The dreaded “G” word is quickly approaching and no matter how hard we may stop it, we cannot ignore its arrival. Graduating from college is a great accomplishment. It is something that not everyone experiences and is something that many people work extremely hard to accomplish. As my college days are coming to an end, I can’t help but find myself looking back on my time spent making the most amazing memories. I realize that these four years are so very special, and I also realize I will probably want to relive them for the next 10 years of my life. So, in honor of that, I present to you 10 tips for those of you who plan to graduate from college.
1. Don’t wish it away.
They’ll tell you don’t wish away your senior year of high school because you’ll get to college and miss it. I’m telling you don’t wish away your college years, either. My four years are dwindling down and the time has gone by way too fast.
2. Appreciate your friends and the ability to walk down a dorm hallway to be with them.
I’m not joking, you’ll miss this when you move off campus and you’ll miss it when you’re getting ready to graduate. Ask my roommate, I come and stand in her doorway just because I know after May I won’t get to. Appreciate the people who still ask you to have lunch with them after spending the past two classes with you. These friendships are some that you should cherish throughout your college years and after that as well.
3.Coffee, sugar or candy breaks after 11 p.m.
You’ll need it. I hated it my freshman year, but I learned to live off of these tricks to stay up. Oh, and also to make it to my class the next morning.
4. Don’t park in a faculty parking spot, okay? They don’t care what year you are…you’re still going to get a ticket.
There’s really no explanation for this. If you’re a freshman, don’t do it. If you’re a senior and you just want to try your luck…don’t. They’ll catch you eventually. (Tip: Check your friends’ Snapchat stories. They always video cops writing parking tickets!)
5.Help your peers when they need it.
When a classmate is struggling, help them. It won’t hurt to put forth a little effort for someone else. Trust me, they will appreciate it and will return the favor some day.
6.Always say yes.
Unless it is something harmful to you or unethically sound, always say yes. In four years, you won’t have the opportunity to eat junk food at 3 a.m. with your best friend. You won’t have the opportunity to eat Ramen Noodles for every meal without being judged, so might as well say yes to it now. When your professor asks something of you (that you really don’t want to do) always say yes. They’ll remember it. They’ll also love you for it. (Bonus: Professors totally talk about you. They also vote on your for honors, awards, etc. so you should definitely let them love you.)
7.Remember details for your resume. It’s actually extremely important.
Don’t pull the whole “I’m a sophomore I don’t need a resume” stunt. Start making that thing now. You’re more likely to remember what your roommate did last Thursday night than what you did at an internship four years ago. So, make it now and build it up as you progress.
8.Honors students: write your thesis.
I’m so serious. If you put yourself through honors courses and never follow through with a thesis and defense, what’s the point? The purple tassel will absolutely be worth it. Come find me in May and I will reiterate that. Also, it looks really nice on that resume I was talking about (Bonus: Maybe you’ll get lucky like me and get to present your thesis in Las Vegas with Dr. Farris).
9.Know that the bittersweet feeling is absolutely normal.
You know those times when your advisor tells you that she wants to lock you in her office so you can’t graduate? And also, those times when you actually consider that as an option? Yeah, that feeling is normal.
10.Finish strong and thank every person who has guided you.
Ah, saving the best for last. They stress in college how important it is to never take credit for anyone else’s work. Hopefully, you will have this concept memorized by your senior year. Thank your advisor for answering your annoying texts and emails at all times of the day. Thank your professor who listens to you rant about all aspects of life (except their class, of course). Thank those who go out of their way to encourage you. Thank your closest friends and don’t forget to thank your family. You may have physically done the work, but they have fueled you emotionally and mentally through this journey. You will see it too when your college experience is almost complete.