I’m a Graduate. It’s so crazy the whole thing (even two weeks later) still feels very surreal, I guess it’s like with anything – you don’t just wake up the next morning and feel like you’re a completely different person – it just kind of hits you one day when you look back on how far you have come. If you had told me during my first semester of university (which I won’t deny was incredibly hard) that I would be graduating with First Class Honours in Mathematics, I would’ve laughed you all the way to Mars but now I can definitely say that hard work has paid off, even if my student loan hasn’t…
The day was amazing! You get to uni, go and pick up your gown before spending 10 minutes adjusting and pinning it to look proper (this might have been me just being a perfectionist on the hunt for symmetry). After, parents of course want to take a million photos to show family and friends and luckily the sun was out so my beautifully made up face and TV advert worthy hair could not be ruined. Then after a departmental reception Maths held -where Euler house i.e. my house won the cup, we all headed down to De Montfort Hall for the ceremony just next to the campus. If you’ve ever been on a bus tour to the accommodation in Oadby this hall would have definitely been pointed out as the ‘place you hope to graduate’.
There I stood with coursemates and friends, capturing those important graduation photo moments such as throwing your cap in the air. And of course this year was full of ceremonies where graduands proceeded to take a ‘selfie’ on stage with the Chancellor. (See both pics below for my single versions of these examples.) For someone who isn’t afraid of attention, even I was nervous walking from my seat to the stairs but as soon as you’re on the stage, you realise you’re just doing what you’ve been doing since you were 10 months old (walking) with a momentary handshake and then it’s all over.
You’re a Graduate with a capital ‘G’.
As this is my last post, I thought I’d propose my own little equation for the title you receive before and after the ceremony, along with the correct positioning of the tassel on your cap.
Graduand (tassel on the left) + degree ceremony = Graduate (tassel on the right)
After all the fun and emotion, comes the even more emotional goodbyes to many people you most likely won’t see again along with those you know you’re definitely going to see within the following week. The day is a wonderful way to end an amazing three years of what we all know is often called and most fittingly too in my opinion, the ‘best of our lives’… for now anyway.
As with everything in life, you wait for something and then they all come at once. The last few weeks have been awash with goodbyes to the University of Leicester, the campus and in particular the David Wilson Library (this has been my second home every January and May), my job as a Student Ambassador which I have loved doing since early First Year having the opportunity to interact with potential applicants face-to-face and of course, my time as a Student Blogger. I’m so excited to see what the future brings and to enter the grown-up world as my training to be a teacher begins!
I hope you’ve enjoyed joining me on my final year as a Maths with Astronomy student and hopefully I have provided lots of insight into what being a student entails along with how to get here and how to go from here. If you have any final questions about anything regarding university then as usual, feel free to leave a comment below! Also, go back and read the wealth of past posts covering everything from how to organise your packing to how to celebrate your birthday university style.
One final university tip before I ‘publish’ and say bye to the Student Blogs forever; people will always tell you that time flies when you’re at university – you only need to go back to my posts this year to witness the speedy nature of it – and since starting university, I’ve realised this in all its grandeur so I guess if I could tell you anything about university it comes down to two things that I have learnt and will carry forward with me throughout the rest of my life:
1. Don’t worry – if you can control it, change it and if you can’t, accept it.
2. Make the most of moments and opportunities – you probably won’t remember that one night you stayed up perfecting your homework but you will remember the night you learnt something new about your friends.
And on that emotional and cheesier-than-Red-Leicester-note…
x x x