Tag Archives: Graduation

Day 336 – So You’re About To Graduate College…

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Yesterday afternoon, I spent some time browsing my Facebook and Twitter feeds and was overwhelmed by the amount of “Last undergrad class…EVER!” posts and tweets I saw. And I had a few reactions:

1) Congrats on making it to your last class! I slept through mine.

2) I’m not old enough to NOT be the youngest person in the workforce.

3) Where the hell did this year go?

I started this blog almost a full year ago to track my journey through my first post-graduate year and I’m in disbelief that I’m almost at Day 365. (*Note – I clearly did some math wrong along the way because on May 12th, the day after graduation, it will not be day 365. But don’t worry. Those of us in PR don’t really need to know numbers. Or counting.) But I guess I better start believing it, because I’m going to have to stop telling people I “just graduated college” and switched to “I graduated last year” when they ask what I’ve been doing with my life.

Anyways, now that I’m an expert in city life post-college (LOL), I’m gonna share with you youngin’s some fun facts and can’t-miss tips on how to get through year one of post-grad life. This is a compilation of my best advice in one list, SO LISTEN UP!!

10. Never underestimate the importance of Happy Hour.

Because it’s amazing. It’s cheap drinks, it’s handsome business-boys in shirts and ties, it’s like day-drinking sort of cause the sun is sometimes still out – essentially it’s everything I want in one place. Happy Hour becomes the go-to for dates, mini-reunions and hang outs. Because what you’ll come to realize is the “Come over and pregame before we go out on Thursday!” just won’t really excite people anymore, but “Wanna grab a few drinks after work on Thursday?” rolls off the tongue much more nicely.

9. Realize that you’re probably going to gain weight. Get a gym membership.

It starts slow. You start meeting up with friends for “a few drinks after work” a few times a week. You browse Yelp and find some cute new dinner spots. The weather gets cold, and Seamless comes into your life. You start ordering your lunch to the office – delivery. You sit at a desk from 9-5. Since it’s cold, you’re wearing layers. So no one’s noticing those extra pounds. All of a sudden, spring hits and your shorts are quiteeeee a bit tighter than they were last year. Yeah, it happens. Counteract it best you can by joining a gym or at the very least, going for a run once and a while. No matter how much it hurts.

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8. Learn how to budget your money.

Seriously. While my waistline was getting wider because of the above reasons, my wallet was getting thinner. If I had $5 for every time I wished I had taught myself the importance of saving money I wouldn’t have to worry about saving money. Maybe people are just generally better at this than me, but I would’ve loved to, before graduation, have taken like two seconds to remember that a penny earned doesn’t have to immediately become a penny spent.

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7. Visit your Alma Mater at least once (and try not to die while you’re there).

Homecoming. Go to it. Or any other random weekend. Visiting your college in the year following your graduation is like Christmas but better because it’s not cold and everyone actually really excited to see each other! It’s a mini-vacation, the closest thing you’ll get to Spring Break in your post-college career. The sub-point of advice within this point of advice – when drinking, don’t try to keep up with the college kids. Why? See my next point…

6. Drinking is harder. Learn how to adapt.

You’ll need to come to the conclusion on your own that you can’t drink nearly as much as you could in college after a few months at home. Between waking up early to get to work and just getting generally out of drinking shape, your 4-nights-a-week college rage-fests just don’t fit into a post-grads schedule. Instead, embrace new drinking activities, like Brunch, to fill the void left from giving up Tuesday night ladies nights or Thursday night binges. Believe me, being hungover at work is not a condition you want to be in often.

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5. Know that G-Chat is the new Facebook chat.

Yes, being in almost-constant communication with your besties remains important following college. So where group-texts fail (who can deal with their iPhone vibrating on their desk all day long?) and where Facebook reads ‘unprofessional,’ G-Chat becomes convenient and perfectly work-place acceptable. It was the most valuable secret of post-grad life. Inconspicuous chat windows can be disguised as e-mail drafts, all those super-important messages you’re about to send out to clients and colleagues. No one needs to know that it’s really links to your favorite BuzzFeed articles and other NSFW things. It’s a gem. A diamond in the rough. So necessary.

4. Enjoy being single.

Because as much as we all just wanted to settle down with a boyfriend after graduation and through most of the winter months (Oh, that was just me? Okay..), people still generally suck at being in relationships. And that’s okay. There are so many YoPros to meet, so many dates to be gone on, and so many fun things like Grouper to experiment with. It’s the most fun time in our lives to be on our own, going out with our friends, having cocktails with bankers and playing beer pong with fratty guys in “Murray Chill.”

3. Invest in a good set of wine glasses. 

You’re going to need them. “Wine nights” become your Sunday-Wednesday nights after college. You don’t need to schedule them like you used to with the roomies. Instead of, “Hey, anyone want to stay in and just have a few glasses of wine tonight?” the question is, “WHERE IS MY WINE OPENER?!” Wine. Always. Wine.

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2a. Go out a lot.

Explore the city, meet new people, try new drinks. There is more to see…than can ever be seen…more to do…than can ever be done…

2b. Stay in a lot.

