Alternative Post-Graduation Options

Ever since our initial campus tour, we have been told that the plan after graduation is to secure a real world job.  If that idea is daunting to you, have no fear.

Although some of us near graduation have a job already lined up, some of us will go home to live with mom and dad for a few months before getting hired and some of us may graduate with a more unique plan.

1. Graduate School

Continuing education is a smart move for many reasons.  For some, it is an opportunity to continue to be academically challenged.   For others, it is a great way to receive personal satisfaction by receiving a master’s or doctoral degree. For most, it is the key that opens many more doors for employment with a higher financial reward to come.

2. Travel

Whether you camp out in your car for a while or bounce from hostel to hostel, traveling can be a great way to continue to learn and grow.

It is the perfect time. You will be fresh out of college, probably unmarried, have no mortgage, and still have some time to pay off student loans.  You might as well go and make a few memories, meet new people and learn from them, and use this time spent abroad to build up your resume.

If you walk on the wild side and live completely on your own for a while, transitioning into a 9-5 job will be a cakewalk.

3. Peace Corps

Volunteering to tackle the most pressing needs of people around the world may be a great way to satisfy that empty spot you have been yearning to fill.

Rather than jumping into a full-time job that will pay for a comfortable lifestyle, you could spend some time feeding hungry children and escaping the guilt of having so much while others have to little. It might just revamp how you spend the rest of your life.

4. City Year

What better way to use your education than to spend a year using that knowledge to keep struggling students in school? Run by AmeriCorps, the program will commit you to working in one of 25 chosen high poverty communities and school districts across the country. You can choose to stay close and work in Milwaukee, or travel a bit and explore cities such as Denver, Philadelphia, or Sacramento.

5. WWOOF

Maybe you spent the past few years working your tail end off in a major that you will probably never find a job in. Or maybe you are just realizing that you spent the past few years earning a degree in something you would rather not pursue a life-long career in.

The World Wide Opportunity on Organic Farms offers alternative ways of living by being placed on an organic farm in another country or here in the United States.   There, you typically work four to six hours in return for a full day’s food and accommodation.  While you are there, you can spend some time figuring out your life while learning about sustainability and agriculture in the meantime.

But what’s the rush to grow up? Treasure these carefree years and enjoy what may be the best years of your life.

Emma St.Aubin

estau255@uwsp.edu

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