Life After Undergrad: What Path to Take

By Marina Krivonossova on January 8, 2019

As freshmen in college, we see the world as our oyster. Around every corner are new possibilities — what classes to take, what major to pursue, what sports to engage in. But, as with most things, our time in undergrad comes to an end surprisingly quickly, with the real world running at us in full speed as our senior year approaches its end. After high school, we chose to pursue a bachelor’s degree. As we obtain our degrees after four years of classes, we must make a decision regarding what path to pursue upon graduation. Do I get a full-time job? Do I carry on with school? Do I take a break and travel the world? Here are a few ideas about what to do now that you’re finishing up your undergraduate degree.

“According to the 2015 US Census, 32% of US residents hold at least a bachelor’s degree, 9% a master’s degree, and 2% a doctorate.” -The Conversation (image via pixabay.com)

1) Get a master’s degree. Do you seek to further your studies? Do you crave knowledge and grasp each and every opportunity to learn something new? Are you passionate about a topic which you want an in-depth understanding of?  Not only does graduate school provide you with the opportunity to further your studies and acquire vast knowledge that wasn’t at your disposal during your undergraduate studies, but it also opens the door for more job opportunities upon graduation. After all, there is certainly some truth behind the newly coined saying that a master’s degree is the new bachelor’s.

 

“Volunteers in the Philippines work with their communities on projects in education, the environment, and youth development.” -Peace Corps (image via pixabay.com)

2) Join the Peace Corps. Do you have a passion for volunteering and helping the world? Do you want to spend a couple years living abroad in an environment completely different from what you’re used to? Do you want an opportunity to get funds to help you pay off your student loans? Do you want valuable experience to add to your resume? Then Peace Corps seems like the right fit for you. Peace Corps is an organization which provides individuals who have obtained bachelor’s degree with the opportunity to participate in typically a 2-year volunteer program, during which they are sent to a foreign country for work ranging from working as an English teacher to bettering the environment, to aiding in community development. The Peace Corps has something for individuals with any background and any interests, and they even pay for volunteers’ food, travel, and housing expenses, hence making it a desirable option for those who have low (or no) funds once they’ve completed their undergrad career.

Inc. reports that, On average, every corporate job opening attracts 250 resumes.” Put in the extra effort to make yours stand out! (image via pexels.com)

3) Dive into the world of full-time work. Tired of school? Ready to put your degree to work? Then it might just be time to apply for those full-time jobs. Whether you got a degree in English, computer science, international relations, or anything else, there are numerous companies searching for new graduates to fill their entry-level positions. Websites like Indeed and Snagajob can prove useful in your job search endeavors, while websites like Glassdoor can help you evaluate the company and particular position you’re considering applying for. If there is a company you’ve been dying to work for or get involved with, there’s no better time to do this than right after completing your bachelor’s degree.

(image via pixabay.com)

4) Take a year off. Are you completely unaware of what you want to do with your life? Are you second-guessing the major in which you got an undergraduate degree? Are you wondering if you’re in the country where you want to spend the rest of your life? If any (or all) of these questions cloud your mind on a regular basis, you might want to consider taking a year off after you graduate. Organizations like Remote Year aim to provide people with the opportunity to work as they travel, which means you’ll be able to earn some money while you put yourself out there and see the world. In doing so, you’ll be able to learn more about yourself and the world around you, resulting in a more clear view of your future and what you want to do upon your return. Diving into a new commitment right after diving out of a four year one isn’t for everybody, and it certainly doesn’t have to be. Consider giving yourself some time off before committing to more school, a new job, or several years of volunteer work.

Do any of these appeal to you? Do you have more suggestions for students struggling to find their way around the world upon graduating with a bachelor’s degree? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section! And remember, no matter what you do — no matter what path you choose to pursue — you will find your place in life.

By Marina Krivonossova

Uloop Writer
A writer, baker, travel enthusiast, and advocate for human rights.

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