Ever hear the statement “College is the best years of your life”? When people look back on their college years they usually focus on the good times: the social aspect, their friends, parties, and those wild nights.
What people seem to forget to mention is all the stress and worry that rolls around senior year. Once you make it to the last year of college, people automatically assume you have your life together and know all of your future plans.
Once people hear that you’re graduating college in the near future, they automatically ask, “what are your plans after graduation?” Then you have to come up with an answer that doesn’t look like you have only just thought about it in that second.
Sure, most people have an idea of what they would like to do, but it’s not like after graduation you get to live out your dream job. If life was that grand, I would not be writing this article right now.
I can’t speak for everyone, but I am a senior here at West Chester, and as much as I would like to think I have my future figured out, I don’t.
A couple weeks ago, I attended an internship meeting for English majors that covered how to write a resume, cover letter, and basic information about internships. At the beginning of the meeting, one of the professors running it asked if there were any freshmen in the room and at least half the students in the room raised their hand.
I was awestruck. These seemed like people who were on top of their lives and knew for certain what they wanted to do in their first year of college, and there I was, a senior graduating in May who questions the future all the time.
At least I know that I am not alone, though. I interviewed some seniors here at West Chester who are also uncertain of what the future will hold.
Abbie Lookingbill, a communicative disorder major who is graduating in May, said, “I don’t understand why we have to choose what we want to do for the rest of our lives when we’re 18 years old.”
She faces the added pressure of having to go to graduate school after graduating from West Chester. So instead of enjoying her senior year, she’s spending her time applying to graduate schools.
“When I took the GRE’s I felt like I was throwing the $195 I paid to sign up down the drain. Maybe once I get into grad school I’ll feel more confident.”
Craig Hoefling, a business major who is graduating in December is feeling a different kind of pressure. “I’m looking for a place to live with my friends because I don’t want to live at home. Once you’ve been living on your own at college, it’s not fun to be back in your parents’ house.”
A survey done in 2012 says that it’s becoming the “norm” that after graduation, kids move back into their parents house. “Fifty-three percent of 18 to 24-year-olds are living with their parents, and 85 percent of college seniors plan on moving back home after graduation.”
West Chester student Percy Ray, majoring in business managment and graduating in May, has a positive view on his future. “I definitely feel the pressure of lining up a job after graduation, knowing exactly what I want to do with my life, and whether or not to move back home. All scary stuff, but it will all work out with some hard work and a positive attitude!”
All seniors graduating in the near future should have an attitude like Percy Ray’s, including myself.
Sure, the thought of graduating college and being thrown into the real world is actually terrifying to me, but I do believe in myself enough to get a job.
Plus, with the constant hounding of my parents reminding me that I have to start paying off my loans six months after I graduate, how could I not be motivated to find a job?
Keeley Gould is a fourth-year student majoring in English with a minor in journalism. She can be reached at KG787739@wcupa.edu.