So, You're Graduating in a Few Weeks...

When they say these four years are going to fly by… they mean it. One minute, you're sitting in your dorm chatting with the roommate you just met and the next you're accepting your diploma. Where did the time go? Have I enjoyed college and taken advantage of every opportunity?

I'm not a fan of endings, which is why I bawled like a baby when I just finished watching Gilmore Girls for the first time. The series culminates with Rory graduating from Yale and watching it so close to my own graduation really hit home. It made me want to don my grad cap, cry, drink a bottle of champagne, and hug my mom all at the same time. But, I also realized that there are many lessons that that I learned from Gilmore Girls that go hand-in-hand with graduation.

It’s not the end, just a new beginning.

College was no doubt an incredible experience. In San Luis Obispo, it’s easy to get lost in the fantastic little world that we have created. Everything here is taken care of for us and being in college is kind of like a safety net. You know what you're doing every day, where you're going, what homework you have to do and what tests to study for. It gives you a structure for your life, and in one day that's all gone. But college has prepared us; we've been on our own for four (and a half) years, and now we get the chance to be on our own without the pressure of school. Jobs, traveling, marriage, new places to live and more are all in our future. Personally, I feel that four years of college was enough. I am ready to head out in the big, bad real world. Hope you are, too.

You don't have to have it all figured out.

In Gilmore Girls, Rory freaks out because she doesn't have anything lined up after graduation. Getting a job is a lot harder than she'd anticipated. Contrary to her belief, however, you don't have to know what you're doing. Just because you've graduated college doesn't mean you automatically know that you want to be an underwater basket weaver for the rest of your life. If you're a little lost, there are a ton of things to do with your time that will also help you figure things out: traveling, getting a part time job, spending time with family or even just relaxing after spending your entire life subjected to being in school. The world will not end if you take some time for yourself.

Take advantage of the time you have left.

Graduating in the winter is a little tricky, since it's in the middle of the year and we still have leases for our houses/apartments. Some people will leave San Luis Obispo almost immediately, while some (ooh, pick me!) will be staying. But whether or not you're leaving, nothing will ever be the same again. You won't see Susie on the way to class every Tuesday morning at 10:15am sharp, there will be no more trips to the library or late night cram sessions with SLO DO CO. Things are going to change. With just three weeks left, we need to appreciate our friends and the memories we've made, and keep making more. Live it up! College is a time in your life when you don't want to regret the things you've done (or didn't do!)

Writing this article was hard. It hasn't really sunk in that we're graduating, that our lives are changing so drastically. Another period of our lives is coming to a close. But SLO is only one small town in a big world; there is so much out there for us to see and experience. Things are changing, but wherever I go, SLO, Cal Poly, my sorority, and my friends will go with me.