Life After College GraduationMar 11, 2016 10:37AM ● By Magdaline Biawogei
Magdaline Biawogei interviewed six graduates about their hopes and expectations: Adedoyin A. Otolorin, Summer Kollie, Abena Nyarko (Adoma), Sandra C. Buruzie, Sametta G. Karmo and Felicia A. Henry.
Adedoyin : I'm graduating with a degree in Human Resource Management from Temple University in May 2015.
Summer : I a m a high school senior at the Girard Academic Music Program graduating in 2015.
Adoma : I am graduating from Temple University in May 2015, with a degree in Entrepreneurship from the Fox School of Business.
Sandra : I'm graduating with a degree in Public Health with a minor in Health Care Management from Temple University in May 2015.
Sametta : I am graduating the eighth grade from Calvary Temple Christian Academy in June 2015.
Felicia : I'm graduating from the University of Pennsylvania, School of Social Policy and Practice with a degree in Social Work/Criminal Justice in May 2015.
What does life after graduation mean to you?
Adedoyin : It just means growing up. Everything before graduation has a procedure you have to follow, so life after graduation is more improvising, you just have to figure it out. It's about figuring things out, growing up, and being independent of all the structure you had before in college.
Summer : Life after high school means going to college to further my education.
Adoma : Craziness. (laughter)
Sandra : It's scary because we have to go into a world that's not sheltered anymore. I'm only scared because it a different lifestyle where I'll have to go to work 9 -5 and be responsible for the growth of a company or organization I'll work for. It's a lot of pressure.
Sametta : It means new beginnings, being more mature, having more knowledge and learning from different people. It means more doors will be open for me.
Felicia : It means the entrance into the "real world". It's the moment where school is no longer an option to hide behind; it's time to step out into the world and do what I was called to do to the fullest extent possible. It is a scary thing to think about, but it is also very exciting. To be able to create a new path for yourself, where you get to choose the "professors", and "classes", and ultimately the "knowledge" is exhilarating.
What would be your ideal life after graduation?
Adedoyin : Sitting at home watching TV. (laughter). Seriously, I would like to do things I really enjoy, regardless of what that is - travel around the world with family and friends.
Adoma : Get a job, living either in Philadelphia or New York. I wouldn't mind moving to Texas or Nevada.
Sandra : When I first got to college, my thoughts were I'm going to go to grad school in D.C., have fun, and live my life. Fortunately I've found someone I've fallen in love with. Now my ideal life after graduation would be to get married. I still plan on going to grad school but somewhere that I can be close to home.
Sametta : My ideal life after graduation would be being an advocate of girls that are physically and/or mentally abused and neglected. I see myself volunteering and starting a charity organization when I get to high school. At the same time I would also like to be able to give a helping hand to my family.
Felicia : My ideal life after graduation is taking a break to travel, decompressing from all the academic stresses I went through and reconnecting to family and friends that school wouldn't allow me to connect with. A full-time job doing what I love, as well as continuing to build my own vision would be ideal.
What are your plans after graduation?
Adedoyin : I plan on finding a full-time job I enjoy after graduation and continue working with FunTimes Magazine.
Summer : I plan to attend the University of Pennsylvania in the fall to study biology and philosophy but I'm looking forward to studying new things.
Adoma : I was hoping to have launched my business by now and then get into the workforce. I wasn't able to achieve this milestone, I have new ones. I currently have a job where I provide consulting services to students who want to start businesses. I plan to stay with them for a little while to get consulting experiences and then venture into the real world. I'm finishing up my business plan. I see myself getting a new job in January 2016. I'm also working with a developer to launch my website in January as well call arts.com, an online market place for artist in developing countries.
Sandra : I'm moving home to north New Jersey. I plan on working for a year and then go to grad school. The whole goal is to get a job before May 8th, before I walk across the stage. I currently have an internship with the Department of Public Health in Philadelphia. They've helped me revamp my resume and cover letter. I started applying for full time jobs in early April and I've been getting job calls and offers.
Sametta : My plans would be to go to high school and start my charity for girls. I would like to do remarkable things to put on my college applications.
Felicia : My plans are exactly what my ideal life after graduation is. I'm already in the process of interviewing for the job I love, planning my vacations, and drawing out the next steps for my vision.
How should one prepare for a life after graduation?Adedoyin : Decide on your plans earlier in college so you don't become overwhelmed.
You need to figure out what path you would like to go to. Not just any path, but something you really enjoy so you can dedicate your energy to it. Go to a professional center, find mentors for help to prepare ahead for life after graduation.
Summer : Someone in my position needs to make sure that they are looking for ways to pay for college because it is very expensive. It is important to apply for financial aid through FAFSA and the state grant and for as many scholarships as possible. The summer after senior year could be a good time to prepare oneself academically and mentally for the transition from high school to college. That could be reading a few challenging books, taking a summer class, or doing an internship in a field that you are interested in.
Adoma : If you haven't figured out what you want to focus on, figure what you enjoy doing and get job experience. Get as much experience as you can while you're in college and put your all into it.
Sandra : Relax, it's okay to breathe. Even though the pressure comes from everyone, you don't have to pressure yourself. Don't stress, don't get angry with yourself and don't look down on yourself. Employer are always looking for various skill sets. Just know that when you find your passion and an organization hires you, you're going to be where everyone else is. Relax and enjoy life. Of course without a doubt, God is getting me through college and will help me through life. Without Him I would not be in the major that I'm in today. My relationship with Him has gotten me through undergraduate and I know it will get me through the rest of my life after graduation.
Sametta : I would say you're never too young to think about your future and plan ahead. Have multiple plans.
Felicia : I think the best thing to do to prepare for life after graduation is relax and have faith. Life doesn't always go the way we want it to, but the important thing is not to let it produce anxiety and rob the next moment of its newness and joy. You can get all the experience, internships and classes that you think are necessary, but you have to have faith that you'll make it regardless of what's on paper. The one thing that got me through school and will continue to get me through life is the fact that I was designed to persevere. I am graced to make it on the other side, no matter how difficult it seems.
If college is supposed to prepare students for a life after graduation, why do you think there's so much stress involved?
Adedoyin : School prepares you for your job, not for life after graduation. They help you professionally. Nobody tells you what's going to come at you after graduation or that what you study may not be what you'll be after college. Nobody says, Adedoyin you are graduating; what are you going to do. Colleges need centers to help students prepare for life after graduations, not just for their majors. I am thankful that Temple introduced me to the arts, theater in particular which is a different side of me that I will like to explore in the future.
Adoma : I think Temple prepared me only after I switched my major to Entrepreneurship. The program has allowed me to do real business work. I was able to apply some of the things I learned in the class room with the startup businesses I worked with at my internship. Being involved with the Temple's Black Student Launchpad allowed me to attend startup weekends that helped me kick start the idea of my business and get people involved with my business as well as the draft for my investor's pitch. If it wasn't for entrepreneurship I wouldn't be able to do what I'm doing now.
Felicia : I think school and my scholarly experiences prepared me for a life after graduation by preparing me to deal with people. I learned the most from my classmates, even more than academia. So, as I go out into the world, I know how to speak the language of the "ideal real world" but also know that the "real world" is what you make it.