Today was my last day of college classes! The text books will get sold back to the bookstore shortly, the notebooks will get tucked away and graduation is so close I can smell the freedom of no more school work or projects. My time at UNCW has been a journey. Like any journey there are ups and downs, triumphs and tribulations, tears of joy and tears of pain but I took them in stride and persevered the toughest circumstances I had faced. There have been moments where I wanted to give up, but that is life. The hard times are exactly what it says HARD, but it is how you venture through those times where you succeed and they can only make you stronger and a better person. Absolutely nothing is going to hit us as hard as life. But is it not about how hard you get hit, it’s about how hard you can get hit, and keep moving forward. But we have to be willing to take the hits, and not point fingers saying you are not where you are because of him, cowards do that and that is now me, that is not those of us who are in this graduating class of 2011.
I can’t think of a more tenacious, more courageous graduating class that the one. It is finally here, all of the hard work has paid off. We all have been prepared on what to expect after graduation, searching aimlessly for jobs hoping to get a bite on the line of resumes we send out. We have compiled our portfolios full of artifacts with our best work, so we should be set right? Well somewhat. We are well prepared an well-rehearsed on how to approach the challenging interview questions, but we are about to enter a new chapter. This new chapter no longer has a safety net or someone to hold our hand, it is the real world where we have a choice to sink or swim. The world is my oyster and is anxiously waiting for me to reveal my talents.
I am very proud of myself and of my achievements I have had at UNCW. I have had several phenomenal mentors who have provided me with the building blocks of who I evolved into becoming. THANKS MOM, MY #1 FAN!!! It has not been easy being pulled in so many different directions by so many responsibilities. But I muddled through, and I held tightly onto my dream and now that dream is a beautiful reality and a sign of a wonderful tomorrow. The plans of jobs are distant. Applications have been sent and few call backs and interview are in the midst of being scheduled. I know that most of us are concerned about our future, but there’s no need to worry. The economy is booming, the job market is wide open, the planet is just fine. It’s going to be great…… well here is to wishful thinking. But I am hopeful dreamer.
The torch can now be passed along to others. My work here is now complete. Here are a few tips for those to who are about to embark on their new chapter.
• Think outside the box to fill the box.
• Don’t stop learning, keep trying to excel and grow.
• Don’t miss an opportunity because of a prior commitment or class. (Sorry professors) Take advantage of everything you are given. You may kick yourself later.
• Don’t ever let someone tell you, you can’t do something. Protect each dream and find the path that will lead you to it. If you want something go get it. PERIOD!
• There are many roads we can take in life, there are also paths, and some trails, and some paths that turn into roads that then turn into trails. I guess what I’m saying is life is a journey and you can go whichever direction you want.
• It is easy to slack off, but don’t do it. Taking the extra steps now will make things better in the long run.
• Don’t say you can’t, because you can. It may be HARD, but deal with it.
• Don’t be a lizard brain. If you are unfamiliar with any of Seth Godin’s books or blog, a lizard brain is simply saying how you want one thing, but you do something else. That’s a bad characteristic trait to have and does not look well on anyone.
To conclude live each day by this quote from Ellen DeGeneres it has always put things into perspective for me. “Life is like one big Mardi Gras. But instead of showing your boobs, show people your brain, and if they like what they see, you’ll have more beads than you know what to do with.”