finishing the tutorial

21 May

In less than an hour, I will be leaving the last class of my college career.  I would say last class, period, but I was reminded earlier today that I don’t want to rule out taking courses from the community college for fun.  Bettering myself for a better future, and all of that.

I won’t graduate until Sunday, May 31st.  I’ll turn twenty two a couple of days before that.  I’m not sure which seems more pivotal to me.  Twenty two is a rather big age.  It’s the point at which you move past ‘stupid young adulthood’ where you glorify in being grown up as though it’s a game that you’ve mastered.  Twenty two is the first birthday where you are truly uncelebrated.   You don’t need childish pandering anymore, and it’s not a sanctioned milestone, so here, eat a piece of cake and go home.  I don’t think I’ll miss all the pomp of birthdays…I’ve never really gotten into it anyways.  But the other trappings that go along with that age…I might miss that.

Graduation is an entirely separate animal.  I’ll be the first of my close group of high school friends to be completely finished with school, and to be out on my own.  I’ll be the first of my close group of college friends to plummet into the working world.  I’ll be the last in my family to do any of it.

I have yet to decide how I feel about any of this.

Those of you who have graduated, how did it impact you?  Were you excited?  Disappointed?  Scared?

Those of you who are still in school, are you looking forward to this point?  Or dreading this?


Posted by on May 21, 2009 in Life


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4 responses to “finishing the tutorial

  1. Kage

    May 21, 2009 at 1:47 pm

    Graduation was OK – Peter Mansbridge spoke so that was really neat. But it wasn’t until after I graduated and started working full time that I really appreciated the freedom of being finished school. Nothing can describe the feeling of coming home at the end of the day and not having anything to worry about; no papers, no exams to study for, no readings. The weekends are like a mini holiday at the end of each week. And now I’m going back to school in September to do my Masters….why am I torturing myself?! Oh right….a career! I think the “sad” thing that people experience after finishing school is wondering, “what now”? If you don’t already have a clear cut path for yourself, it can be a bit of a holy shit moment.

  2. lisa

    May 21, 2009 at 5:07 pm

    I definitely agree with Kage–you don’t know how much free time you have until you’re finished with school and realize you have entire evenings, weekends even, to fill with pursuit of personal stuff. 🙂

    I’d already been 22 for about half a year before I graduated. I remember facing grad with a sense of finality…one chapter of my life closing for good and a new, hopefully more exciting one about to begin. I already had a job lined up pre-grad so it just felt like things were falling into place.

    • Julia

      May 22, 2009 at 12:10 am

      Wow, the big day is coming fast! You guys are making me feel old. I was a little scared to graduate and leave a place that had become home, but I was feeling pretty ready, a little cloistered by the Linfield bubble, a little ready to stretch my wings. Think about how much you’ve grown and changed in the last four years, how much you’ve learned about yourself. Every time I cross a landmark like that I think, “Wow, this must be what it’s like to be grown-up, I’m so different from (insert time here).” What you don’t realise is that so long as you keep challenging yourself, that growth never stops… College is an amazing time, but you’ve gotta keep moving on, there’s so much left to be discovered about yourself!

      I definitely agree with the comments above about free time, you just have so much less stress in your life. On the other hand, most jobs really don’t cater to the short attention span we build up in college. To spend 8 hours straight sitting at a desk working on one project that you’re not necessarily all that interested in… I’m really glad I took six months to work a real job before going to grad school, because I felt much more ready after that. It gave me perspective into what I was actually trying to achieve by studying further, namely, what I liked about the job I’d been working, what I didn’t like, and what sort of degree I needed to continue to do the things I wanted to. Sometimes ‘real jobs’ are harder, but in different ways – you usually don’t have a whole cohort around facing the same challenges, people you can ask for help and work with. I don’t miss silly assignments, online quizzes, or 8am classes. I did have this earth-shattering moment shortly after graduating that was heartbreaking. I was hunting for breakfast and decided to pull a pint of ice cream out of the freezer. As usual, I thought, “Hey, I’m a college kid, I can do silly things like eat ice cream for breakfast,” but I wasn’t a college kid any more. I had a moment of panic where I thought, “Does this mean I can’t have ice cream for brekkie any more????!? I have to be responsible???” Fortunately, it wasn’t a long moment before I decided I didn’t need the excuse of being a silly college kid any more, that just being me was as good of a reason as any for savouring everything life has to offer – including ice cream.

      I think this about sums it up:

      Love ya! Happy graduation! – Julia

  3. K

    May 23, 2009 at 11:36 am

    You know how I feel about post-grad life. It is awesome. You’re done! Congrats! Now go roll around in pillows and feel accomplished and free!


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