Today: Jun 16, 2024

Editor’s Note: Open doors

What to do, what to do.
Four years of college, now it’s time to go home. For any of you following my series of depressing graduation-based columns, I thank you. For those who haven’t, well, you prob­ably won’t be reading this anyway—your loss.
But now it’s time to look around. Survey the people sur­rounding you that are getting ready to don those awkward black robes and ill-fitting hats. Will that guy be famous? How long until she’s unemployed? What percentage of this graduating class will end up dancing on a pole? All pressing questions, but none more pressing than which of those you will be.
For every graduating class at Southern there is a Rob Parker; unfortunately, most don’t quite reach the height of their aspirations.
It really comes down to the looking glass through which you are choosing to view your college diploma. Walking across that stage and receiving the faux diploma from the nameless person you won’t give a second thought to for the rest of your life can mean many things. Walking across that stage may be a good photo opportunity for parents and rela­tives, but what it means to you is more important.
That piece of paper can open doors, but it is your re­sponsibility to walk through them. If graduating from college is something you’re looking at as the end of an era, the end of the road, the culmination of everything academic and scholarly in your life, the day you stop having to learn— reality-check time, because it will be.
Every day is a lesson; every job is a class; learn or fail, adapt or die.
Well, maybe not die, but like I said, don’t be in the pole-dancing percentage.
Taking a job just for the money isn’t the answer either. Who needs the meager, minimum-wage paycheck from Applebees? This is the moment of truth when it comes to nailing down your employment dreams. Take that unpaid internship, relocate for your dream job—do whatever you can before it’s too late.
I’ve been told before, you either choose the job you want, or you get chosen by one. That sentiment couldn’t be more true. Now is not the time to travel the world, unless your goal in life is to be a world traveler. Now is not the time to take a year off, unless your goal in life is to be unemployed.
A diploma from Southern may be exciting for a day, but realizing you’ve completely wasted it will be depressing for a lifetime. Don’t let that happen to you.
So do yourself a favor, take my advice and continue to learn. Continue to aspire to be something better. Don’t settle, and for God’s sake, don’t try to tell me it’s just for the exercise.

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