Every time I hear “Are you graduating?” it chips away at me inside a little bit because the answer is, I was supposed to. I came into college as a freshman in Fall of 2013 which means that I have spent four years at this school; the stereotypical length that you’re “supposed” to stay in college for your undergrad. But who’s to say that it’s only supposed to take four years? According to the New York Times, “only 50 of more than 580 public four year institutions graduate a majority of their full time students on time” (Lewin, 2014). That being said, I can’t help but feel a little left out when I hear my closest friends talk about what their wearing to graduation or that they just applied for their dream job. I love this school, I really do, but I have reached that point in my life where I want to be done and start my life already. Luckily, that day will come sooner than I imagine in December and I will probably regret all these feelings I have now and want to stay in school just a little while longer. That being said, there’s always a bright side to things so here’s a list of some of the benefits I came up with of having to stay an extra semester in no particular order.
- A chance to keep building my resume! Another semester means another opportunity to build my resume and get another internship. Considering that I have only had one internship during my college career, I am very thankful that I get another chance to apply to internships where I could learn a few more things about the broadcasting business before I am thrust into a job. In addition to internships, it also allows me to take on roles in clubs that I haven’t had the chance to have before. For example, I just accepted a web director position at WTOP and I have held a position there before so I am very excited about being more involved in a club that has been a large part of my college years.
- More time to figure out what I want to do with my life! I’ve narrowed it down to two types of work that I would be interested in: literally anything on a talk show or entertainment news show, or a video editor. I would love to use this extra time to hopefully dive into a professional setting and see if I would really like to do what I think I want to do now.
- A chance to finally get a car! Since I am not graduating and my loans are deferred to six months after I graduate, this now means that instead of starting to pay back my loans in November, I will have to start paying them back in June. What this really means to me is I will finally get the chance to buy my first car! I’ve been saving up for years and never had enough to buy a car on my own and the thought that I have to pay back loans was casting a huge cloud over my decision to buy a car after graduation. Although it only gives me the summer and one more semester to save up money for post grad life, a car is a necessary purchase to get to and from a summer job and a potential job in the future so that’s how i’m justifying it.
- More free food! I work in the dining hall so everytime I go into work we are allowed to eat a meal even if we do not have a meal plan. That means that approximately three times a week I get a free lunch. When you figure that out for the semester, that saves me a ton of money in comparison to if I were to be out of college and buying my own groceries for the entire week.
- More time living on my own! After college I will most definitely have to temporarily move back home for financial purposes so it will help me retain a bit more of my sanity being away from my family a little longer, I’m kidding! However, I really enjoy living with my friends and am thankful that I will have another couple of months with them.
Although many people take having to stay an extra semester negatively, if you look at it in a positive light it will help you deal with having to stay in school longer than you would’ve liked. I have one more semester to get my act together and decide what I would like to do with my life! Until then, I’m trying to take nothing for granted and take every opportunity I can get.