What I Wish I Knew When I Graduated College

Adulting, Author: Michelle Ioannou

There I was, a glimmer-eyed college graduate excited about the world before her…

JK who am I kidding, I was petrified. I loved college, and I didn’t want to leave.

I guess it hasn’t been that bad since I left. I am beyond grateful for my job, I continue to utilize my vacation days, and I even have a couple of side hustles.

But, that doesn’t change the fact that I had no clue what was next when I got my diploma in my hand. And if you’re a recent college grad who also doesn’t know what’s next, well, that’s normal. Here are some things I wish I knew then though, and hopefully it helps you too.

You don’t need to have your life planned at 22 
I was such a different person at 22 years old than I am now in my later 20s. You think differently, you act differently and you have such a different perspective on life. Plus, as much as we want to have control over this thing called life, we don’t. We’re here for the ride, folks, and to see where life takes us.

Take advantage of (appropriate) opportunities in your path
Don’t think that anything is below you. You never know what the experience will teach you, or who you may meet while doing it. Everything can be a resume or cover letter enhancer, if you word it right. You’re still young, there’s plenty of time to change careers or move on to something else if this opportunity doesn’t work out.

Utilize your social media 
And no, I don’t mean this in terms of using it to keep in touch with your college friends. Use it to network. Engage in conversations with people in your field. Look for great opportunities you can act on. Show off your knowledge on a specific subject. And, of course, college graduation is a perfect time to untag yourself and delete all of those pictures from a frat party.

It’s okay to take time off
You may feel pressured to, but you don’t have to go right into working 9-5. Take the summer off. Travel. Go to the beach. Lounge around the house. You just worked your butt off to get a degree — you deserve it.

You will get rejected
And it’ll suck. The job hunt in general sucks. You’ll ask yourself why all your friends are getting jobs, but you’re not. This is all normal. We all get rejected. It just means that the job wasn’t meant to be, cliche but true. Remember, a career doesn’t define you.

You will miss college, and that’s okay
But at the same time, you’ll see which friendships are meant to last; who you’ll still see after being out of college for four years. But, instead of being wasted together at 3a.m.,  you’re now drunk at 6p.m. at Happy Hour… and that’s okay.

College is Starting — Here’s What to Do… and Not to Do

Author: Gauri Bhatia, Real Life Stories

Being a millennial is not all nostalgia, like Beanie Babies, and Saved By The Bell. Some of our millennial population is starting (or heading back to) the big bad journey that is…. college!

Come on, kids. We have all been through it (or at least 61% of us according to the White House’s Millennial Report). Here’s a how-to for that first week and beyond — with some tips for freshmen, others even applying to veterans.

DO: Figure out how long it takes to get to your classes before the first day. You don’t want to find out that the buses don’t run every hour and miss all your classes for the first week.

DO: Establish a time that you are going to check in with your parents (whether it be daily, or weekly, or monthly, or any combination thereof). They want to hear from you. You want to reassure them that you are alive. Establishing a set time prevents the awkward situation of having to answer the call from Mom and Dad while you’re otherwise occupied.

DO: Try to make friends early. This one’s for you, freshmen. You might not keep the same friends the whole time, but it’s important to start off the year with a good social life.

DO: Take this opportunity to take classes in subjects you would never learn about normally — whether those subjects are Tango, Cognitive Psychology, or even Eastern Religions.

DO: Remember that despite all the fun times to be had, you are still there to get an education. Study as hard as you party/have fun. Seriously, don’t be that seventh-year senior.

DO: Have fun and enjoy (responsibly). When else will you be surrounded by people your own age who are as confused and lost as you? College will be over before you know it, and you will look back and miss these days, once you are out in the “real world.”

DO NOT: Panic. College may be the first time you are living away from home. It’s scary. But you will get through it. You may overload the washing machine and end up in a pool of suds, you may use dish soap in the dishwasher and end up… in a pool of suds, you may accidentally bleach your favorite black shirt… but, it will all be okay.

DO NOT: Party too hard. Life is not that serious. There will be more opportunities, and less hiding in the closet when the cops come.

College is Starting – Here’s What to Do…and Not to Do

Author: Gauri Bhatia, Real Life Stories

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So, being a millennial is not all nostalgia, like Beanie Babies and Saved By The Bell. Some of our millennial population is starting (or heading back to) the big bad journey that is…. college!

Come on, kids. We have all been through it (or at least 61% of us according to the White House’s Millennial Report). Here’s a how-to for that first week – with some tips for freshmen, others even applying to veterans. Because after that, you will be settled and having fun!

  • DO: Figure out how long it takes to get to your classes before the first day. You don’t want to find out that the buses don’t run every hour and miss all your classes for the first week. (I’m looking at my cousin Mohil on that one.)
  • DO: Establish a time that you are going to check in with your parents (whether it be daily, or weekly, or monthly, or any combination thereof).
    • They want to hear from you. You want to reassure them that you are alive.
    • Establishing a set time prevents the awkward situation of having to answer the call from Mom and Dad while the background is filled with things you really don’t want them to hear…(Sorry, Mumsy).
  • DO: Try to make friends early. This one’s for you, freshmen. You might not keep the same friends the whole time, but it’s important to start off the year with a good social life.
    • For example, one of my best friends is someone I met on the first day of school because she lived next door. But the rest of the people I met that day, I no longer talk to. But that’s okay!
  • DO: Take this opportunity to take classes in subjects you would never learn about normally: Tango, Cognitive Psychology and Eastern Religions were my “out of the box” choices.
  • DO: Remember that despite all the fun times, you are still there to get an education. Study as hard as you party/have fun. Seriously, don’t be that seventh-year senior. I had a blast in college and still graduated in three and a half years.
  • DO NOT: Panic. College may be the first time you are living away from home. I know it’s scary. But trust me, you will get through it. You may overload the washing machine and end up in a pool of suds; you may use dish soap in the dishwasher and end up…. in a pool of suds; you may accidentally bleach your favorite black shirt…it will all be okay. Not that I did any of these things…
  • DO NOT: Party too hard. Life is not that serious; there will be more opportunities and less hiding in the closet when the cops come. (I swear, Mumsy, it wasn’t me!)
  • DO: Have fun and enjoy (responsibly). When else will you be surrounded by people your own age who are as confused and lost as you? College will be over before you know it and you will look back and miss these days, once you are out in the “real world.”