The time is approaching. The hot Sunday in May will be upon us in the blink of an eye. We will march across the grass to our seats as the sun beats down upon us. It is coming faster than we realize, and soon enough, it will be our time to walk across the stage at the Maryville College Commencement.
As May approaches rapidly, Seniors all over the Maryville College campus are faced with the common question: What’s next? Deciding what to do with the rest of our lives is stressful, and Seniors all over MC are confused about what to do next. There is the option of graduate school for some, entering directly into the work field for some or even further internships for others.
Senior year is filled with unforgettable memories. These are the memories that students will carry with them and remember for the rest of their lives. Accomplishments in academics are made across campus for all students due to the fact that every Senior has to take Comprehensive Exams and complete a thesis. Many people describe Senior year as filled with stress, yet there is so much to look forward to.
Senior Erika Hipsky said, “Junior year was full of ideals, and Senior year is full of reality.” Hipsky is an English major with Teacher Licensure and is preparing to begin student teaching this spring. As reality sneaks up on the Seniors, we realize that life is so much more than just classes. Life is unpredictable and full of new doors and adventures to ensue.
“Spring means full-time student teaching while balancing Praxis licensing exams with the College’s comprehensive exams, as well as seeking teaching jobs for the fall! So, I am both excited and anxious to begin it,” said Hipsky. Many licensure students feel the same way that Hipsky does: excited and anxious. There are so many uncertainties that are about to unfold. It is hard to pinpoint exactly what to expect, and students across campus are concerned for their futures.
Even though Senior year means uncertainty for many students, there are many accomplishments that have been made. Hipsky explained that her biggest accomplishment of Senior year so far is her undergraduate thesis. “I never imagined I would be able to complete such an extensive project” she said. Hipsky explained how supportive her professors were throughout the thesis process and how much she has grown academically.
Math major John Compton explained his biggest accomplishment. As he is still working on his thesis, he cited his life choices as his biggest accomplishment. Compton said, “Making the decision to go to grad. school helped me immensely.” Many students battle with themselves while deciding what will happen after graduation. For Compton, his choice to move onto graduate school has helped him in his final months at MC.
Both Hipsky and Compton are excited for future prospects. “Graduation is exciting” Compton said. The foundation has been set for students at Maryville College, and the only direction to go from the campus, is up. Hipsky said, “I have no doubt that the College’s emphasis on a well-rounded education has prepared me.”
All over campus there is excitement in the air. There is so much that is to come, and all we can do as Seniors is embrace it.
As the 100 Days celebration approaches for Seniors, we all reflect on the past four years and what it has meant to us. Hipsky explained her past four years and what she wishes she could have told herself as an entering Freshman.
She said, “I’m pretty satisfied with my experience, but if I could do it over again, I may have slowed down and enjoyed everything more.” College goes by too fast; that is often the complaint that many people have about school. So much of a college student’s time is devoted to school and furthering individual goals and dreams.
Compton explained what he would have told himself as a Freshman. “Never be too stressed. Focus on the now but reflect on the past,” he said. Though college is stressful, there is always time to live for the moment and do what makes you happy. Compton’s reflection is valuable for students everywhere—take a deep breath and enjoy the moment.
Maryville College offers so much to students, but one of the most important of these is offering the chance to discover oneself. Hipsky said, “MC is where I really found my sense of self, and it will always be my second home.” The community and sense of belonging is what many students recount as their favorite memory of the college for years to come.
So Seniors, take a deep breath, take it all in and don’t blink. We made it. We will finish strong. The rest of our lives are ahead of us.