Life after graduation
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By Hannah Ajao
Life, indeed, does change after school. It is not always easy. After leaving school, things and situations around begin to change drastically. There would be lots of new experiences and challenges. It is the stage where uncertainty prevails; where the course of study has no monetary prospect; the stage where there is a never-ending cycle of needing experience to get a job, and the stage where life goals will seem hard to achieve.
School life is considered as the golden period of one’s life. However, as soon as one finishes school, there comes a sense of responsibility over one’s life, and it can cause great anxiety for many youths. After many years in school, one could be overwhelmed by fresh responsibilities. Most times, youths are concerned with earning money. No matter what, life after school is usually different from what it used to be in school.
The future begins after school. This is when important decisions are made. It is evident that people end up on various paths from what they had anticipated, but it is still important to have an idea of the path to take. The freedom to choose among career, course, job, life partner, recognition, decent living, among others, pose challenges.
One of the biggest challenge is to decide on a career and build it. Whether to go for higher studies, seek a job, or to be an entrepreneur to make a good living. For higher studies, you need to decide a career path and pursue it, choose a good course, university and then attain the required qualifications. A search needs to be done and several factors to be considered before finalising. If the decision is to get a job, you would need to hunt for opportunities. To be an entrepreneur, you would need to be innovative, creative, industrious, and also versatile to survive the tide in the business world.
Life after school is not a complete freedom from rules, but basically stepping into a new set of them. It is a big black hole, unless you have a job lined up. Not everyone secures a good job immediately after school. Some even get a job not in their field because of the present condition of the country. The truth is that many students don’t have plans for life after school because they were either carried away by activities of their studies or did not just plan ahead.
Fresh graduates may feel stressed out until they land a good job.
Some will lose out because of lack of experience. But how could a new graduate not be given any opportunity to develop their professional skills? Graduates often have the mentality that they know everything there is to know about a job and this should be rightfully so after spending four to seven years in the university.
The task of finding a job can be daunting. Furthermore, our parents have drummed it into us that education is the ticket to a better life.
It is hard for fresh graduates who are yet to find employment.They may even avoid family gathering.
It might come as a huge shock that having a degree does not mean that you can just walk into your dream job. Instead, graduates are confronted with more experienced candidates competing for the same position. With so many students in tertiary institutions, the competition for jobs is fierce.
With cost of living such as rent, food, and fare rising, financial pressures can be a struggle to mee.
Many might feel they’re quite good at money management while at school, for they have been managing their budget and expenses on their own for quite sometime. But managing finances in school where a major source of incoming money comes from pocket money given by parents is different from managing finances after school because you would need to learn how to save and make judicious spending, pay your taxes and send money home to your parents.
Maintaining a balance between personal and professional life is yet another challenge faced by graduates.There are social adjustments. Sometimes, relocating to boost career prospects is required. Life can be handled smartly, if you plan things properly. However, you will need to face the real world, meet, deal, and build contacts with all kinds of people.
The ability to manage situations cannot be overemphasised. If you cannot control your time and expenses, life after school might be rocky for you.
Nowadays, life and career is not accelerated by what you know, but by who you know. This is why networking and cultivating productive relationships for business and employment have become an important practice for professionals. Here networking comes to mind. Networking is a huge investment in yourself, and your future in life after school.
Growing up is a part of life, so is life after school. However, you must accept the changes in life positively without succumbing to the pressures of the real world.
Life after school begins with a new and exciting stage of life with its unique challenges. From preparing to enter the job market to adjusting to full-time employment, navigating through the twists and turns of the working world will require a willingness to be adaptable.
The world is a beautiful place to live in and there is more to life beyond school. It gives you the freedom to make a choice. It is up to you to decide what you want to make of it. So, dream big and strive to achieve your goals once you step out of school.
- Ajao is a 200-Level Mass Communication student of University of Ilorin (UNILORIN).