It’s okay to stay in more, too. And it’s definitely okay to enjoy staying in. Because after a long day of work, sometimes all you want is to cuddle on the couch with your pup and a glass of wine and watch Game of Thrones reruns on Netflix. Which sounds like an ideal Friday night to me.

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1. Enjoy every minute.

While this year was a change, it was truly a great year. The first year out of college is a journey. You meet a ton of new people, have some incredible experiences, some ups, more downs. You’ll gain weight, you’ll lose weight. You’ll get screwed over by some douche you swore you’d never fall for again and refuse to date a nice guy who’d probably be nothing but amazing to you. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll be late to work a few times. But overall, you’ll have a blast. Yes, college was the time of my life, and probably the time of yours too, but the fun doesn’t stop once you move the tassel, I promise. So take advantage of these last few weeks in school, and then feel free to take FULL advantage of the year that lies ahead of you.

Oh, and by the way, CONGRATULATIONS!

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Can’t believe this was a year ago. I miss and love you guys to pieces.

So where does that leave me? A blogger dedicated to exploring one year in post-grad life. I’ve got some ideas….Stay with me and you’ll see how I continue my journey through the blogosphere. 😉 I’m not going anywhere.

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Day 280 – Why I’m Probably Not Going to my High School Reunion

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I received something in the mail a few weeks ago that really brought me back.

Back to a time of few to no responsibilities. A time when your “job” meant working four hour shifts in the mall or at the grocery store. A time when your parents chauffeured you to and from parties. A time when you were convinced your boyfriend of four-months was the man you were going to marry. A time when people were generally shittier versions of their current selves.

High School.

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Ugh, ugly thumb syndrome.

I received the invitation to my 5-year high school reunion and after some thought I think I’ve decided not to go. Why? Because there are just some people that I’m okay with never seeing again. And if life decides to have us cross paths? Okay. But it doesn’t mean I need to subject myself to that happening inside my high school cafeteria.

But for those of you who do plan on going, here’s my prediction on who you’ll be interacting with.

The Five People You’ll See at Your High School Reunion

5. The Principal/Dean/Guidance Counselor

In high school, I used to wear sunglasses on my head as an accessory almost every day (Foreshadowing that I’d be in college in Miami?), and it drove my principal crazy. I’d walk from my locker towards my homeroom and there she’d wait, in the same spot, and swipe them off my head as I walked by. “You’re inside now, Ms. Chuber,” she’d remind me. And I’d nod, wait till she was out of sight, and then push them back onto my head.

Whatever your relationship was with members of authority in high school, chances are you were way more of a douchebag then than you are now. And so you’ll probably have to deal with Past You’s annoying attitude when you interact with these individuals. Maybe you spent a lot of time in detention. Or in the Dean’s office. Or being dramatic to your guidance counselor. Whatever it was, the faculty will definitely remember you because of some particular detail. And they’re going to bring it up, at some point or another. I can hear Sister Kathleen now… “Where are your sunglasses, Kristen? Did you leave them down in Miami? Do you still wear them, whatever the weather?” Yes. Yes I do.

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4. The High School BFF

This is someone that normally, you’d love to catch up with! The girl/guy you were super close to for four years. They’re the person you went out with on the weekends, spent your free periods with planning your Sweet 16, and gossiped with about boys in adjacent bathroom stalls. Yet you two may have drifted, such is life, and years may have passed since you two have spoken. While I personally would enjoy catching up with my high school best friends, within the confines of a high school reunion, it may feel unnatural.

A few things may happen. First, you may experience what any fellow How I Met Your Mother fans will understand as “Revertigo,” where in order to make interaction normal, you revert back to the high school version of yourself. So if you two were notoriously boy crazy, the first thing you would probably ask would be, “So, what’s your guy situation right now??” You’d take MySpace style pictures and maybe even upload them to Facebook. #besties #reunited. Or maybe something came between the two of you in order to end the BFFriendship, and that event/person will be the elephant in the room for the extent of your conversation. Or maybe you’ll assume you can just pick up where you left off and maybe it’ll be much harder than you thought because one of you went through a drastic life change like giving up drinking or going brunette. There’s definitely potential for awkwardness there. So just beware.

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3. The Person Who Not-S0-Secretly Hates You

Whether or not it’s out in the open, there’s that person that you know just isn’t a fan of yours. Maybe it’s because you made fun of them in gym class for being a total weirdo or because you dated her boyfriend after they broke up “even though she said it was okay.” But by no means are you friends, and they’re definitely not trying to be.   You might try to avoid them, or maybe you’ll do the opposite, and try to be overly sweet to make up for your less than happy memories with this person. Regardless, you should probably keep an eye out, in case you’re on their hitlist.

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2. Your High School Worst Enemy

Everyone had a worst enemy in high school. The person that you absolutely could not stand. So much so, that on graduation day, you thanked your lucky stars you’d be rid of her for good. And you’ve managed to avoid her for five years. But here you are, going to your high school reunion, knowing she will be there. It’s not that you care about the drama anymore; after all, it was five years ago. But there is ZERO part of you that wants to see this person. Ever again.

