High School Graduation Vs. College Graduation

High School Graduation Vs. College Graduation

Why senioritis affects high school seniors more than college seniors.
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The time has come. I am taking the final classes in my degree plan, and I am preparing to graduate this upcoming spring semester. To tell you the truth, it feels different then what I was expecting. I remember the eagerness I had when confronted with the thought of graduating high school, but that's not there this time around. I know that there are some key differences, but I was anticipating a lot more lead up.

I started college in 2013, and I got to it fairly easily, at least compared to high school. Things just made a lot more sense, and it felt like I was actually working towards something. Though I am a fairly introverted person, the independence of college forced me out of my shell and I became louder and more involved. College has truly allowed me to grow more than I did in the four years of high school. So as I prepare to go out, I know it is necessary, and it is part of what made college so great, preparing for this future that I am about to enter, but that excitement is just not there. I could point to the promise of debt and depression of not getting the jobs that I was picturing when I chose my major, that the degree I spent all of this time and money on won't be worth much once I leave, or that I have lived out what many call the easiest and sometimes best parts of their lives, but truly I don't think those play into it (at least that much.) Yeah, I'm sure I will look back at these times with fondness and probably reminisce about the "better times," but I think it is the unknown which has me hesitant.

I know that typically includes the things I mentioned before, the possibilities of not having a job, not using my degree, or just being unhappy, but I think it is much more than that. I am not to concerned with where the path will lead me, but rather taking that step into the unknown. I think that is part of what this graduation in particular means for me. I'm worried it won't be in the direction I wanted to go, or it may mean that I will need to stop dreaming, which is a big part of who I am. At high school graduation people want to hear what you are going to do, but at college they already know and can be more critical, I know because I have been there. At college graduation there is an anxiety of "is this degree going to provide for me" and then that starts to extend to all of your friends. So perhaps that is it, this anxiety that surrounds college graduation, that when we step into the unknown there will be nothing there to stand on.

Cover Image Credit: Thinkstock

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22 New Things That I Want To Try Now That I'm 22

A bucket list for my 22nd year.

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"I don't know about you but I'm feelin' 22," I have waited 6 long years to sing that and actually be 22! Now 22 doesn't seem like a big deal to people because you can't do anything that you couldn't do before and you're still super young. But I'm determined to make my 22nd year a year filled with new adventures and new experiences. So here's to 22.

1. Go sky diving.

What's crazier than jumping out of a plane? (Although I'll probably try indoor skydiving first.)

2. Go cliff jumping/diving.

I must be the only Rhode Islander who hasn't gone to Jamestown and jumped off a cliff.

3. Ride in a hot air balloon.

Up, up and away.

4. Try out skiing.

Cash me in the next Olympics, how bout dat.

5. Try out snow boarding.

Shawn White, I'm coming for you.

6. Go bungee jumping.

Because at least this time I'll be attached to something.

7. Go to Portugal.

I mean I'm Portuguese so I have to go at some point, right?

8. Go to Cape Verde.

Once again, I'm Cape Verdean so I have to go.

9. Vist one of the seven wonders of the world.

I mean hey, Egypt's on, my bucket list.

10. Try out surfing.

It's only natural that somebody from the Ocean State knows how to surf.

11. Learn a new langauge.

Because my little bit of Portuguese, Spanish and Latin isn't cutting it anymore.

12. Travel to a state that I've never been to before.

Fun fact: I've only been to 17 of the 50 states.

13. Go paddle boarding.

Pretty boring but I've never done it.

14. Go scuba diving.

I'm from the Ocean State so I guess I should see the ocean up close and personal.

15. Learn how to line dance.

There's actually a barn in my state that does line dancing, so this one will definitely get crossed off.

16. Go kayaking.

All this water around me and I haven't done a lot of the water activites.

17. Stay the night in a haunted hotel room.

I bet if I got my friends to come with me, it would be like the Suite Life of Zach and Cody episode, minus the ghost coming out of the wall but you never know.

