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Junior Year: Dealing with the Impending Doom of Life Post-College

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at West Chester chapter.

Junior year is tricky. You’re more than halfway through your college career, but you’re not quite at the beginning of a career search. Some people may be searching for internships, while others feel stuck and antsy, ready to graduate and start their life. I am both. I still have a lot to do for my degree before I graduate, but I can’t help but feel like I am stuck. I often find myself anxious to be out of school. I want to start my career path, move into my own place, and overall begin to live my life without the stressors of schoolwork. With that being said, I have also found myself terrified for what my life will look like post-college.


I am extremely grateful that I have the opportunity to be able to receive a higher education, especially through an amazing university like West Chester, but the impending doom of what is to come has begun to stress me out beyond belief. Preparing for the future, managing your time, and taking care of yourself are some extremely important steps to deal with the stress you may feel about life after college. There are a few ways to make sure you are taking these steps that have recently helped me a lot.

1. Prepare for your future by visiting the career center at your school.

Career Centers are the perfect way to prepare for a future job or internship searches. At West Chester University, the Career Center offers help with creating resumes and cover letters, lets you schedule mock interviews, and even connects you with alumni from your major to learn about their successes in job searches and to shadow them at their jobs.  Contacting the Career Center at your school can help ease your worries about searching for a job and help you prepare in advance for different opportunities you can take advantage of whether it be for an internship or a career path after graduation.

2. Manage your time by making a schedule.

It is often hard to manage your time and balance different responsibilities in your life. Making a schedule to balance schoolwork and personal time can help you discipline yourself to avoid procrastination and enhance productivity. Be sure to schedule breaks in increments in the middle of doing schoolwork and studying. If you don’t allow yourself to take breaks while you are studying, you may stress yourself out too much and your brain will not retain the information you need it to. Also, scheduling out specific hours and times to do your homework will help you find time to spend with your friends or even with yourself.

3. Take care of yourself by giving yourself alone time.

Making time for friends is important, but it’s also important to take some time to yourself. Whether that alone time is for reflection, relaxation, or mindless purposes is up to you. Reflection can be a time for journaling, drawing, singing, or another creative outlet that helps you clear your mind and helps you reflect on anything you may need to reflect on. Relaxation can be a time to take a nap, meditate, read, or do an activity that soothes you and calms you down from the stress you may currently be feeling. Other mindless activities could include watching something lighthearted on YouTube, Netflix, or another streaming platform, or even simply listening to music. No matter what you choose to do in your alone time, it’s good to be in touch with yourself and to learn to be okay with being alone sometimes. It can be exhausting to constantly be surrounded by people.


There are plenty of other ways to take these steps to deal with the uncertainty of the future, but the examples I provided are some of the ones that have helped me the most. You have to decide what steps to take that will help you.  Increasing your self-awareness will help you figure out how to cope healthily. The future is not promised. That can be a scary thought, but if you prepare for it with a healthy mindset, everything will work itself out.  


Credit: Cover, 1, 2, 3


Emma Piccinini

West Chester '21

Emma Piccinini Major: English Writings Track Minor: Business & Technical Writing West Chester University '21 Senior Chair Editor for HC at West Chester
Katie Shannon

West Chester '21

Katie Shannon is the previous founder and president of Her Campus at West Chester chapter and a proud alumnus of West Chester University (May 2021). She is a marketing, communications, and public relations professional, now located in New York City, with 2+ years of experience at award-winning companies and businesses. This includes working with clientele such as Essence, Pixar, E*Trade, Morgan Stanley, Primark, Google, YouTube, Apple, Microsoft, MaryKay, Extra, Emergen-c, Maybelline, Garnier, Her Campus HQ, and more. As well, she has shared her time at different invite-only networking events at organizations such as National Geographic, Paka, iHeartMedia, Wunderkind, and more. Located in New York City, Katie has contributed her efforts working with Essence's Planet Team organization which primarily centers its efforts on "championing Essence's sustainability targets and delivering inspirational and practical content around the environmental issues we face today and the steps we can take to address them, at home, at work, and in our communities." Her different opportunities have provided a wide range of experience in editorial, management, analytical skillset, comfort with making data-driven decisions, developing and nurturing relationships with existing clients and agencies to generate renewal business, sales & marketing, events/event-planning, community, design, writing, attention to detail, organizational skills, managerial skills, project management skills, social media analytics, SEO, multi-tasking, written and verbal communication skills.