Last semester of school, first day of class
This is it. My last semester of my undergrad is going to start tomorrow. Am I ready? I am. But like the saying goes, time flies by. And logically speaking, it’s because you remember moments of your life from the past that carries with you, on each and every passing day, so when the time actually hits, you don’t really feel that it was actually a long time ago.
I’m not here to talk about my degree or my university in particular. I want to focus on the fact that I’m starting class tomorrow on the very last milestone of my journey to becoming an adult and ending my voyage of going to school as a student or child. University hasn’t been particularly different from high school, though obviously there are blunt differences between the two. But to be quite frank, I felt like I just ran through another era of high school. And the summer breaks don’t end up making it feel any less different.
I don’t want to cheese things up and make this as glamorous as society perceives things like graduation or commencement. But in reality, it is. It is a leap forward to adulthood. It is a leap forward to achieving greater aspirations in life. And given my lack of experience in a reality outside of academia, I have to ask myself, am I ready? Am I ready to work throughout the year, without calling the summer period off? Am I ready to earn a viable amount of income to support myself in the real world?
You can say yes to all those questions. Well, your kinda forced to. But reality is, academia and professional work, are different in many ways and people (or shall I say students) are often not prepared to face the challenge of being there in the real world. They can’t. Most academia institutions teach students how to read textbooks and follow instructions. They don’t teach students on how to intuitively become successful at their future job. Our minds or what academia teaches us, is to think in a linear fashion. If A = B then C = D. That’s what the textbook says. But following the textbook wouldn’t be practically possible, especially when you start working.
It’s not the books or exams that I’ll miss. My greatest joy from academia that I’ll miss were the moments where you were given an opportunity to build a connection with the people around you. It’s the times where you got to say to xyz friend, “Hey, you have the upcoming PA Day off right? Want to hang out at the movies?” None of that nonsense will be possible once you and xyz friend graduate from academia. Your schedules run parallel to each other and commitments/priorities in your life take precedence over a casual hangout.
I want to end it here. There’s a lot to experience after graduating from academia. A lot of that will be a challenge. But a challenge that will be faced by everyone. And hopefully you are ready for it.
Time for my first day of class!
January 18, 2016.