The Student After Life

Valuable lessons to take away from college as the real world approaches

I’m gonna use what?!

Think back to 7th….ish grade math class. A time when teachers taught on the whiteboard and not via PowerPoint. On that whiteboard, the teacher is drawing something extremely foreign and looks like something a 4 year-old could draw. It’s got some numbers and some other probably important things on it. Remember the box and whiskers plot? No? We’re about to take a trip down memory lane…

For those of you who are like me and have blocked out everything math-related that isn’t adding, subtracting, multiplying, or dividing,  a box and whiskers plot was that rectangle thing with the two lines drawn from it. Looked like this:

Do you remember thinking, “When am I EVER going to use this?” I believe someone in my class asked that once after learning this box and whiskers thing and the teacher replied with, “Well….you can use it at the grocery store to compare cereal prices!” ……I’m sorry, what? The grocery store is crazy enough. I do not need people, armed with their notebooks and calculators, standing in front of the cereal trying to compare prices. As 7th…ish grade ended, so did learning the box and whiskers plot. We barely knew ye.

If you thought I was going to tell you that I took a trip to the good ol’ Farmville Wal-Mart and ended up dusting off my calculator to construct a cereal-comparing box and whiskers plot….you were wrong.

What I am going to tell you is to keep an open mind to everything you learn during your time in college. Granted, you aren’t going to use every piece of information you’ve learned from every class you’ve ever taken, but it just might come in handy during a heated Jeopardy! competition.

….Am I the only one who has heated Jeopardy! competitions? Oh boy, this just got awkward…Uh okay…back to the topic at hand.

So maybe you won’t use the information in Jeopardy! competitions, but you never know what sort of information you’re going to be required to know for whatever career path you choose. Make sure you’re ready and can prove that you were able to take some valuable things away from each and every class. The minute you think to yourself, “I’m never going to use that” you immediately shut yourself off from whatever is being taught that day. Allow yourself to learn new things. If you’re learning something you already know, allow yourself to expand that knowledge. I promise you won’t regret it.

 

Until next time…

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The dreaded question…

When children are growing up, they’re often asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?”

Common answers included:

* Astronaut

*Firefighter

* Doctor/Veterinarian

* Professional athlete

My answer one time when I was very, very little was, “Mommy, I don’t want to be a boy!!” (Insert laughing here). Well here I am, some 20 years later, still a girl. MISSION. ACCOMPLISHED.

Now that we’ve all had a good laugh, let’s begin with the real reason behind this blog. “What do you want to be when you grow up?” A simple question that offered up some carefree, funny answers when we were kids now sends us into a panic. (Not panicking at the sight of “What do you want to be when you grow up?” How about this: “How many of you know what you want to do after you graduate?)

Wait…you mean, “How many of you know what you want to do after you grow up?”, yeah? No? Are you sure? Cuz I still feel like a 16 year old trapped in a 22 year old’s body. Growing up and graduating are two different things…..right?

As much as we try to avoid this question like the plague, we must come to realize that “growing up” and “graduate” are interchangeable. “I don’t know” is an acceptable answer for a freshmen, sophomore, and it can maybe slide by if you’re a junior. Us seniors are expected to know what we want to do and how we’re going to go about getting into that career field.

I’ve always been jealous of the people who’ve known what they wanted to do since they were kids. And if that category applies to anyone reading this– good for you, I wish you all the best. But for those of us who it took a little longer to figure out…DON’T PANIC. I didn’t figure out that I love to film and edit stuff until my fall semester of my fifth year. Do I think I’m going to walk across that stage in May and immediately be able to find a job? Helllllll no. Do I think people are going to rephrase this dreaded question to sound something like, “What are you going to do now?” Helllllll yes.

You’re going to find something at college that you absolutely love to do. You’re going to find stuff you absolutely hate. If you aren’t sure what you want to do just yet and people decide to ask you the dreaded question, flip it and say, “Well I know for sure that I DON’T want to do/be _______.”  They’ll be impressed and think you’re sitting in your dorm or apartment really thinking about and weighing your career options.

But if that doesn’t work, tell them that you’re really interested in a certain class and you want to see what careers you can relate to that.

If they’re still not satisfied, run. Clearly this person has been sent by the “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Gods and will not accept any response that doesn’t include a definite career plan.

If running away doesn’t work for whatever reason, find Neverland and go live with Peter Pan. They don’t have to grow up there. Lucky bastards.

Until next time…

 

 

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