Senior Column: Knowing what it’s like to face the unknown
With four internships under my belt, a 3.6 GPA, and a senior student leadership position on campus, one would think that I have my future planned, right? Wrong.
There’s less than one month until graduation and I still don’t have a job.
All I keep hearing is “You’ll figure it out,” or “Everything will fall into place.” Maybe that’s true, but what if it’s not? Yes, I am probably putting too much pressure on myself, which isn’t a surprise since I’ve been planning my postgrad life from the moment I stepped onto campus my freshman year. I did everything that I could to try to ensure a smooth transition from college to my career, but what I’ve come to accept is the reality of the job hunt.
I know that I can’t be the only senior feeling this way. I can’t be the only senior that scrolls through their Facebook feed congratulating friends on their accepted job or internship offers while coping with the reality of their own uncertain future. In fact, I sat in a classroom full of seniors a few weeks ago and witnessed one hand raised when the class was asked who had a job lined up following graduation. That’s proof that I’m not alone in this.
With that said, I think seniors are under the false impression that they should have success fast, and have it now. I could see the fear of not having a job make someone take the first opportunity that comes at them, even if it’s not something that they would enjoy. However, I’m not going to take a job simply because it’s offered. I also understand that my first job will not be the job that I will have for the rest of my career, and it may not be a job that I absolutely love, but I just want to be genuinely happy wherever I end up.
Six months from May, I hope that I will be one of the seniors who can relay their job status back to Seton Hall. Earlier this year, Seton Hall reported that its overall employment rate for the Class of 2016 rose to 90 percent among students that actively pursued work. That’s great, but that statistic includes students who were hired within six months of graduation. What I want to know is what did the percentage of students who didn’t find something right away do? Did all of those students face the same pressures and fears that correlate with a blurry future that seniors like myself in the Class of 2017 are facing?
Instead of focusing on what I don’t have control over and what I can’t do, what I can do is become one of the only seniors that is okay with not knowing. I could simply become comfortable with the unknown and continue to try my best.
I’m still figuring it all out, and that’s okay.
Leah Carton is a public relations major from Keyport, N.J. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.