Why Does Graduation Seem So Scary?

Picture it. It’s May/June and you’ve just walked out of your last exam, dissertation handed in and presentations completed. The past few years of your life come to an end and you have to go out and get on with the rest of your life. Are you absolutely terrified? I am.

The idea of no more exams and deadlines is a beautiful one. I’ve managed to enjoy a little bit of it during this placement year, and I know I want more of it. However, this entire year has had that “temporary” air about it. With most of the choices I made throughout the year, I was always aware that come September 2019 I would be back to the previous norm, whether I liked it or not. Heading into the next stage of life is what dominates my mind most of the time, having visited Rightmove so often that Google definitely keeps targeting home supply ads at me now.

To be honest, the most terrifying thing about graduation for me is that I have no idea where I will be by then. I am only 80% on doing my integrated masters, which isn’t even concrete till next June. I keep toying with the idea of just springing out into the world, but I know how much further I can get with the masters, and know I would be so reluctant to go back for a post-graduate. It sounds like I just shouldn’t do one, as it is very clear to everyone and myself that I hate the idea of doing another year of university. I have my reasons for doing it, and know that present me never really seems to do what is best for future me, so this is a decision solely for future me and not the present education-fatigued version.

On top of that bit of uncertainty, the wide variety of locations for engineering graduate schemes is another thing. Sure there are lots of graduate roles in London, but most technical mechanical engineering roles seem to be either in Bristol, Oxford, Wales… the Midlands, the north-west, areas of Scotland, oh and don’t forget Stevenage and Surrey. That isn’t even all the locations that are densely populated with large or small engineering companies with schemes I’ve seen that look amazing. Where on earth am I going to be living come 2021?

I know I have another two years to panic about all this, but I thought I’d crack on with the worry train. This blog has been a good way to air out the thoughts I typically don’t say out loud and I’ve seen that I like to freak out a lot. Like a lot. Hopefully everything will start falling into place and by the time I don my gown, I’ll be able to read this and smile.


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