Saturday, 2 February 2013

Countdown to Graduation Day

We got our dates for graduation today, and it looks like on the 12th of July, I'll be stumbling onto a stage and shaking someone's hand whilst wearing the world's silliest hat.

Where did the time go? It feels like just yesterday that I wandered into that forbidding grey building with the sign 'N Block' plastered to it like a warning (actually, maybe that was yesterday - I do still get lost on campus sometimes...). But now my days are numbered, and to be honest, I don't want to graduate just yet! Here's why:

I will look stupid in my graduation outfit. I'm not talking about the dress and the shoes - I get to pick them so unless I have terrible taste (fairly likely), those bits ought to be fine. No, I mean the great billowing cape. If I wanted to dress up as Severus Snape, I think I would do it in the privacy of my own home rather than in front of hundreds of people (not that I've thought about it that much. Although I suppose it's different if you're Alan Rickman).
And the mortar board. The dreaded graduation cap. It's alright for those of you with sleek, straight hair that will accept the restrictive contours of the hat like it's an extension of your head. But if, like me, your hair is a bit on the voluminous side and straight hair just doesn't suit you... well, I'm picturing a mad-professor-type scenario. 

Only Michelle Obama could pull that look off.

No more student loans. That lovely free money that comes into my bank account every term like a tsunami of good fortune. I know it's not really free, but I always find it hard to believe that I'll ever be earning enough to pay it back. When the first payment came through, I felt a bit bad about spending it, but the feeling certainly didn't last long (as I'm sure my order history on ASOS will attest to). 

And that's another thing - student discounts! It's the way I justify most of my clothes shopping and I don't think I can let it go. Maybe I won't. Maybe I'll change my name to 'Student' so that it will be on all my official ID. That sounds like a plan.

Leaving York. This is a very sad thing. I came to this university because of the city and I don't want to leave so soon. It has such a rich history and I feel like I'm treading on the same land that has been so significant to so many over the centuries. So much stuff happened here! Romans and Vikings and all of those guys - they all loved it and so do I. 

I like that it's a touristy place too, because it means lots of people ask me for directions to places and I seem like a cool young local Yorkshire-type (I usually give them the wrong directions, but I never realise until afterwards. York is confusing).

Pressure to get a job. This is the biggie. Like, a proper job! I feel like there are lots of things I want to do, but the jobs just don't seem to fit the limited experience of a newly-sprouted graduate. And I don't want to get stuck in a job that I don't want to do. It's just an anxious time that I just haven't been properly prepared for. I feel like if I wear a trouser suit, I'll look like a little girl playing with dressing up clothes. 
That's more my style.

It's closing a chapter on my life. Sorry to be cheesy and sentimental, but it's true. Once I graduate, it's over, I'm no longer a student. Weirder than that, 'History of Art' will always be my degree, and to some extent it will define me. I really never thought this time would come and I literally can't imagine what life will be like. I know that it won't be as scary as I'm making out, but the fact is there all the same: I will have finished uni for good, and that's that. The student bubble will pop and go all over my face and in my hair and then my mum will have to cut it out with scissors. 

But I'm trying to be optimistic about the situation.

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