Kind of relieved, kind of absolutely terrified: how do you feel about graduating this year?

It is with mixed emotions that I commence my last four weeks of university – well, actually only two if you don’t count Easter. Either way, I cannot pinpoint whether I feel completely relieved, sad, overjoyed or terrified. It is definitely a mixture of all four, but mostly the latter. I am terrified. Absolutely terrified about graduating. I feel like I should totally have my shit together already; a job lined up, an idea of whether I will be staying in the South or heading back up North, and have a head full of confidence as I approach the end of my education. However, I honestly feel completely scared shitless.

Right now I am balancing the stress of grades, final essays and the overbearing pressure of starting to apply for jobs. Yet it feels like I should be prioritising some things over others…I mean, how am I even supposed to achieve my dream type of job if I do not get the grades I am aiming for anyways? So really, I am spending my last four weeks of university with my head down and a determination to do these last few pieces of coursework justice. I have a whole summer to both enjoy my new found educational freedom and apply for jobs, right? Job applications are not something to be rushed and right now, I know that is exactly what they would be. So for me, it just seems logical to concentrate on what is important right now.

Additionally, there is the case of me actually having no clue what I really want to do anymore. Of course, I am interested in a wide range of things and fashion communications is still at the heart of my goals as it always has been. It is just a case of where do I want to be? What role is best for me? Will I have to spend my time doing an unpaid internship just to put my foot in the door? I am obviously more than keen to do that if that is what it takes, but as all these questions whiz around my head, I do worry that I am distracting myself from what is important right now; graduating.

The thought of potentially having one last summer in Oxford is honestly heart-breaking and I am really looking forward to enjoying the city in its summer glory and working plenty of hours to save up before my student tenancy is up. Then what though? This is all that is spinning around mine and most likely every other final year students heads right now.

As terrified as I may be, I am looking forward to investing my time to applying for jobs and I guess, with no plans to do a masters, it is hard looking around and seeing some peers who actually know what they are doing come September because it is all set in stone. Yet, this is what I need to stop doing right now. I cannot compare myself to others once I graduate. Everyone’s success happens at different paces and lengths of time. Some get lucky and some have to work extremely hard. Yet, I’m a big believer in fate my friends. I know that no matter how my journey may go, whether fast or slow to start, I know that it will happen when it is meant to happen. I have a hugely supportive family and group of friends around me, a hell of a lot of experience up my sleeve and a determination that will always ensure I keep going no matter if I get rejected a few times here or there.

There are supposed to be ups and down, that is life. No matter how much the ten emails a day from TARGETJobs may piss me off, these options are always there, jobs are always there. There is always something, even if it just acts as the means to start a career before you work yourself up to doing something great.

Boy, this got deep. I just think it needs to be said. I know a lot of students feel the same pressure and I guess, pride and determination when it comes to graduating and moving on from university. Yet, it is really just the start of another fun and exciting journey that will have just as many difficult and complicated times as university did. Maybe you won’t have the comfort of drinking ten VK’s every Wednesday night to distract you anymore or house full of your best friends to rant to but you should stand by every choice you make once you graduate. It is all going to work out in the end anyways.

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