Thoughts of Last Semester Seniors

As the semester quickly starts to come to an end, every once in a while I stop to think about how this is my last semester of college. It’s crazy to think that in just a few weeks, I’ll be graduating and moving past this chapter of my life. It’s tough for me to wrap my head around because completing virtual classes in a pandemic has really changed what college is like and I feel as if I lost my senior year. I also transferred to MSU in the fall of 2019 from a community college, so I only had about one “normal” semester of college before everything changed. There’s no point in dwelling in what didn’t live up to my expectations in the past, and now I’m focusing on my life after graduating. 

I know many of my friends and classmates feel the same way and are both excited and scared to graduate, so I asked a few of them some questions about what their plans for the near future are and their thoughts about graduating college. 

My classmate and fellow Her Campus Montclair member Camryn Chernick, is a Communications Studies major who spent 3 years at MSU as a fitness instructor at the Rec Center, and joined HCM this past year.

How do you feel about graduating in May?

“I’m excited and proud of myself because I completed college despite the fact there was a pandemic. I’m disappointed though that a year and a half of my college experience was lost due to the same pandemic and I feel like I missed out on a lot of memories because of that. I’m not ready to let go of the college experience but I’m happy to leave the academic world behind for a little bit.”

What advice do you have to give to underclassmen?

“When you’re not exactly sure what you want to do with your life, a lot of people give you unsolicited advice. Something I wish I had done was just made up a career path so I would have an answer to give people who weren’t as significant in my life so they could back off and not risk saying mean comments about my actual dreams. College is such a time for transformation and learning about yourself and when there’s a lot of unwanted feedback and sometimes even negative opinions being thrown your way it can really set you back. Trust your instincts and listen to your heart because only you know what’s best for you.”

After college, Camryn hopes to work for Disney or do work in the yoga realm. Camryn stresses making sure you are taking care of your mental health and know that it’s okay to get help. Camryn says “I feel that I missed out on so much of my college experience because I was so burnt out. If you’re doing things like regularly crying, having really sad thoughts, having barely any motivation or hardly eating, etc., get away from the people who are telling you that it’s fine. Your mental health matters and you should be able to live the best life possible for yourself and not for anyone else.” Remember to take time to make sure you’re happy doing what you’re doing and that’s all that matters. 

Tara Byrne, Her Campus Montclair President and Fashion Studies major, is excited to graduate and have wonderful memories of college to look back on. 

How do you feel about graduating in May?

“I am so excited to graduate and begin a new chapter of my life, but it is very bittersweet. I will miss many aspects of college life.”

What are your plans after graduating?

“I am going to focus on myself, try new activities, and am hoping to travel way more!” 

What advice do you have to give to underclassmen?

“Enjoy every second of college life because it goes by so fast! Get involved and put yourself out there, you never know who you will meet or what you can accomplish!”

Alma Cats is a Public Relations major and was a part of Lambda Pi Eta Honor Society, PRSSA, Hawk Communications, Red Hawk Sports Network, and Red Hawk Catholic while at MSU. She feels “sad/happy/relieved” about graduating this month. 

What are your plans after graduating?

“Having a full-time internship in the summer! Spending time with friends and family back at home before I move into my first apartment. Spending one last summer at the shore!” 

What advice do you have to give to underclassmen?

Enjoy every second of undergrad because it goes by too quickly. Enjoy those in-person classes next year and take advantage of networking with your classmates because you never know who you might need in the future. Join every club possible because not only will it look great on your resume but it’s another great networking opportunity.” 

Blanca Cats is a Nutrition & Food Science major and also the volunteer coordinator for Montclair State Dietetics Organization. 

How do you feel about graduating in May?

“it’s very bittersweet!”

What are your plans after graduating?

“I plan on taking the summer to enjoy time with family and friends before becoming a “real” adult”

What advice do you have to give to underclassmen?

“LIVE IN THE MOMENT! These college days flew by and I wish I lived in the moment more”

 

As for me, I’m very relieved to be graduating. It’s bittersweet but after dealing with virtual classes during a pandemic, I’m looking forward to graduating and figuring out what’s next. I plan to take this summer to focus on myself, re-discovering some interests that I’ve put off because of school work and burnout, and safely traveling to places I’ve always wanted to visit now that I have the time and will be vaccinated. I’m nervous but excited for what’s to come. Graduating from college can be scary, but know that you're not alone.