Opinion A new beginning for MarySpring is just around the corner. My favorite weather guy promised a high of 57 degrees this week. For me the warm weather confirms the inevitable. Graduation is almost here. With only two months to finish the final projects for my master’s degree, the pressure is intense.
By: Mary Lebens, The Farmington Independent
Spring is just around the corner. My favorite weather guy promised a high of 57 degrees this week. For me the warm weather confirms the inevitable. Graduation is almost here. With only two months to finish the final projects for my master’s degree, the pressure is intense.
My class ring arrived this week, emblazoned with the name of my university and the emblem for my major on the side. My major is management information systems, so my ring sports a tiny picture of a computer monitor and a keyboard. I can’t wait to show it off to my computer geek co-workers. I bet they’ll be just a tiny bit jealous that they don’t have a stylish computer ring too.
The selection of miniature pictures you can pick for your class ring expanded since my high school graduation, when you were limited to maybe an honors insignia or a picture of a football. Now you can pick from such diverse symbols as a robot, the flag of Romania, a Porsche 911, Mickey Mouse and even a tiny picture of Al Pacino from the movie Scarface. I’m not sure how these images symbolize a student’s academic achievements. The tried-and-true option of putting my major on the side of my class ring is good enough for me. I might ultimately regret not having Scarface on the side, but despite my love for Al Pacino, I’ll take my chances.
Once I slipped on my class ring, graduation started to feel real. After five years it’s hard to believe there are just a few weeks left. I will truly miss my professors and classmates. Yet, as the Minneapolis alterative band Semisonic famously sang, “Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.” As I’m preparing to graduate, I’m anxiously awaiting a fat acceptance packet or a thin rejection letter from my top pick for a doctoral program.
It seems like just last weekend I was sipping a weak cup of coffee at my graduate school orientation, missing out on the State Fair to spend Saturday in a stuffy library planning my class schedule. Now that beginning has come to an end and it is time for a new beginning. Applying for a doctoral program is more like applying for a job than college. The process is filled with resumes and interviews, and a lot of networking to find the right spot. I might end up commuting between Farmington and Iowa, Indiana, or even Alberta, Canada. One of my classmates vacationed in Alberta a few years ago. He said the Canadian Rockies are beautiful, but advised me to wear a bear bell. I’m sure that is a great fashion statement to make on campus.
Graduation is a strange time when you pass through a heady brew of excitement, angst, and relief in a few short weeks. Even though I’ve graduated before, the feelings churning in my stomach are the same as they were when I was wearing my high school class ring. I am standing on the edge of a precipice, looking down over the lush valley below, not quite sure how to climb down or if I’ll even make it.
I checked the mailbox this morning, and it was empty. My dutiful mail carrier had not yet arrived. Now the letter might be there, waiting in the box, either thick with acceptance or thin with the stinging words of rejection. No matter what the news, I’ll let you know. The wonderful thing about living in Farmington is, even when you feel rejected, your friends and neighbors are always accepting of you.