Graduation!

It’s official: I’ve graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Wisconsin-Superior! At the ceremony, I wore a Mexico sash, (from studying abroad) a Sigma Tau Delta sash and cords, (black and red) and Magna Cum Laude honors cords (the yellow ones). I can now call myself a UWS alumni. Has reality kicked in yet that I’m no longer a student? Yes, I suppose so. I’ve begun to job hunt and think about student loans and other responsibilities that are coming my way.

944346_10153796513083537_1986019971596453770_n12391290_10153261097592727_4523196676089287438_n

I wish I could say that I’m optimistic about what the future holds. I was very excited the night before the ceremony, and a bit excited the day of. However, I’ve also experienced a mix of emotions lately. I’ve moved back in with my parents and brother, who are in the process of renovation and moving into a new home a few miles away from the house we currently live in. Soon I’ll be helping them out with projects at the new house as well.

My mood has been all over the board for a few reasons. I love my family to death, but I’ve become so used to living on my own, I need to readjust to family dynamics, sharing space and resources, etc. My main issue though: I’ve called Superior, WI my home for the past four and a half years. I’m leaving behind friends, I won’t see my boyfriend as often, (he lives in Duluth) and job hunting in a small community during the off-season is no easy task. A part of me wants to return to the Superior/Duluth area already since job prospects are higher there than in my hometown. Another part of me feels as though I should drop everything and travel abroad now. Wisconsin doesn’t always cut it, and as I age, I wonder why I put up with winter (hello, seasonal affective disorder). I envy people who aren’t afraid to drop their 9-5 job and travel the world, making money doing odd jobs and meeting interesting people from across the globe.

On a side note, my blog is one year old today. A year ago, I was preparing to study abroad in Oaxaca, Mexico. That was a journey that only sparked my wanderlust further. I am here today, just as eager to travel, and to learn about the world.

 

Advertisements

What happened to the fall?

Well, it’s been far too long since I’ve posted. If there’s anyone out there still following me, I salute you, dear friend. I simply don’t have the time to update regularly, and while I’m in school, my life doesn’t seem interesting enough to post about.

What have I been up to for the past two months? I’ll make this as brief as I can.

I’ve fallen out of love. And into love again. I’m in a new relationship, and I’m happier than I could have imagined. My boyfriend’s name is Brandon, and we are very compatible together in terms of interests, personality, humor, etc. We were coworkers this past spring/summer, which is how we met.

12105926_10201084642355002_5866372919649966916_n

Brandon and I, October 2015

I am halfway through my last semester of college. My grades have been excellent thus far, so I am rather pleased. Classes consume much of my time, but they’re fairly enjoyable overall. Shakespeare online is my least favorite class, simply because I find old English to be a bit dull and difficult to understand. I’m also Vice-President of the World Student Association, and we’re in the process of planning Cultural Night, the largest event on campus, which is coming up in two weeks time.

I am having some car troubles. I have to replace my front brake pads very soon. The oxygen sensor is also not working, but I will wait on repairing that for a while yet (it’s not a dire fix, while brakes on the other hand are very important).

I am beginning to think about life after graduation now. To be quite honest, I’m a bit afraid for life after graduation. Student loans will be looming over my head in the near future; I have mountains of debt to pay. I will likely be living with my parents as free room and board can’t be beat. However, job prospects in my hometown are slim as I am from a town of 2000 people. I will likely move back to the Twin Ports area after a few months, or perhaps head somewhere like Minneapolis for a job, next summer or fall at the soonest I’d imagine.

I want to teach abroad next fall, but the deadlines for applications are coming up too quickly, and focusing on school now takes up too much of my time. I wanted to apply for the JET program for 2016, but the deadline is so soon, and I didn’t have the time to collect all the needed forms and to complete the paperwork. Perhaps next time. I’m still thinking South Korea could be a viable option for next fall.

To be continued, friends.

Let’s try and finish out the semester strong.

The semester is finished! Let summer begin!

I completed my second to last semester today. It was a tough one I will admit; there was one class in particular that was very stressful. I am happy to be done for the semester and to have the summer ahead of me. Question is, when will we have summer weather? Wisconsin has been rainy/cloudy and 40-45 degrees for the past few weeks.

While it would be easy enough to waste summer away being lazy, I do have a number of tasks I would like to accomplish this summer. Here are two lists- a “fun list” and a “practical list.”

