COLUMN: Life after school


Rob Le Cates

Katja Benz is a senior English major and can be reached at 217-581-2812.

Katja Benz, Columnist

I graduate in May. That’s a few short months away. Unfortunately, I have no idea what I’m doing after I walk across that stage.

You know, I’ve always had a plan for my next step: go do more school. Whether that was middle school, high school, community college, or a four-year university, there was always a plan.

Now- there isn’t.

To say I’m freaking out is almost an understatement and a lie at the same time. I’m freaking out but almost feel like I have no idea what I’m supposed to do.

Do I go to grad school? Do I take a year off? Do I not go back to school at all? I don’t know.

What’s worse is that nobody is telling me what to do. Nobody is saying that I have to go to grad school or take a year off or not go to grad school at all.

I’m getting told that I can do whatever I want, and now that I’m here I almost don’t know what to do with myself.

Honestly, I think grad school is the next best move. I like the field I’m going into, my applications are almost done (yay!), and then I’m one step closer to having the career that I want.

However, part of me doesn’t know if I need to chill out for a year. When you have two jobs, a decent social life, are a good student, and work out occasionally, all you need is a break.

However, I don’t know if the break I need is two months, two years, or too long. Nobody is here to tell me what to do. While I want the break, I’m scared the break will be too long, that I’ll be too unmotivated to school, or if I’ll like my career too much.

But, even worse, either way, I feel like I’d sink. They sort of teach you how to be an adult in college. By sort of be an adult, I mean that I still get all my meals cooked for me, there’s somewhat of a structure to my day and week, and I kinda know how to clean a shower.

Whereas when I am an adult, like a fully functional one, I’m gonna have to do it all: cook, clean, work, you know all the things that make adults adults.

That seems fun, in a weird way, but also kind of sucky. I’m not a great cook (as in all I can cook well is pasta), I’ve only ever used a hand vacuum in a dorm room and I don’t know how to use a plunger.

While I’m excited for this new chapter, I’m almost at a crossroads at what to do. I don’t really have a plan or thoughts on what to do.

So, if you have advice, leave it in the DEN Facebook comments. I’ll appreciate it.

Katja Benz is a senior English major. She can be reached at [email protected] or 217-581-2812.