18. Get my palms read.

Because who doesn't want to know their future.

19. Go to a medium.

Like a medium that can communicate with people that have died.

20. Take a helicopter ride.

Air plane: check Helicopter:....

21. Sleep under the stars.

Because sleeping in a tent is more like glamping than camping

22. Just to try new things in my everyday life.

Whether it's trying a new restaurant, getting something different at my usual restaurants, changing my usual style, going on the scary rides at amusement parks, and bringing things I used to do back into my life now.

Cover Image Credit:

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To My High School Senior Self, With The Reassurance She Never Got

If only we could turn back time and just reassure ourselves that it will all be OK.

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Dear Pre-Graduate Francesca,

This is it. You're graduating high school this week, and it all feels like it really isn't happening and that these past four years have really gone by in a blink of an eye. Well, that feeling is going to linger on graduation day and it is going to be the one time in your life that you actually feel like the moments are playing like a dream right before your eyes. You will cry while your sister does your hair ("I don't know why I'm crying right now, I think it's just hitting me all at once") and immediately regret not getting that spray tan to match your outfit. You'll feel great anyways, though, and you'll be super happy being around your friends that day, too.

Speaking of friends, you do not have to worry about your number one concern for college AT ALL. You're going to remain close with everyone you want to and even get closer with some of them. Some friends you won't see as much anymore but will definitely talk to them and meet up once in a while, and that is all that matters. You may even distance yourself from some of them with good purpose but even then things are awesome between you and them, and you even reconnect with an old bestie that you realize you can never live life without.

As you know, high school taught you to live in the moment because it all goes by so fast. Right now, I cannot believe my freshman year of college is already over. Your brain will start to think in "semester mode" rather than a 10-month school year calendar, and that comes along with looking at time from a college perspective. You don't even look at the date every day as much as you used to, but you really want to start because time seems to be going by faster now.

Here are some confessions I'm going to tell you to ease your worries: no you didn't go to a college party, you have made some friends you see keeping in touch with in the upcoming years, you're finding your place in different clubs and activities, you are in the right major and you will still have music in your academics somehow. You've had plenty of freak outs throughout the school year (as expected) and had your fair share of good and bad professors already. And as much as you wanted the spring semester to end, you already kind of miss it while writing this.

As much as you worry about it and everything else, you are right where you need to be at MSU. You may second-guess yourself every now and then about it, but you can't picture yourself anywhere else. You have decided to take musical theater as a minor, and you've never felt more excited about school than this. You're even considering drama school as a post-grad, so who knows what exciting things the future has in store?

I wish I could tell you to take in every last bit of high school. I wish I could tell you to forget about this crush you have now because it's not all you hoped it would be and you're going to feel something amazing down the line that you never have before. I wish I could tell you that you'll miss seeing all your friends every day more than anything, and to learn to appreciate that now. I wish I could tell you that you're going to go through some of the most insane and wonderful experiences you have ever gone through in your life within the next twelve months and that you're going to grow more than ever before. I wish I could tell you that you're not going to be able to imagine life as it were before, because you have gotten so close with certain people and you've experienced too much to ever want go back to how it all used to be. I wish I could tell you a lot of things, but that isn't how time- or life, for that matter- works.

As much as you'd hate to admit it, you'll miss LHS and your fellow classmates. You'll always wish you had a videotape of everything that has happened these past four years to look back on- good and bad. At least you have photographs, written letters, Snapchat memories, your friends and your recollections to help you out in the meantime.

All in all, you are going to be more than OK within a year's time. You'll still be overthinking every little detail about everything in your life, but you will still have your best friends and family to support you through it all. You're still you, Cesc, but becoming the best version of yourself each and every day.

High school was quite an adventure, but your next one is already turning out to be something else. Your graduation cap didn't let you down with that one — trust me. Congratulations!

Sincerely,

Content College You :)

Cover Image Credit:

Francesca DiPisa

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