It’s Okay If Your Post-Grad Plans Change

Thinking about what happens after you graduate college can be scary. The possibilities are endless after having a defined path for most of your life. Most students get a job or go to graduate school. It’s the first time to do what you want without any pre-defined structure.

For me, I had a vision of what my life would look like post grad. I’ve wanted to be a doctor since third grade. I thought I had everything set in stone. I entered college as a biology major on the pre-med track and was set on going to medical school after graduation. I thought that I’d end up delaying my personal life for a few years to complete medical school and residency.

This all changed when I realized that this path might not be for me. I didn’t do too well in General Chemistry 2 and eventually had to withdraw from the class. I barely passed General Chemistry 1. Since I had some experience with programming from my high school’s robotics club and took AP Computer Science, I switched to majoring in computer science. This was a very tough decision for me to make since I had wanted to be a doctor for a large chunk of my life. I had a feeling of defeat realizing that I wasn’t able to follow my dream, but over time, I accepted the change in my path. Changing majors in college is very common, and I shouldn’t feel bad about it. I can still make an impact on the world with computer science because technology plays a large role in our society.

I spent my third year of college abroad at the University of Leeds in England. By spending time away from everything I knew back home, I had a lot of time to myself to think. I started to question whether I actually wanted to go to graduate school or if I was doing it for the sake of getting another degree. I realized that I was eager to begin working and applying my knowledge from school to better the world. I wanted to take a break from school and become financially independent. Seeing my peers take the GRE this year and begin grad school applications made we wonder if I had made the right decision. But after some time, I felt strong and confident about the decision that I came to. My current plan is to get a software engineering job for a year or so and then apply to grad school later. There’s no standard time frame, though, and I hope to make the most of my final year of college.

If you‘re feeling uncertain about your post-grad plans, remember that there’s no “correct” path for after college, and you should do what’s best for you. Do your research and get insight from others. Take some time to think about what you want. Don’t be afraid to try new things if you are unsatisfied with where you currently are. College is a time for self-discovery, so take advantage of this time to figure out what you really want out of life.