As I’m sure many of you college seniors already know, you only have about a month left of the crazy parties and trying to make as many memories as possible in the short time you have left. You have spent the last four years surrounded by incredible people who you have learned so much from. You have had good times and bad times and learned so many lessons. So how exactly do you wrap up your experience at school? How do you move on from this experience and stay positive along the way? Well, Here are 18 things to do before you graduate college this spring; may you look at these list, consider some of the items and have an amazing last month. Always remember, this is not the end. This is not even close to the end. This is the start of a new beginning and another chapter.
1. Write an open letter to your crush (hey, you never know!)
You’ve liked this guy for four years (or thought he was cute for at least two of them…), you’ve had every chance in the world to tell this guy how you feel yet, you have always been too scared. You were too scared you’d run in to him all the time and it’d be awkward if he didn’t feel the same way. At the same time, you knew it would be amazing if he did! Why not let him know? You probably aren’t going to run into him again unless you want to! It’s not like you’ll have psych with him every day, so get it off your chest now. It’s the perfect time to tell him how you feel and laugh if he felt the same way.
In college we all have that prof. That teacher who just opens up the world to us and suddenly everything is so much clearer. They are constantly supporting us and sitting back as we succeed. They push us out of our comfort zone and are always there to write our recommendation letters. Now is the perfect time to let them know they mean the world to you. They are more than just a teacher who taught you biology. They taught you so much about life and about yourself. Thank them and let them know how vital they were to your success in these last four years.
3. Take a underclassman under your wing
Hey, somebody has to tell them that wearing miniskirts in January is not cool! Take a freshman under your wing and let them know that it does get better. The parties get cooler and the work makes more sense. Though graduating and leaving is hard, knowing you left some invaluable advice behind will make it easier.
4. Take a million pictures and steal everyone else’s
Take as many pictures as you possibly can these next few weeks. Steal everyone else’s pictures from the years past. Laugh at how horrible you looked as a red head or get inspired to dye your hair blonde again. Look back at the person you were and the people your friends were. This will help you appreciate that along the road you have changed for the better and found people to accompany you for the rest of your life.
5. Leave something for the kids next year
The four members of the senior class of 2011 left the following in our apartment: a badass nail polish stain, their signature on the wall, and a note and bottle of wine in the ceiling tiles. I remember looking at the note and drinking the wine thinking: “Wow, this is totally awesome. I should do something like this when I graduate.” I was touched by their advice left in the note and the little piece of their lives they brought into mine.
6. Compile a memory book with your friends of all the fun times you had
Create a book of memories. Of pictures, captions, sticky notes, anything that really is a memory. If possible, make a copy of the book for all of your friends to have or have a book making party. Crack open a box of wine and have fun looking back at the nights you can’t remember with the people you’ll never forget.
7. Write an open letter to your friends
Let the people who made these last four years amazing know how much they mean to you, why you appreciate them, and why it is so important to keep in touch. Let them know that you will miss them and this is not goodbye. If they are not graduating, pass on a tradition or a special ritual. If they are share a memory that you will never forget. These are the people who changed your life without any of them, your four years may have panned out differently.
It is okay to cry. In fact, it is more than okay to cry. You have spent the last four years of your life with these people at this place. Yeah the dining commons sucks and the police give you parking tickets for just about anything but you will miss it. This was probably your first experience living on your own. Your friends became your family and you grew up so much in the process. It is okay to cry happy or sad tears. In fact, it would be weird if you didn’t cry.
Try to look at this experience as a new beginning. It is sad that you are leaving yet, it is your time. Your chapter has closed. Luckily it has not closed permanently so you can still look back and laugh at all the stupid things you have done. Laugh at the crazy, dumb and just outright ridiculous moments you had over the last four years as you have a month left of laughing while making new memories.
Do something completely dumb and crazy. Go skinny dipping, go streaking, do a flash mob in class, throw a Disney princess party! You get the picture do something that is completely funny, stupid and (only a bit) illegal or frowned upon. Make memories. Look back and say “hey remember that time when…”. Do something totally uncharacteristic and brave get out of your comfort zone. Do something you always wanted to do but never had the courage to do.
11. Don’t harp on goodbye
Goodbyes are difficult for everyone. There will be tears and running mascara. Why does the goodbye have to be in the back of your mind. Don’t become depressed because you are leaving. Make the most of your time left and be grateful that you still have time to experience the craziness that is college and live it up! No regrets or ragets as some say.
Most the time we are running somewhere. We are running to a meeting or running to class. We forget what it around us. We never take in the scenery and the gorgeous flowers that grow outside the campus center or the awesome buildings and nature that surround us. Sit down for a minute and just take it all in. You will probably wonder why you haven’t noticed the daises growing outside the DC or the hundreds of students expressing themselves in different ways.
What better way to leave your mark on the school than to let someone else know why it is so awesome! Ask a tour guide if you can have a minute to talk (make sure you ask her before the tour) to students about the school and your experience. Ask an admissions counselor if you can talk to some students interested in activities you have took part in. Show these kids why they need to pick your school and why it is incredible.
14. Realize it is totally okay that you don’t have your shit together
Some 30 year olds don’t even have their shit together. you are still young. You can still make dumb decisions! Just because you are a graduate doesn’t mean you are now supposed to know everything and have your life and a job in place. You don’t have to have everything together and it is perfectly okay if you don’t. You are young and you just graduated and took a huge step in your life. It is okay if you have no idea where you are going once you graduate or what your plan is. Explore your options and apply for some jobs. Or just take some time to figure out what you want to do with your free time.
15. Never look back or hold back
Never look back and wish things turned out differently than they did. You laughed more in these four years than you probably ever will, you made stupid decisions but you learned from them and grew as a person. Remember the positive and try to forget the negative. In 40 years you won’t remember what Kelli said to you at the dining commons while you were getting ice cream or how your advisor was a complete B****. You will remember the good memories and the good times. Never hold back and never look back. If you really hated college all that much, why did you not drop out sooner? Remember the this experience as a once in a lifetime opportunity to learn some new material, learn about yourself, learn about friendship and learn how to party.
16. Remember your years of being young and stupid
As you graduate, remember the person that you were before you got to school and laugh. Laugh at all the stupid things you have done and all the times you have vomited. Laugh at the number of hookups you had and the good guys you met. Always remember your years when your biggest responsibility was turning in that essay at 12:45. These years have taught you more than you presently realize and you will look back and want just a month or two more of being young and stupid.