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April 23, 2010 / Brent Sears

Senior Panic

What options do you have when you switch directions during your last semester of college?  I knew Spanish education was the wrong direction for me.  Looking back on it, I had only majored in Spanish because I wanted to travel and learn the language.  After doing that I knew I didn’t want to spend the rest of my adult life in a classroom.  Come to think of it, I didn’t really like being in classrooms at all.  That feeling goes back as far as kindergarten.

So I was 24 years old and about to finish college.  Graduate school was not an option because I didn’t have a clue what I would go for.  My Spanish was good but not amazing.  I looked at the Peace Corps, but I decided that wasn’t the right fit either.

When in doubt, panic!

What was I going to do?  This feeling is what I now call Senior Panic.

I see a case of Senior Panic about once a month.  Students come to the office to talk about study abroad because they have to go before graduation.  They are in the same place I was and it is obvious.  For these students graduation represents a huge shift from almost seventeen years of education to going out to find a j-o-b.  There is far more anxiety than excitement.  When we go over their limited travel +  academic credit options as seniors, the look I usually see is not disappointment, but fear because the real world is just around the corner.

When in doubt, Senior Panic.


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