And that’s okay. While most of the problems that existed between high schoolers was based on immaturity and probably just boredom, you don’t need to reach out to every person you disliked in the past and attempt to rekindle a friendship. As long as you can both be civil if and when you run into each other somewhere, that is enough. No need to force a friendship just to prove you’re not the grotsky little beotch you were in 10th grade.

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1. A Horrible Version of Yourself That You Want To Forget Forever

“I was probably the best version of myself in high school,” said no one ever. We all thought we were the coolest thing since ice pops, and let’s face it – we weren’t. I would truly love to shake High School Kristen by her shoulders, letting her giant hoop earrings swing back and forth smacking her in the face, and tell her that she’s a giant tool and to STOP. I want to say, “No, Kristen, you should NOT have a Xanga! Your future college friends are going to find it and never let you live it down!” Being back in my high school, looking at old pictures, and talking about 15 year old me is only going to remind me of how lame and obnoxious everyone was in high school. And by everyone I mean primarily myself.

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So I don’t think I’ll be attending my high school reunion this time around.

I’d rather catch up like normal people. And grab a coffee with someone I recently reconnected with on Facebook. Or get a big group together and go to a bar. And chat about the latest episode of the Bachelor or how hot that guy I dumped in 12th grade got and whether or not the 10th grade English teacher ever hooked up with a student or, my favorite, how awkward our past selves were. And I don’t think I need to pay $50 and feel awkward for 3 hours in order to reunite with people from my past.

Plus, thanks to social media, it’s really easy to reach out and get back in touch with people. If and when I want to reconnect with some friends from the “old days,” its nice to know that everyone is just a Facebook message, a Tweet, a text, or an e-mail away. With the technology available to us, reunions aren’t really necessary anymore. In fact, we probably already know a lot about what everyone has been up to thanks to that technology. I’ve seen your new apartment on Instagram, saw your Tweet about working for Goldman Sachs, and noticed you updated your Facebook to include NYU Medical School under your Education. 

Regardless, I hope everyone has fun. And I’ll strongly consider attention The Mary Louis Academy’s 10-year reunion in 2018 🙂

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The girls who made high school a little less crappy. June 1, 2008.

Day Three – The Glass Door Problem

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Ever see someone walk straight into a glass door, face first? They thought it was open because they could see through it, and didn’t realize there was a closed door there until it was too late?

Well, that’s kind of how I feel about my life right now.

It’s taken me three days to write my first post on this blog because I have been on an emotional roller coaster since walking across the stage and shaking hands with Donna Shalala, President of the University of Miami, on Friday afternoon at Graduation. There was obviously the initial excitement of being done with college after four long years of papers, professors, and presentations. But that was immediately replaced with confusion, panic, and a feeling of being completely lost. Literally, I almost didn’t understand how to process out of the Bank United Center. They needed to shuffle me out in the right direction as Pomp and Circumstance blared over the speakers. Then everything went into fast motion, and the next few hours were filled with flashes from cameras, pats on the back, some tears from close friends, and glasses of champagne. 

Saturday was no better. With my family still in town, it was hard to really comprehend that I was actually a college graduate. We spent the day at Marlins Park watching the Mets fry some fish before I dropped them at the airport that evening. But Saturday night my roommate took me to dinner with her family, and so reality still wasnt hitting. 

And then it hit. Hard. Walked straight into the glass door. Sunday afternoon around 3 p.m, my friend Claudy found me in the fetal position on the floor of my bedroom in tears, surrounded by half-packed suitcases, trash bags, and piles of laundry. I had been attempting to pack my bedroom, and everything in it that defined the past four years of my life, into Home Depot boxes to ship back to New York and all at once I realized that it was actually ending. The multitude of emotions that I had been juggling just all smushed together into one big blob of depression and I just couldn’t hold it in anymore. And so yesterday clearly wasn’t the day to start a blog, unless I wanted the first post to be the script to a soap opera. 

So, here I am now, almost 24 hours later, and I’m doing a little better. My room is mostly packed up, we donated a lot of our old furniture to Goodwill, and although the morning I leave Miami is going to be really rough emotionally, I think I’ll eventually be okay. 

If there’s one thing this weekend has shown me, it’s that I’m definitely still a kid. Twenty-two years young, and afraid of the real world, the post-college world. The last four years have been the best of my life. I’ve made lots of mistakes, but even more friends. I managed not to burn down the house I shared with my 5 current roommates, which is impressive. (You’d understand if you knew my roommates.) I held internships, joined a sorority, was inducted into an honor society, and wrote lots of papers. I explored the city of Miami, tanned on Key Biscayne and partied at South Beach clubs. I spent my last spring break in Las Vegas, and went to every Miami Hurricanes home football game. But now, I guess, shit’s about to get real. I’m not a student anymore. I’ll eventually need to get a real job, my own apartment, and the impossible – a boyfriend. 

And that’s exactly why I decided to start this blog. To track my journey over the next year, and be able to look back and see how far I’ve come. So if anyone’s interested in taking the journey with me, check back once and a while to see where I’m at. Let’s just hope next time you check in, I’m not laying on the floor and crying. Or at least not both at the same time. 

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Cheers.