Editorial: Open-Ended Opportunities

With graduation quickly approaching for some of us, the term “quarter-life crisis” has become popular among my peers.

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For many people my age, there was always a general plan: finish high school, go to college, earn good grades.

After I graduate, there will be nothing left in my plan.  Even if I decide to pursue graduate school, I will not be able to start before fall.  For the first time in my life, I will not be a student—and that is scary.

It has caused a panic that races through my mind every time someone asks, “What are your plans for after graduation?”  Options of what I will do with my life once I graduate have ranged from highly practical to absolutely crazy and everything in between.

The transition from college life to adult life is a scary proposition, one that comes with many stigma, stressors and opinions.  There is no right or wrong option, but there are many paths.

Some might choose to take time to travel, others might want, or need, to jump into a full-time job.  One opportunity I have discovered is WWOOF, or World Wide Opportunities on Organic Farms, where one can volunteer on an organic farm in almost any area of the world while receiving room and board as payment.

Everyone seems to have ideas as to what I should do with my life—except for me.  My mother thinks I should move home, my father thinks I should work for the government, professors think I should go to graduate school, friends think I should drop everything and travel the world.

Luckily, as soon-to-be-graduates, the world truly is open to us.  We are now in charge, and we now make the choices for how to fill our time.

Where we are now is exactly where we are supposed to be.  We can be confused and afraid, but we can also take risks, make our own choices, learn from our experiences and create our own narratives.  Our quarter-life crisis can become our quarter-life opportunity.

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