So it’s your last year – for you seniors, at least. Whether it took you three, four or five years, those of us on our way to graduation can all sigh the same sigh of relief. On three.
Thr – shit.
It’s not June. It’s not graduation. It’s not even nice out.
It’s February. It’s cold. And it’s midterm season.
We still have the rest of winter and spring quarters? I thought this was senior year? What happened to coasting through the last of our classes and partying every weekend?
Where are all the shortcuts? I don’t get a free fifth and sixth period?
Senior year of college is nothing like senior year of high school. I mean, we could have guessed that. But our responsibilities are just as heavy as before. Everything is taken as seriously – if not more seriously – than the first three years of college.
As we sign up for the last of our classes during pass times, we’re reminded that after June we’ll be waiting to hear back about job and grad school applications. (And dreading a potential move back home with our parents.)
We’re going to be thrown into the dog-eat-dog, nine-to-five world. Hyphenated descriptions of the world will control us. And let me be the one to break the news: “nine-to-five” does not exist.
It’s “eight-to-five.” And that makes a huge difference.
We’re going to be morning commuters, more addicted to coffee than we’ve ever been. Suddenly, we’ll have a boss we hate and coworkers that are weird.
The comfort of being invited to a party where you can get free alcohol and make a fool out of yourself is gone. Credit card debt and mortgage payments will consume us instead.
(Sorry, I realized how depressing this all sounds.)
But honestly, when else will we have a supportive bubble like the one we do as undergrad students? Even grad students at UC Davis have to pay to ride the bus!
I’m dreading it. Even looking for a job is geared toward those still enrolled in school. Employers want excited undergrads that can’t wait to gain experience and show off their talents as interns and so on. They don’t want jaded, recent graduates who want to pay off their loans and get out of the office in time for happy hour.
Who can blame us? If you can graduate from a UC without feeling jaded, you’re a better person than me.
We’re so close, though. We’re almost done. You should know what to expect. But what about the final stretch? The last hurrah? The 11th hour? Another cliché phrase about the end?
We have to enjoy ourselves. We need to spend time with people we might part ways with shortly. We need to get up and go to that 9 a.m. class even if it seems like such a good idea to sleep in. We should study one more hour for that test, just in case.
As jaded as we are, the years we spend in college will be some of the best we have. We all share the pain and agony of Monday morning or Friday afternoon exams. Having finals on the last day at the last time right before summer. Getting reduced-price coffee so we can study for finals. You get the idea.
There’s a niche for almost every individual in college. Our time here can really shape who we become and what we want to pursue for the rest of our commuter, morning-coffee, nine-to-five lives.
As much as it sucks, we’ll look back and think about how easy we had it.
So chin up, seniors. We’re almost there. And if you run into me anywhere in Davis, buy me a beer. I could use one.
SARA KOHGADAI is jaded and has a severe case of senioritis. She probably won’t even check her e-mail at email@example.com any more.