I have counted down the minutes until the end of a class. I have counted down the days until a weekend. I have especially counted down the weeks and months until the end of a semester. This semester has seemed no different, as I routinely crossed out each day on my wall calendar with my yellow highlighter. However, it is different. December will not just be the end of the fall 2010 semester, but the end of my time here at the University of Nevada, Reno.
I am graduating in the December Commencement ceremony. To say it hasn’t sunk in yet would be an understatement. I bought my graduation gear – the cap, the gown and the invitations – and even when I was handing my debit card to the cashier, I still didn’t fully understand what I was purchasing, or perhaps more importantly, what that purchase meant.
2010 DECEMBER COMMENCEMENT
The University of Nevada, Reno’s Winter Commencement will take place Saturday, Dec. 4 at Lawlor Events Center, on campus.
Students and faculty leaders will assemble for Commencement at 8 a.m. and the formal processional begins at 8:30 a.m. University President Milton Glick will welcome attendees.
Public parking is available in the West Stadium Parking Complex, directly north of Lawlor.
It is funny, with all the counting down I have done my entire education, I am now wondering where all the time went, and secretly hoping time would slow down.
I guess I do know where the time went when I stop to think about it. It was spent reading literary articles, writing 16-page papers, spending entire weekends working with groups to get projects done, doing projects for my various internships, and volunteering at museums and charity walks. I have put in my time and I am proud to say that it was time well spent, as corny as that may sound.
However, there are those few things that I won’t miss, like the group projects when a few of us did all the work, and the others got off getting a good grade while contributing nothing. There were also those literary articles that I didn’t understand, and still had to try to write papers on. And, of course, there was the daily challenge of parking on campus.
However, there are many things that I will miss.
I will miss the campus – the leaves that crunch under my feet during fall, the snow that blankets the roofs and trees in the winter, and the buildings that make me believe this is where education really happens.
I will miss the fantastic computers in the Journalism School, as my home computer is extremely outdated.
I will miss the small successes of practicing a presentation, writing a paper, and studying for a test and receiving a good grade for all the hard work that I have done.
I will miss the teachers, such as Deidre Pike, Scott Slovic, Gary Haynes and many others, that made classes worth all the hard work. Finally, I will miss my dedicated peers who came to class to learn and challenged me by giving more to think about.
I will graduate with a degree in journalism and a minor in cultural anthropology. After this semester, I will hopefully find my life a little less hectic, a little less of a balancing act between school and work.
I am pretty lucky, though. I have already found a job, and it is a position that pertains to my education earned through the Reynolds School of Journalism. I had been frantically applying everywhere, even contemplating what would happen if, for some reason, I did not have a job upon graduation, which was a pretty terrifying thought.
To all graduates who have not yet found a job, I will tell you more than just, “Hang in there.” I will tell you what I heard during my last semester here from Nevada journalism alum Scott Brenner, a lobbyist with more than 15 years of experience working on Capitol Hill and in the Executive Branch on homeland security, aviation, surface and other transportation issues.
“Relationships are important. Call, email, even snail mail past employers, places where you had internship experience, even teachers, and ask for suggestions and get your name out there. You never know who they know who is hiring, or even if they are hiring.”
Saturday, Dec. 4 is fast approaching, but even then, the semester is not really over, as classes and finals actually wrap up a couple of weeks after that (something I will add to my “will not miss” list). In between studying for those last finals, I will spend my last weeks here on campus how I want to spend them. There is no single right way to handle college, or life for that matter, so we should all spend our last few precious weeks here at Nevada how we want to.