This is Real Life- I’m Finally Graduating!

As I sit here and reflect on this being my last day of college classes- I am excited, nervous, relieved, proud, and ready for whatever is to come next! My college career did not start off on a strong note. I was a confused, scared high-school graduate who had no real guidance about what to do next.

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I was nowhere near as academically gifted as my older sister and had little to no financial support. These factors led me to settling for attending a community college to obtain my Associate’s Degree. Although this did not mark the highlight of my college career, it did ignite a flame in my motivation that high school never could have. I could choose the classes that I was interested in and the subjects I chose to explore further. I was in charge of my own education and that inspired me. Before completing my technical program in Radiographic Technology, I got a feeling that I wasn’t working to the best of my abilities. This is the moment that I decided to explore my options at UNCW.

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Three years later, I am so pleased to say this was one of the best decisions of my life. Although I felt a sense of giving up on my first venture, I knew that there was something so much greater waiting for me at UNCW. This amazing opportunity was found within the Communication Studies Department, the place I have called my “home” for some time. This department has allowed me to broaden my knowledge on the complex world of communication and managing relationships. My classmates and professors have inspired me to find the “real me” and be okay with exactly who I am. They have motivated me to keep going when I thought something was too hard, they showed me support and encouragement I had never known. My education and experience in this field have molded me into a strong, confident communicator. Although I do not have my next step lined up, I know that wherever life takes me I will be able to represent any organization or employer professionally and efficiently.

To those who may not be sure about their path in the Communication Studies Department, I encourage you to never give up. Even through tough group projects, never ending data inquiry assignments, and haunting clicker questions- you will find your chance to shine. You are valued as an individual and a communicator in this department, and that is something that has motivated me to succeed.

I look forward to what is to come after graduation, as well as the opportunity to remain an active and involved alumni member of UNCW. Although my career may take me to places across the world, I will still always be a beach girl at heart!

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Congrats to the December 2016 graduating class! Although some of us may have been a little late to the party- we were always the life of the party!

CHEERS and Best Wishes!

-Elizabeth Guy

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