I’m not exactly sure how to write the final post in my E merging #SApro journey. Perhaps it’s because I’ve already had so many “final” moments in the last few months, that for once this final entry doesn’t seem to phase me.
Over the last few months, I turned in my final paper, I completed my final class, and I had my final meeting with an advisor. I was a student worker for the final time, while working my final 20-hour week dressed for the final time in jeans and a hoodie.
I had already secured my graduate assistantship when I earned my undergraduate degree. I was continuing as a student so I knew there would be more of the moments I was currently experiencing ahead of me, and the finality of it all wasn’t really there. Classes would start up in the fall and I would again work in a campus office. So to me, getting my bachelor’s degree didn’t feel like an end but rather a new chapter in the same book.
This time though, as the school year ended, I knew that it would be some time before I picked up a syllabus, worked on a discussion post, or completed an assigned literature review.
Although it’s only been two years, it’s strange, thinking back to the person I thought I was when I graduated with my undergraduate degree. I thought I knew what I wanted to do, how I wanted to do it, and who I wanted to be while I did it. I can tell you truthfully that of the hundred things that I thought I was going to do, only one happened: I got a dog.
Now, while I may not have ended up exactly where I was planning to go, I know that I’ve ended up exactly where I need to be. I don’t know how to explain it much more than a feeling—a feeling that I am right where I need to be at this moment, in this place. The world around me has adjusted itself as my life plan adjusted to the life I ended up living.
Looking ahead, my new struggle will become avoiding complacency. Yes, academically I may have reached a finish line, but that doesn’t mean I can’t continue to push and expand my knowledge base about things that interest me. Who knows, perhaps additional education will be a race I take on in the future. Professionally, I may be in my first “adult job” but that also doesn’t mean it’s an end. I can continue to become better equipped and more knowledgeable about how to be amazing at my job each and every day.
Though I am where I need to be now, I am realizing that doesn’t necessarily mean that this is where my journey will end as either a human, or a student affairs professional. I can continue to look for new opportunities to challenge myself in the future. There will be many finish lines in my life, but being me is a journey I will continue, regardless of where my other journeys take me.
This post is part of the Emerging SA Pro series following 4 awesome people: Alexandria, Doug, Emily, and Alexander, as they blog monthly about 1 year of their journey as either a new SA Pro or SA grad student. We are proud to help them share their stories as they break into our field.