The College Grad Perspective

Posted on 05. Oct, 2015 by

Blog Photo - Grad 10.05.15We think being in college categorizes us as being adults and that we’re in the ‘real’ world. Well, as I have come to find out, that is completely false. What I thought was so important in college in preparation for my post grad life is not necessarily the case. Now don’t get me wrong, college was by far the best four years of my life (so far) and I would love to relive those memories again. However, as my father says, college is just a stepping-stone. The only problem with that was I had no idea what path the stones were taking me on. Correction, I knew the path I wanted to take, but little did I know that the stepping-stones disagreed. The four years I spent in college yes were to help me figure out what I wanted to do with my life, but those four years were so much more than that, which is what I have learned to appreciate in my post grad life.

Three things I have learned so far in my post grad life:

  1. College is just a Pre-Requisite for the ‘Real World’

We graduate from college with the assumption that we are more than qualified to land these incredible jobs and we just assume that we have the experience to do so. In reality, we are not qualified (for most situations) and we are not these experienced individuals that we may believe to be. Yes college prepares you for a career and begins the foundation for your career path, but it does not automatically entitle you to your dream job. What would a dream be then if it was just so easy to receive? The golden question though that all college grads ask: how do I receive an entry-level job when two to three years of experience are required. This question has already been answered, but you may not realize it. In order to land your dream job and fulfill the goals you have, you may have to take a job you do not love or did not see yourself doing. What my experience at Juno has taught me so far is that this world is filled of a surplus of people that have an ample amount of experience, which most likely means extremely qualified. However, the knowledge and tools that you gained in college and how they are utilized is what sets your unqualified self apart. It is important to remember that college was your time to learn, grow and figure out who you are and the person you want to be as the next chapter of your life begins.

  1. It’s All About Connections

Which brings me to my next point; never underestimate the power of LinkedIn. I knew this was an outlet for networking and building connections with new people, but I did not realize how crucial of a tool it is. LinkedIn is essentially your own information page for selected people to see. For my generation, well all generations really, LinkedIn is the best social media outlet to be used except it is to be used in a professional manner. College is over as much as I hate to admit, but that means it is officially time to be on your ‘A’ game since you never know whom you may meet, where and how it may happen. LinkedIn is not the only tool to build your network, but grow and build relationships within your existing network. If I have learned anything, it’s all about whom you know.

  1. Find Yourself and Your Passion

Be prepared for the path that you thought was your dream to guide you in a different direction. What I have learned is the path that I set myself up for did not take me to what I thought was my ‘dream job’, instead it took me on a path of discovering and realizing the person I really was. The Jesuit education I have received definitely has had a positive effect on my ability to think about the impact I have on others and my own life. I could not be more appreciative and happy with the position I am in. As my mother always says, everything happens for a reason. Just because you did not follow the path that you thought you would be on or maybe you did follow the path of your dreams, it is still important to continue to be a daydreamer and to have a passion. Now that you are in the ‘real’ world this does not mean to forget about your college experience, but rather take those experiences with you to further yourself each day. What I have learned and continue to learn as one chapter of my life is ending and the next chapter is beginning—knowing what drives myself each day to discover and live for a passion.