As a 21-year-old fresh out of univer­sity, I am con­stantly be­ing bom­barded with ques­tions about what I plan on do­ing with my de­gree. I am very ex­cited to have fin­ished this chap­ter of life, but am un­sure of where my life is headed and what kind of ca­reer I want to pur­sue. If it were up to me, I would like to take a year to re­lax (con­sid­er­ing I just fin­ished four of the most de­mand­ing, but also fun, years of my life) and maybe start to fig­ure it all out. How­ever, I feel ob­li­gated to have my en­tire life fig­ured out al­ready, con­stantly pres­sured by the ques­tions posed by my par­ents, and even strangers, when I ex­press that I’ve just fin­ished my post-sec­ondary ed­u­ca­tion. Are there any words of wis­dom you can pro­vide to help a strug­gling grad­u­ate get through this? HE SAID: First of all, con­grat­u­la­tions on your de­gree. I agree, post-sec­ondary ed­u­ca­tion is a fun time of your life, how­ever the de­mand­ing na­ture of most pro­grams can leave you feel­ing ex­hausted af­ter four years. Ed­u­ca­tion is an im­por­tant fac­tor of life, but it may not have all the an­swers you are look­ing for. If you are un­sure of your ca­reer path, tak­ing some time off to ex­plore op­tions can be ben­e­fi­cial in the long run, al­low­ing you to fully com­mit and be con­tent with the op­tion cho­sen. You can also uti­lize this time to pur­sue ac­tiv­i­ties you couldn’t be­fore be­cause of school­ing such as trav­el­ing the world! This is the per­fect time to ex­plore all pos­si­ble out­comes of your life, and you never know where you can be­come inspired. SHE SAID: Fresh out of univer­sity can be a scary time. Pres­sures to find em­ploy­ment are el­e­vated, while re­spon­si­bil­i­ties and obli­ga­tions start piling up. Gone are the party days of univer­sity, and you need to start fig­ur­ing out ex­actly where you want to har­ness your energy. You may of­ten find par­ents pres­sur­ing you to get your life in check, but that is just be­cause they want to en­sure you live a ful­fill­ing life. Thor­oughly re­search­ing your ca­reer op­tions and net­work­ing will def­i­nitely help push this process along. Take some time to per­fect your re­sumé, pre­sent­ing the best pos­si­ble ver­sion of your­self. Now would also be a good time to vol­un­teer or find in­tern­ship po­si­tions in your fields of in­ter­est, which can pro­vide you with a glimpse of the in­dus­try you are con­sid­er­ing as a full time ca­reer. Do not be­come over­whelmed with the pres­sures. You need to re­mem­ber that not all peo­ple fol­low the same path, all you need is to find your own and the rest will fol­low suit.

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