Full-time Professional vs. Full-time Student

Before I started graduate school at UW this fall, I was living and thriving as a full-time professional on that Monday-Friday, 8am- 5pm grind. After five years hustling in an office environment, I’m now a part-time intern, and full-time studying, reading and essay-writing student.

I never thought I would say that I actually miss working full-time or that I miss my job, but the truth is I do. I oversaw the day-to-day functions of an office within a Bay Area university and supported the main office executive. Some days I took work home, or stayed in office way past 5pm, and other days I got to leave early and still got paid my full salary. Some days were harder than others, but there are a lot of things I miss/love about being a working professional such as:

  1. FI-NAN-CIAL SE-CUR-ITY! It’s so hard not having a stable salary coming in every month and not being able to just buy whatever I want. Living off student loans and practically minimum wage is not fun.
  2. I miss going on coffee-runs with my work-buddy and sitting in the student union and spilling all the inter-office tea.
  3. Having premium health care coverage. While I still have insurance as a student, there’s nothing better than knowing you have full coverage on all things health-related, especially when your employer is paying for the majority of it.
  4. Having a set schedule. I know it sounds boring, but I thrive on having a routine.
  5. Not having to study or worry about completing two essays and an infinite amount of reading from one day to the next.

On the flipside, being a full-time student again isn’t so bad and here’s why:

  1. I get to take classes with other students who also value higher education and want to make it better.
  2. I get to learn something new every time I’m in class on subjects that I’m passionate about and hear about different perspectives and experiences.
  3. Being able to sleep-in, because class not starting until the late afternoon is the greatest, especially when having to pull an all-nighter the night before.
  4. It’s more socially acceptable to wear lounge clothes to class than in the workplace.
  5. There’re always endless amounts of free swag, food (especially pizza), and not to mention several companies/services that offer student pricing.

So, for those who are just starting their college careers, enjoy it while you can and soak it all in– it doesn’t last forever. However, keep in mind adulting has its upsides too.