Find a job. Travel. Take time off. They’re pieces of college graduate advice that are easily justified and commonly prescribed. But there’s more to walking across the stage than that. Sid Chang, a managerial science senior graduating in just a few weeks, has heard his fair share of advice leading up to his big day. But he says it’s the more universal and “applicable” recommendations that have made the most sense.
“It took a lot of hard work for me to get where I’ve gotten, a lot of obstacles. Many people have told me to simply enjoy that fact with those who have helped me, and to just be proud of it; the real world will be a whole new chapter.”
Your own happiness is worth elaborating on. Even when senior projects or finals may be stressful, or family members argue over the grad party or your future plans, your graduation is still a celebration. If that means having to make sacrifices or be up front with others to do the same, do so (respectfully). It’s your day.
He also points out the treacherous social transition from campus to the vast world, something every grad must anticipate. “I hear it’s a lot harder to be social when you’re not centered around a campus or surrounded by peers of a similar age group every day. Maybe get a hobby or be more adventurous to stay social.” Sid plans to frequently rock climb to help adjust to a new job and a new home in Northern California this summer.
And lastly, but maybe most importantly, he suggests keeping your ceilings high.
“School gives you the tools to learn and now it’s time to use them. A job doesn’t mean you stop learning, it just means you’re learning in a different way, through experience.” Whether it’s grad school, time off, or a career, there’s always a new challenge. But with an outlook like this, Sid and his fellow graduates are sure to conquer them all and in doing so lead their generation forward, something we can all celebrate.
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