Friday, October 4, 2013

On Trying to Find a Direction Post-Grad

Via Tumblr

I've discussed a few times before that I graduated university this past April. Graduating university was extremely important to me, and in the end, I ended up completing two 4-year degrees (two honours B.A.s) in 3 school years. Basically, I worked extremely hard, took full course loads through two summers, and even did course overload a few semesters. I even managed to work a 2-term internship into that equation.

Not to sound full of myself here, but I'm exceptionally proud of myself for doing what I did. When I started university, Holly and Brooke were 1 and 2, and when I graduated they had just turned 4 and 5. When I look back and realize how young they were when I started, how much we went through in the 3 years I was in school, and how I ended up graduating a year early with phenomenal grades and holding down an internship, I start to think I can do anything I set my mind to.

Basically, all that leads to now- 5 months after my last day of university classes, I'm working a retail job and considering my options. I'm trying to find a direction, and I'm having a really hard time finding one.

I apply to several jobs per week, but finding work with my degree (communications) in the area we live is proving near impossible without 10+ years of experience. The majority of work in the field respective to my degree is 4 hours away in Toronto, and for obvious reasons (Brooke living here with her mother) we can't move 4 hours away right now. I can't lie, I, like most other recent graduates, had completely unrealistic post-grad expectations and now the real world is kicking me right in the face. I found my job in retail right after I started looking for something, but now I'm at a standstill because clearly it's not what I'd hoped for.

I'm someone who can't stop thinking about the future. I worry, I wonder, and I plan. I can't sit still. After job hunting and working a completely irrelevant job for the last 5 months, I've deciding to go back to school.

I was warned when I began university that I might need further schooling to give me some "real skills" post-grad, and now I truly understand what that means. University taught me a whole lot of theory and some great writing and research skills and maybe helped me review some high school math, but didn't add a whole lot to my resume. Employers want to see concrete things that I know, and I'm now realizing that only more schooling will provide that to me.

 I did my research this time- checking locally to see salary ranges, availability, etc. and have my mind set on going back to school for human resource management. To be in the field, I will have to be educated about things such as accounting and claims- concrete skills.

I'm still really confused and sometimes question my decision. Why? Because this might be my last chance to get it right. I can't just keep going to school if things don't work out. I also still have to decide which type of schooling to go for (a masters degree or a post graduate diploma- both have their benefits). Basically, my plan is to be back in school by next September because I feel like I'm slowing my own life down. I want to buy a house, get married, possibly expand our family, and although I know school is an investment, it just slows things down for another year.

I'm sure I'll figure this all out, it just feels really good to write about my post-grad frustration/confusion.


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