5 Seemingly Important Things That Truly Don't Matter After Graduation
When you're in college, it feels like your time there will never end. You feel like you'll never achieve greater successes and sometimes, your failures seem like they're the end of the world.
But, senior year spring semester roles around, and suddenly it's looming: The Real World.
As a 2014 graduate living in the “real world,” I can't tell you it's not as scary as it seems.
Over the past year since I've graduated, I've come to realize many of the most “important” things during my four years of college now seem extremely irrelevant and useless.
Take note, class of 2015, of the five things that will not matter after graduation:
1. Your Major.
The go-to question, from day one at orientation to your final days as a senior, for anyone to start a conversation was always, “So, what's your major?”
While it seems to matter a lot during those four years in school (God, how could someone possibly think you're a public relations major?), employers don't really seem to care. It's your real-world work experience that makes the biggest impact.
Though in some fields, a specific education in a specific major is required (think engineering, chemistry, etc.), often it's your interests, internship experience and determination that will land you the job.
Take jobs you're interested in, pursue hobbies that mean something to you and put your heart and soul into your job search, your internships and your extra-curriculars.
Often, these qualities and experiences say more than the major written on your diploma.
2. Your GPA.
You lived it, you breathed it and you counted down the days until your transcript was updated on the university website.
You always needed to make sure your GPA wasn't in the tank after that f*cking impossible final you just took. But, just like your major, sometimes your GPA isn't as important as you think.
If you're applying to grad school, law school or medical school, please disregard this. Admissions people at graduate schools definitely care about your GPA, and I completely understand.
But, you shouldn't judge your worth simply by your grades. You're more than that C+ you got in organic chemistry freshman year.
After you get a job, no one (and I actually mean no one) will care if your grade point average was in the top first percentile or not.
Try hard, do your best and put everything you've got into it. If you only get a B, life will still go on.
3. Your Social Circle.
Were you in Greek life? In the marching band? An athlete? Or, were you more of a loner? No matter how big your university is, you probably got pigeonholed into a “high school” stereotype at some point freshman year.
And, as everyone knows, once you're labeled, it's hard as hell to convince anyone otherwise.
Great news: Once college is over, no one gives a f*ck whom you were friends with in college.
Many people make their friends for life in college (I still live with one of my college roommates), and that's great.
But mostly, no one cares who you hung out with, what crowd you were in or how you spent your free time.
Be yourself, do what you want, and if people still don't like it even after you graduate, find new people. There's always more where they came from.
4. How Much You Partied (Or Didn't).
I am a self-proclaimed grandma. I like to be in my bed at the strike of 11 pm, and I have absolutely no shame about it (a girl has to get her sleep).
Was I like this when I was a senior in college? You bet I was. On Friday mornings, when I looked at Facebook photos and saw everyone had raged the night away at the bar, was I self-conscious I didn't have any tagged photos? Did it look like I had no fun in college? Really, who cares?
Don't get me wrong; I had my fair share of fun. I went out with friends, went to parties, and I did the whole “college” thing.
But, if you're someone who likes to stay at home binge-watching “Breaking Bad” instead of taking shots of tequila at the bar, no one cares once you've left the small bubble of college.
Most “real people” are more concerned about their beauty sleep than doing another round of Fireball, anyway. (Being hungover at work isn't generally a good look.)
Go out, have fun, or stay in: Do what you want. Regardless, there's no one there to care.
5. If You Graduate Without (Or With) A Job.
If you've got a post-graduation job lined up, congratulations! It seems like you've got it all together.
Most likely, you work in business or finance, are going to grad school or are just really, really lucky.
For all the graduates out there who are walking across the stage to that diploma, tossing their caps and walking into the great unknown that is the modern job hunt, have faith. I promise something will work out eventually.
Most people I know graduated without job offers. And, most people I know who graduated without job offers are now gainfully employed.
Sometimes, it just takes a little bit of time, hard work, dedication and a few weeks (or, you know, months) living at home, sending out hundreds of applications, follow-up emails and copies of your résumé.
Stay dedicated, be open-minded, and in a few weeks (or months), the interviews will most likely be rolling in.
In six months, no one will care if you had that job offer in hand at graduation. It only matters how you put that degree to use in the long run.
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