Reminisces Upon Completing (Undergraduate) College

Reminisces Upon Completing (Undergraduate) College

At times, it felt like this day would never come.

Assuming that I passed all my final exams, I am now theoretically finished with my undergraduate degree.

I don’t intend to walk until next spring because the spring graduation at CofC seems absolutely gorgeous, and it is something that I have been looking forward to the whole time that I have been going to this college. I mean, walking in a white cocktail dress, across the cistern and under magnificent spreading oak trees, or across a stage in the TD Arena? It’s a no-brainer.

It’s weird though, I finished my last exam today (which, since this article won’t post for a little while, I will point out that today is December the 13th), and I don’t necessarily feel any different yet.

I got myself a pizza, a six-pack, candy and other assorted junk food on the way home today, as I intended to celebrate through gluttony (it is a Wednesday, after all, can’t get toooo crazy).

But even as I am consuming that, I still feel like a tightly-wound ball of stress.

I feel like there is something I need to be doing, like tonight is just the equivalent of one night off.

And when I turned in the books that I had rented this semester, I felt a little sad, which is funny because I have been desperately awaiting the end of this semester since basically right before midterms (this semester felt particularly rough for some reason).

But it is like, in the midst of having so much due, yeah it can be somewhat horrible, but now, I am sitting here like…now what?

I mean, yeah, I need to update my resume. And I can sleep and finally watch all those movies and shows I have been putting off because I don’t have the time, and I can read all those books that I’ve been stockpiling for the same reason, but having completed my degree, well, it is a bittersweet feeling.

It is all over so fast, all at once.

Of course, if I really miss it that much, there’s always grad school, right?

Cover Image Credit: Aracelia Skridulis

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Finals week is finally upon us. The time every college student has dreaded all semester and there is no avoiding it. Let the stress, tears, and sleepless nights commence. Here's Finals Week as Told by Schmidt.

1. When you walk into the library and see that there are no more spots available because every freshman decided to start using the library now.

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2. You run into someone from your class and they ask you how prepared you are for the final.

3. Your first meltdown begins...

4. And then you get a call from your parents asking you why you've been so on edge lately

5. When you're three coffees deep at 2AM and believe everything will be okay even though you still haven't studied.

6. The day has arrived and it's time to take your first final so you give yourself a quick pep talk.

7. When you are the first one to finish the final early because you didn't study.

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Why Writing Is Still Important

I don't need to create a New York Times Bestseller.

I came to college as an English major. I did a really bad job of exploring colleges, and I really tried to avoid the topics at all costs. I didn’t want to think about leaving high school and all the people I had grown up with. I didn’t know what I wanted to do with my life, so I picked something I liked and was good at: English.

Little to my knowledge, my College Composition I class was taught by a Writing Arts grad student. On the first day of class, we went through the usual icebreakers, and it wasn’t until he told us about himself that I realized Writing Arts was a thing. I didn’t even know Rowan offered it.

He told us that he was working on a novel, and he taught this class as part of the program. I don’t know, I could have those details wrong. After he mentioned writing a novel, my world sort of stopped. I never considered being a writer until that point.

I talked to advisors, and within two days, I was a Writing Arts major. But I know that it’s a major that produces funny looks because college is about getting educated and a degree so that you can get a stable job as an adult.

Life as a writer is never guaranteed. I’ll never have a stable job or income, but I’m okay with that.

I don’t care if I never have a New York Times Bestseller. I don’t want to be a writer to make a shitload of money. I want to be a writer to inspire readers. The greatest thing an author, of any kind, can do is elicit emotion in readers.

I want to make readers hate characters and fall in love with others. I want readers to make up their own stories based on my characters because they can’t help but imagine them in a hundred different situations.

I have a bookshelf that is filled edge to edge of stories that have made me cry, cheer, and throw a book across the room. I’ve had to take a break from reading just to digest the story. I’ve stayed up in the middle of the night because it’s only 50 pages until the ending.

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