What I’ve Learned After College Graduation

Friendship is not a destination, but a journey. Real world, here we come!

Everyone feels different about graduation. To some, it is what they have been waiting on for four (or more) years. To others, it is a dreaded event they would do anything to put it off.  However, as the date quickly (and I mean quickly!) approaches, we realize it isn’t just a word to fear or celebrate. Graduation marks the end of an era and the beginning of our future.

For me, senior year went by too fast. There are a few things I wish I had known before starting my graduation countdown. And today I want to share them with you.

Hayley 1

Nine best friends anyone could have!

  1.    Make a Bucket List

If you didn’t make a college bucket list your freshman year, write one before starting your senior year. I made a bucket list second semester senior year with one of my best friends and we loved being able to check things off. Your bucket list can be anything and everything. Does your campus have any traditions you haven’t been apart of yet? Have you ever participated in karaoke night? Are there any unique restaurants in town you haven’t tried? Maybe you want to challenge yourself to participate in as many campus 5k’s as you can.  If you are going into your senior year consider this as a way to build memories.

  1.    Work on Your Fitness

Staying active at any age, is very important.  Balancing work, senior projects, Greek and non-Greek organizations and a social life can be stressful at times. Add in perfecting your resume, applying for jobs and writing countless cover letters, you might be thinking, when will I squeeze in lunch let alone a workout? It is possible and you can do it. This is one tip that I wish I had taken more seriously. It is important to start healthy habits now, instead of waiting for life to slow down. Your life will never slow down. So start creating healthy habits today.

Friendship is not a destination, but a journey. Real world, here we come!

Friendship is not a destination, but a journey. Real world, here we come!

  1.    Learn How to Budget

I learned how to budget a week after graduation and I thought to myself, why didn’t I know this all along? Whatever your financial situation may be, it is beneficial to be aware of how much you are spending and what you are spending your money on. I have a tendency to go out to eat more often than I should and with Amazon student prime, how can you not online shop? Since I graduated and found a job, I decided it’s time to be a little more financially responsibly. I highly suggest this great online budgeting tool called, You Need A Budget. It is free for students and makes it easy to keep track of your money! I promise, your parents and bank account will love you.

  1.    Plan How You Will Stay Connected

Senior year is full of “lasts” whether it’s your last walk to campus, your last football game in the student section or your last time using a student discount, a lot of people would agree the hardest one is the last time you are in the same place as all of your friends. If your college experience was anything like mine, all of your memories and friends are wrapped into one perfect little college town. Saying goodbye is hard but it doesn’t have to be goodbye forever. Making a plan to stay connected with your friends can make the transition to the professional world a lot easier. My friends and I have decided we will go on a reunion trip at least every five years. We also use the GroupMe app to keep up with each other on a more regular basis. Every Friday afternoon we take “roll call” and everyone sends a selfie with what they are doing.  Knowing we will always be in-touch with each other makes graduation less of a “goodbye” and more of a “see you later”.

In short, take care of yourself- mind, body and soul, finish your collegiate career on a strong note (who say’s it’s too late for that 4.0) and don’t forget to make memories while you are busy planning for your future.

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