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How can I cope with the sadness of leaving college?

I'm approaching my last semester as an undergraduate, and I'm already sad about leaving a really phenomenal friend group, campus, and community behind. Many people I talk to say that college is the best time of your life, and I'm worried that I'll have more to look back on than to look forward to.

Can I hear some stories from professionals who came out of undergrad and found a lot of joy wherever they ended up?

#undergrad #career-transition #graduation #community #campus

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Subject: Career question for you

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Ben’s Answer

Hi Abby;

First know that most people felt that way! Apart from college being amazing any kind of change is hard! My advice would be to make a plan that focusses on your happiness just as much as your career choices and living arrangements.

I've emigrated twice and both times used a simple tool to see what will change any ho I can balance my new life. One (free tool) I've used is "The wheel of Life" but use anything you want. The point is to think about the things at College that make you happy e.g. Friends; Social; Sports; Charity etc.. Score them to see which ones have the greatest impact on your happiness. Then think about next year - which ones are the most important to you to protect? Will you get some new ones like moving closer to family; old friends or new work colleagues? If you see gaps - make a plan! Look at local gyms; social groups; volunteering orgs; sports teams etc. There's always something fun to try!

In summary a plan could reduce nerves but also it's great to just acknowledge that things will change but deciding to do something about it to take control!

Good luck and remember everyone went through this stage; nerves are totally valid and you are not alone!
Thank you comment icon I appreciate this, thank you for the advice. Abby L.
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Kathryn’s Answer

Hi Abby such a great question! I too had such a wonderful college experience and made several lifelong friends that I have maintained for forty years! I moved far away from my home state for graduate school, work and then settling into my adult life. I have made incredible friends from each stage of life and have kept in touch through holiday cards and letters, Facebook and occasional visits. I've also attended reunions from time to time and seen a broader circle of former friends and acquaintances that way. Make a point to keep up with your close friends; it is well worth the effort! But each stage of your life will bring new experiences and people who share your interests. I'm glad college was such a great time for you; if you approach your adult life with that much gusto and enthusiasm you'll likely find the same rewarding friendships await you in the future!
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Alejandra’s Answer

Hi Abby,

This is a great question and you should know EVERYONE feels this way. I've been out of college now for 4 years and I will say the first year was very very hard. It's a huge adjustment even if you don't move cities, or get a new friend group.

I want to promise you, there is SO MUCH joy to have outside of college. Yes, college is the last time you don't have bills, you can sleep in all you want, you can hang out with friends all the time, etc... but there are also a lot of restrictions! What is amazing about post-college is you get the chance to fully actualize as a person. What you do everyday, who you hang out with, the hobbies you pick up have nothing to do with something you HAVE to do (like go class, or run into people because you live on campus).

Some of my favorite things that have happened for me post-college is I found my dream job, I learned SOO much about myself and now the friends I have are so much of a richer bong and genuine kindness for one another. Oh, the best part.. I wanted a cat so I got one, his name is Giovanni!

Bottom line- graduating is going to be super-duper hard, it's hard for everyone! But life after college can be amazing if you go into it excited, ready to learn about yourself, and willing to explore everything else life has to offer (:

Good luck!
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Sanjana’s Answer

While I am not a professional yet, I can understand why you are feeling that way. Up until high school, many individuals viewed college as the time to explore, learn, and meet lifelong friends - it supposedly being the "best time of our lives."

Well, what happens after this supposedly "best time" is over? Is there nothing else to look forward to? WRONG

I am sure you will miss the memories made in college and the people you have met. However, there are so many other chapters in life to look forward to. While the transition to the corporate world may seem scary, it is all a path of learning and exploring!
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Jeremy’s Answer

Omg, you don’t have to say goodbye to your friends and associates, you make new ones!

I loved being in school too, but being out meeting new people who have experience in your field is at first scary, but very invigorating and exciting. Just remember all those you meet were new too at one time!
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