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

It has been brought to my attention by literally everybody I know that I am graduating university this upcoming spring. It is a thought that lives in the back of my mind constantly and is always somehow a conversation starter with others. 

“So, you’re graduating!” they’ll say. 

“Yup, hopefully,” I’ll reply. 

“What are you doing after?” 

And this is where the other person will slowly walk away as I blankly stare at a wall. 

How did I get here? I swear it was only yesterday when I helped my family pack up our truck and head west to London, giddy as ever. I remember having a fresh haircut and  a little bit of makeup on (but not too much) as I unpacked my things in my new dorm at Western. Now, I’m trying to cram four assignments in one night, haven’t cleaned my room in ages, don’t remember the last time I had a haircut, and have accumulated dark circles under my eyes. 

I am looking forward to graduating, I’ll be honest. I feel as if I have served my sentence long enough. But that doesn’t mean I’m not terrified to leave. Oh man, I am terrified. I mean, I’ve been a student since I was four years old. It’s an identity I’ve made of myself, and now, it’ll be gone. Just like that! Not a student any longer. 

But Sarah, why don’t you go to grad school? Then you’ll continue living out your student identity further!

See, here’s the thing. I know for a fact that graduate school isn’t for me. At least, not right now. I adore every one of my friends who are applying for graduate school. You rock, look at you go. But me? I can’t do it. The idea of going through another two years of higher education (or maybe longer, who knows) to learn about something I may not even be passionate about is a concerning thought for me. Yes, I’m nervous for the end of undergrad, but I don’t want to entertain the idea of graduate school. 

Sometimes, I feel a bit worried that I am not applying to any programs for September of 2020. 

But I know I’m making the right decision. Grad school isn’t in the cards right now. I need a break. I deserve a break. I want to experience life as it’s meant to be experienced. I want to be on my own. I want to write whatever I want, I want to travel to different places, I want to search for jobs that inspire me and I want to grow all on my own. I don’t think grad school can teach me these things. But even if it can, I want to learn them on my own. 

Maybe in a few years I’ll start looking into graduate programs. But for now, I am set on exploring my life in a way that I never have before. I’ll be able to freely express myself with my writing, and submit it anywhere (that will take it) without worrying about a grade. I’ll be able to stay up late for days working on projects without the burden of exams around the corner. I’ll find a job, work there for a couple months, hate it, find another job, hate that one a little less, then find an even better job later on, until I find the job I’m meant to have. I’ll work on my life until it becomes what it’s meant to be. 

Yes, I’m terrified for what will come. Not knowing what the future holds is terrifying. It will always be a scary thought. And after I graduate Western and leave all of these memories behind, it will suck. There’s no other way to put it. It’s gonna suck to leave this place. 

But I want to know what comes next. I want to know what comes after school. What is real life even like? I’ve realized that I don’t actually know. 

It’s time for me to find out.

I’ll miss you, Western. Thanks for an incredible four years. I hope I do you proud.

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Sarah Minos

Western '20

Student at Western, studying English and Creative Writing. Loves music and books. Hopes to be a professional writer some day!
This is the contributor account for Her Campus Western.