With graduation season in full bloom, there are many mixed feelings about the ceremony. It’s exciting but at the same time, it’s pretty tempting to not actually go and just forget it was ever an option.July 15th, 2022 | Abby Brooks
I’m really happy to graduate and celebrate my studies, and I’m super proud of myself for making it through the years of studying as uni can be really hard sometimes. I personally don’t even think it was academically that difficult, it was more the mental health aspect and having to work part time a lot outside of uni which was quite draining.
I can’t help but be reminded of the negative parts of the uni experience, but maybe that’s just my typically pessimistic attitude (I'm a Scorpio). I’m asking myself the question - why did I get myself into £50,000 of debt just to end up having to pay another £50 to borrow an ugly gown and cap (as well as potentially buying a new outfit, although this isn’t exactly necessary)? Why is the cap and gown so ugly - will it not ruin my outfit? Can the university maybe not use some of the money they saved in the pandemic (where we had access to 0 resources) to cover this cost?
Uni has drained my bank account and taken me into the minus numbers, so another chunk being taken out to wear a gown for less than 4 hours isn’t exactly ideal, as I’m giving even more money back to the institution that had the nerve to charge £9250 a year.
I’m lucky enough to have a full time job straight out of uni which is amazing, but I can imagine how stressed some other grads are, and this ceremony could be a reminder of the overwhelming sense of change and pressure to be ‘put together’. And honestly, other than my job, I don’t feel like a real adult at all. There’s a term called ‘transition anxiety’, which is a pretty fitting feeling for grads.
I can imagine I’m going to be hearing a lot of ‘I don’t know what I’m going to do now’ or ‘yeah I think I’m gonna do a panic masters’ or ‘OMG I’m so far into my overdraft now that I need to move back in with my parents’. A quarter life crisis is certainly on the cards for some people graduating...I mean, it is a big new life transition. This is a bit of a bittersweet moment.
I am also lucky enough to have studied a degree which I ended up enjoying, but many people on graduation day will be reminded of the degree they chose in sixth form in a panic which they sort of regretted taking. The career you may have thought you wanted 3 years ago isn't always the one you end up doing. Why was there so much pressure in college or sixth form, at the age of 18/19, to choose your career path? And why weren't we told about realistic job roles? Even whilst at uni, on my Fashion Promotion degree we were encouraged to look into these massively creative photography roles, art direction and marketing for high fashion brands, which got us all very excited to enter the fashion world.
There are barely any of these roles in comparison to the number of people studying towards being hired for these roles. And the people who end up getting hired for these roles 'know someone' or had money from their parents to rely on so they could do numerous unpaid internships to get them a step ahead. Especially after the pandemic a lot of people around me began to resent the degree they were taking, but completed it as this was easier than going through the process of dropping out and immediately paying loans back. Oh well, first world problems innit.
On the plus side, I think it’s going to be be a sunny day so we will all be getting some iconic pictures in our outfits (thanks global warming!). I’m so excited to see what outfits everyone’s gonna pull out of the bag - and I know they’re gonna be cute because I’m (obviously) graduating alongside other fellow fashion students. This wasn’t aimed to discourage anyone from going to their graduation, because at the end of the day - I’m still going to mine. You’ll probably regret it if you don’t go, as I’m sure you will have fond memories there. Seeing your family and friends happy and proud of you will definitely make it worth it - so enjoy it whilst you can!
Lots of love from Koi xx