Now, the May graduates are finishing up the last classes of their undergrad years. They’ve bought their tassels, turned in their name (as you pronounce it, not write it). They’re looking for jobs, ready to head out into the real world (or not). What about those of us who are left? Who’ve got just a little bit left to go? I think we should take advantage of that last semester.
Fit in one last internship, either this summer or in the fall. Find something you love, maybe it will lead you into your first post-grad job. You’ll be there soon enough. Round out your undergrad education with something that helps you figure out what you want to do.
If you’ve done your internships, or just don’t have time for the commitment (there’s a reason we’re still here, right?), then find somewhere to volunteer. It can be something related to what you want to do, or you can do something completely different. Go ahead and pet animals at Animal Allies. Plant a garden with community projects. Volunteer at a day camp. You’re not just your career, do something just for you. That doesn’t mean you can’t put it on your resume though. You totally can.
Independent Study/Honors Project
Not every major has some big capstone project. If you haven’t done something that really shows what you can put into your work, do it. Find out what it takes to do an independent study or an honors project. Independent study you usually find an advisor, pick a topic and develop some research on it. It may be combing the archives or making surveys to find answers. Honors projects can be along the same line, but take a little more time to develop and often involve more hands on work.
If you don’t have a full schedule, take something fun. Be the (super) senior in a first-year class. It’s a good time to reflect on everything that’s happened the past four years. Take something that you’ve been interested in, but didn’t fit any requirements. Take a dance class, or an art class. It doesn’t even have to be at your university. You can find all sorts of fun things to do in the community (bonus: it’ll still be there when you graduate).
A lot of us have been doing school for 16 years straight. That’s ridiculous, when you think about it. So give yourself a break. I mentioned dance class, right? Find something that lets you breathe, if you haven’t already. Pick up a book! One that isn’t connected to school. Once you’re out “in the real world” you have to be a person again, not just a student. Take this time to get reacquainted with yourself. I think this goes for the May grads, too.
Bottom line, we’re almost through! Make the last few months of your undergrad years count; however you want that to be.