Fun list:

1. Read any fiction novel by Haruki Murakami that I can get my hands on

2. Create a summer reading list and follow through with it

3. Learn how to use some kind of music mixer program to seamlessly blend one song into the next for a dance playlist

4. Go salsa dancing in the Twin Cities this summer

5. Celebrate Homecoming and spend time with my brother, who is visiting at the end of July

Practical list:

1. Work as much as I possibly can (at Barnes & Noble, and doing online writing consultations for my on-campus job)

a. Squirrel away money to pay my student debt

b. Start setting up a budget and figuring out how much to pay towards loans each month after graduation

2. Apply for the Peace Corps and similar programs

3. Put serious research and thought into what I will do after graduating this December

4. Find a month-to-month rental for the fall – this will need to be done ASAP

5. If my boyfriend goes to grad school right away: learn how to make a long-distance relationship work

What are your plans for the summer?

Senior capstone presentation

Today has been a good day.

To start off with, I was awarded two English scholarships for the fall semester, which is my last semester here. Despite only being here for one more semester, I will still receive the full amount that would ordinarily be given for the full school year!

Then this evening, the English majors who are graduating this year (either this semester or next) gave a brief presentation on our senior capstone posters, which is the product of several papers we have written to create this final project. I analyzed Haruki Murakami’s novel After Dark from a gender studies perspective. The English faculty, along with a few writing and language professors, were in attendance. I am very glad that my parents made the hour and a half drive to watch the presentation, and I introduced them to my English professors and Spanish teacher. My parents also met a few of my classmates. Also, my mother, outgoing as she is, enjoyed meeting with everyone.

Four years of hard work has boiled down to this moment. I’m glad the presentation went well.

I should also mention– I started working as a barista at Barnes & Noble. I will be working weekends, so come visit me in Duluth at the mall!

11133795_10152824067567727_162084257518570671_n11204873_10152824069022727_5279908917569878477_n

New job & ramblings of a young adult

Hello, followers!

I’m so sorry I haven’t had time to blog. I plan to make ‘wordpressing’ a regular thing once summer is here.

For now, I’m here to just check in and let you know what’s been happening recently.

I interviewed for a barista position with Barnes & Noble earlier this month, and was hired on the spot. I went in on Friday for orientation to learn some of the basics. My training should begin Friday now, fingers crossed (there have been some minor hassles with ID issues).

I will also be working as a writing consultant over the summer, a job I currently hold. However, there will be online consultations, which I will be doing on a rotating basis between two other consultants. In other words, I will only be doing consultations a few days out of each month this summer. I may need to get a third job as well to help pay the bills… and my tuition.

The end of the semester is approaching now; there is less than a month left. I will be scrambling to work on posters, papers and presentations over the next few weeks.

I almost forgot to mention- my brother flew in from Utah on Friday, and I spent a three day weekend with him and my family. My parents and I usually only get to see my brother once or twice a year, so it was great to spend time with him, hiking, seeing waterfalls, visiting friends, drinking coffee, and indulging in sweets.

Today, my dad had his gallbladder removed. He’s been having some health issues lately, but his surgery went well. He’ll be in the hospital overnight, and I plan to return home again tomorrow to check in and to say goodbye to my brother before he goes back to Utah this Friday. Beyond all these things, I’m still paying for car insurance, rent, groceries, and generally appearing to be a successful adult on the outside. I figure I can make my confidence work by “faking it till I make it.”

I’ll be back when the workload dies down a bit.

Hope you are all doing well and staying fairly stress-free.

Art exhibit

Tomorrow at my university, I will be discussing my trip to Oaxaca. Our travel group set up an art exhibit of the works we created while abroad. There is a mix of 2-D and 3-D works, along with clay sculptures and a collaborative looming piece made by us in Oaxaca. We all took classes while abroad, technically, so we are getting credit for the classes we signed up for. I’m getting 6 art credits just by having spent two weeks living and breathing art in Oaxaca. Pretty neat!

10957345_10152631158677727_8104077427613980329_n

Our trip leader, Kathy, is currently sick, so I will be the one speaking in her place, welcoming everyone to the show,  leading the Q&A, and so forth. I think this will be a nice opportunity to let people here in Wisconsin know about our trip to Mexico. I invited a few of my professors to attend as well.

For my friends: the exhibit is taking place in the 3rd floor gallery of Holden at UWS from noon-1pm.

Until next time,

Sarah