I have always loved school in a nerdy, overachiever, going-to-destroy-you-all-with-my-grade-point-average kind of way. Since I was a child, back-to-school supply shopping has literally been second best to Christmas for me and, I would eagerly wait each August for the Target back-to-school section to pop up like a traveling circus of glue sticks, mechanical pencils, and white boards.
That’s why I am a little disoriented by being so excited NOT to go back to school this semester (or ever again if I choose it).
When I graduated college in May, I pretty much crawled across the graduation stage. In my usual overachiever way, I had completed my English degree requirements when I finished my junior year so, my last year of college was more of a formality than anything else.
Deciding to use the time to the fullest, I studied abroad in England in the fall of 2013, which turned out to be a tough yet worthwhile, fantastic, and life-changing experience.
However, when I came back to finish my last semester at my home university, I ended up feeling kind of bitter about it.
It seemed like I was being forced to waste time, energy, and money by fulfilling an arbitrary minimum 120 credit graduation requirement even though I had already fulfilled my general requirements and my degree requirements. At the same time, my university seemed to be trying to make my last semester my worst, with various offices on campus making my life a living hell.
I spent so much time and energy battling with so many different departments on campus during my last semester that by the time that I finally said my goodbyes in May, I was half tempted to flip the bird as I drove down the road.
After such a tumultuous last semester, it’s not such a surprise that I feel sour towards the education system that used to be my bread and butter.
I wrote a few weeks back that post-grad life is better, and I am still standing by that statement. Knowing that I am not returning to college next week is a big sigh of relief for me. I have always thrived on permanency and routine, and college is the exact opposite of that – it is always changing, pushing, and disappearing.
College never felt like a good fit for me, something that didn’t quite click until I realized how much happier I am outside of university system, and that’s not to worry the freshman and upperclassman who will be returning to school come fall but rather to serve as a reminder that whether college is your salvation or your own personal hell, there is always a light at the end of the tunnel waiting for you to find it.