The Gustavian Weekly

Are society’s expectations of students too high?

By Hannah Haas - Opinion Columnist | February 23, 2018 | Opinion

Growing up we are told to “dream big” and “work as hard as we can”.

Well, what are we supposed to do when that is exactly what we do all of our life and our dreams still don’t come true?

From a young age we were taught, and are still teaching our children, that you must keep up with your classmates, and that if you work hard you will get where you want to be.

Well, I can tell you from my own personal experience and my friends, that is not always the case.

Even if you maintain a 4.0 GPA all through high school and college, as well as consistantly having a part time job, that still won’t guarantee you a place in graduate school or a well paying job out in the real world.

The real world can be a dark and scary place, and us undergrads have no clue what we are in for until it hits us smack in the face.

Don’t get me wrong, I look forward to graduation as much as the next Gustie, but I believe that we need to appreciate our undergraduate years as much as we can, because the chances of you getting into that graduate school or dream job you’ve been hoping for right after senior year are slim to none, my friend.

Almost any job worth having after graduation requires at least two years of experience in the field you are applying for.

Well, here’s a newsflash for those companies, and for us as students as well.

We have been in class all day everyday for the past four years.

Even though it may be hard to accept, there are some jobs or graduate schools that we are just not ready for yet.

I think we could all benefit from students lowering their immediate expectations of life immediately after college.

But, we could also benefit from graduate schools and companies lowering some of their standards for a truly qualified applicant who is motivated, and eager to learn.

It may be time for us as students to just take a beat after graduation.

As Gusties we are always on the go, and as busy as ever.

After graduation, you may find that you have all this time on your hands and you have no idea what to do with it, and maybe that’s okay.

Take some time for yourself, for once.

Enjoy your family, friends and the little things. Accept that not getting into the graduate school you have been hoping for, or you didn’t get that job that you thought you nailed the interview for.

Chances are, you are still extremely young.

You have your entire life ahead of you to study and to work.

The average age of people applying to graduate school right now is about 33, and chances are that is about the same for that dream job of yours.

I’m sorry darling, but you cannot compete with that right now and you shouldn’t have to.

Get some experience under your belt, and live a little while you can.

Enjoy every moment of your free time, before you have to start going to work all day everyday and paying for daycare and paying bills.

Even if it is your dream job, I’m sure there will be times you wish you could just take a break.

Well, that time is now.

This is the time you should be the most proud of yourself, you just accomplished something that is truly great, you have a bachelor’s degree and you worked your butt off to get there.

Take some time and travel, or lay on the couch and binge watch that show your friends keep talking about but you haven’t had time for.

You earned it. Don’t let any school, or job make you feel less than you are.

So dream big my fellow Gusties and anyone else who is reading this.

If you work hard you can get everything you want, just maybe not right away.

Be patient and make time for yourself, and the ones you love and everything else will work out eventually.

So keep your head up kids, things will work out in the end.

Even if they don’t, make the best of it and enjoy the ride.

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