hopefully, you will rise up within your company in the next ten years and become an industry thought leader.

Or, you might end up working as a barista at Starbucks or retail clerk for a few years working minimum wage, while relentlessly filling out job applications. You might have to work two jobs just to pay your rent, car payments and student loan payments.

But eventually, you will launch your career. It’s not going to be easy. I daresay that it might even be hard. But who said that life is easy? And those four years of all-nighters at college will be worth it.

But until then, we hope. Whatever we majored in, whatever experiences we had in college, we are all driven by the same ambition: to find a well-paying job and be a worthwhile member of this complex and intricate society.

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“Oops, I did it again”

I have a bad habit. I start a blog, post several posts in the beginning and then I stop. I stop.

Why do I do that?

Because this blog was once so new and exciting. It was like a shiny new toy. I was like an excited child on her first day of school after a long summer. I relished in the title, the URL, my followers, the WordPress community. I loved everything about this blog… until one day I didn’t.

But there’s another issue here. The reason why I stopped posting was because I had nothing new to post. I can’t write about how I wake up, brush my teeth, get dressed, check my email, go to work, come home, do schoolwork, brush my teeth, go to bed and then start the whole process all over again. That would get boring.

Face it. As humans, we all live boring, incredibly mundane lives. We do the same things all over again. For many of us, we don’t have a choice. Bills need to get paid. We need to eat.

But there’s another thing. I’m almost done with college. I’m currently taking my last course. I’m applying to jobs like crazy hoping to find something that I will love. I have faith that I will find something. I know that I did not go to college for a total of five years since I was eighteen for nothing. College is an investment and I am determined to make sure that it was a good one for me.

This blog was born after I took a Social Media class at SNHU. I wanted to write about the college life. Books. And what it means to be an untraditional online student who started out college traditionally living in the dorms.

But now that I am almost done with my undergraduate education, I am changing. My life is changing. Something happened to me. I am terrified at the thought of the unknown. But I have hope.

Stay tuned for a new post. (I promise you won’t see another “oops I did it again” post from me).

And the title is a tribute to Brittany Spears. My childhood… oh, the nostalgia!

Life Lessons

I am 26 years old and I go to college online. Going for my Bachelor’s degree has been a long, emotional, often treacherous journey and I am excited that it is coming to an end soon. Right now, I have only five more courses to take until I graduate. Until I’m done. Until I can stand up, immensely proud, and tell myself that I have a college degree.

I started college the traditional route, when I was eighteen years old. I attended a small liberal arts university for two years. My goal was to major in English. But then, I took a few language courses…. in German. I fell in love with the German language. I fell in love with the ridiculous sentence structure and harsh sounding words.

But, as with all things, life happened. Seven years ago, my mother passed away.

The death of a parent is so unspeakable. It was a pain that I never before experienced. It was shocking, gut wrenching, painstakingly hard to think, to know, that the person who is the reason for my being alive no longer exists.

But time really does help to heal all wounds, however cliché that saying may be. I moved on. It no longer hurts as much to think about that small, but emotionally impacting, moment in time. Don’t get me wrong, the anniversary of her death, holidays, and her birthday are hard. Sometimes I still think of the what ifs: what if she was still alive? What would we be doing? What if things had turned out differently? What if?

But there’s no point, no good, in torturing myself with the what ifs. Nothing can change the past. The only thing that I can do is live in the moment and be the best person I can be. By doing that, I will make the future just a little bit better.

My future involves me getting a college degree. It took me seven years. But I don’t think of those years as a waste. Instead, it will mean that the end result will be that much sweeter. And that is something I can wait even a lifetime for.

I will receive a B.A. in Communications. But to me that is really a B.A. in life. College changes people. In my case, it’s changed me to become more driven, humble, kind, and appreciative of life.

So, those of you in college, or those taking a little break, take a moment and appreciate the little things. Enjoy the college experience. Enjoy life. Enjoy the people you love. And just know that the end result is something to work hard for.