WEB EXCLUSIVE! Are seniors ready?

by Kate Anderson

Spring break was like one last hoorah for many of us old farts called seniors. It was that last week of debauchery and our credit card bills will be our most lasting souvenir. At this point in the semester we are on a fast-pace downward shooting spiral to graduation. Although May Term will blunt the speeding force, nothing will stop it.

My seniors, are we ready? Are we capable of proving to our parents that their five-figure investment will have some payback? I’m not and I know a lot of other seniors who aren’t, either. What the hell do we really know about the real world? We’ve been going to school August through May with summers off since we were five years old in kindergarten. The only real world experience we have is through our internships. Yes, we now know how to troubleshoot the printer and make a fresh pot of Folgers. We’ve been learning about the real world in sterile classrooms with 30-40 students by blandly written textbooks.

The economy is hardly a welcome mat and a bachelor’s degree has become devalued over the years. It’s almost as expected as a high school diploma. So we go to grad school. But which program, what city, how much is tuition and will I get accepted? Graduate school is also a much less pampered experience than undergrad. The only reason I would go to grad school at this point is to mildly better my career as soon as I stop putting one off.

I hear so many seniors sharing their anxiety and disgust about the workforce. “Uh I, like, wanna start my own business, ’cause I, like, totally don’t wanna work for a boss, you know what I’m saying.”

I know what you’re saying, man, although I think many of us are unrealistic.

It seems like everyone just wants to travel and own their own business. That sounds great theoretically. Still that leaves a lot of vital spots in employment unattended to. This culture almost sounds spoiled. A lot of us, definitely including me, want the benefits of employment without breaking a sweat.

But at some point we have to pay our dues for all the fun we’ve had. That time is coming up sooner than we’d like.