Are you sick of people asking you what you’re doing after graduation yet? Are you ready to move out of that college house you signed a lease on a year ago? Are you ready to make your own meals, pay your bills, find a job, become an adult?
And that’s okay.
And if you’ve already got it figured out – please, teach me your ways.
For those of us graduating in May, we’ve got about nine weeks left. Nine weeks left to stay out, sleep in, work out in the middle of the day, bombard our professors with questions during their office hours and figure out a plan for what we’ll do when the prospect of a “summer break” fades to a distant memory.
I don’t want to leave this place that’s taught and given me so much without remembering the things I’ll miss the most.
1. My professors. For all you do with not enough compensation, thank you for being open, compassionate and encouraging. You’ve challenged me on topics I found uncomfortable and made me confront things within myself that I didn’t even know existed. My worldview has expanded because of you, and for that I’m grateful.
2. UP studies abroad. I had no intention of studying abroad while in college until my parents attended a studies abroad presentation on a whim during freshman orientation. They told me I’d better apply for the Salzburg program or I’d regret it. They were absolutely right. My sophomore year in Salzburg was life-changing, and I’m grateful for the many people that make UP’s study abroad program so wonderfully seamless and enriching. Father Art Wheeler, Eddie Contreras, Rene Horcicka, Frau Strobl and many others… Danke Schon.
3. Commons Food. That’s right. We might have a love-ate relationship, but it’s always been there for me. (But bring back Cove salads, please.)
4. Quality discussions & friends. We’ll never be around this many intelligent, lively, lovely people our same age ever again. The closest we might come is at bars on the weekends. I’ll miss the classroom atmosphere here and the late-night discussions on couches at friend’s houses, in a Pilot House booth or at hall masses.
5. The Twilight Room on a Thursday night. The lovingly divey bar that will be kind of awkward to frequent once you’re no longer a broke college student. Your dank carpets and sub-par service will be greatly missed.
6.The Beacon. Did I mention that this list is in no particular order? By and large, my experience at The Beacon has been my most formative during my four years at UP. The Beacon has taught me more about ethics, journalism, writing, speaking, interviewing, listening, managing a team, being managed, working on deadline and collaborating on a team than any of my college internships/jobs/classes combined. Thanks especially to the one and only Nancy Copic, the adviser of the century, for helping me find my true potential (and for the endless supply of candy at our meetings).
As we round the corner to the finish line and the graduation stage comes into sight, just remember that it’s okay to cry. It’s okay to be confused and anxious about what’s to come. As cliché as it sounds, I’m thankful to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.