I’m Graduating Tomorrow! This is where I’m at.
My first instinct is to be anxious.
The first twenty-two years of my life have been a series of increasingly difficult tests, and my final year exams were the ultimate step. Surely it would be wrong not to worry about my results!
The truth is, I did not come to university for a degree certificate. Throughout my first three years of study, my primary motivation during exams was that I wanted to be able to continue studying the next year. I genuinely love learning: exams were just a necessary part of that learning process.
Back in my Whitefields bedroom in 2016, I stuck a written reminder on the yellow paint of the walls. It read, “Learning for the Love of Knowledge”.
This is the impulse that has spurred me through the last four years, and its very nature (being based on the learning itself as opposed to using study as a stepping stone to a career) is what makes it so enduring.
That’s why I’m going to be repeating those words to myself as I wait for tomorrow, to remind myself of the real reason I took my degree and the relatively low level of importance this allows my final results to hold.
The Big Reveal.
I’ve already had some online celebrations: my church, the Warwick Latin and Ballroom and Warwick Bears Ultimate Frisbee all held online awards, which were really special evenings. My favourite part was how they honoured the efforts we put in outside of our studies, be it in putting in the work in training or supporting our peers. I love choosing outfits, so I also appreciated the chance to dress up for the night!
My celebrations tomorrow are going to be much more low-key. I’m planning to open up my results on Tabula by myself, and then I’ll tell my family and we’ll have ice creams from the freezer. It’s not a typical graduation, but then, nothing’s typical in 2020, and I do like a Solero.
My next phase of life involves a different kind of waiting as I search for roles to apply for and construct job applications.
I’m making the most of the available resources, including the one-to-one careers appointments available to all Warwick graduates; and GRADUWAITING, a Facebook group created by Warwick Alumni Issy Deane and Daniela Mizzen to support students and graduates seeking employment.
In the meantime, I’m taking small steps to improve my careers prospects. I’m learning to drive, working on coding projects and exploring where my strengths lie.
I’m also taking time out for myself. I’ve spent a long time focusing on maths and nothing else, so it’s going to take time to ‘zoom out’ and refocus my life.
I imagine some of you might be experiencing a similar time of waiting, celebration and relief as you’ve come to the end of your sixth form studies. What will your results day look like? What are you doing to relax before university?
After September I might not be around on this blog anymore as I say goodbye to Warwick, but I’m hoping to set up a personal blog so you guys can see where my maths degree takes me. Let me know if this is something you’d be interested in or if you have any ideas for the direction I could take it in!