Last year I wrote a post on linked in called “I’m Young”. The purpose of this article was to write advice to yourself with the tagline #ifIwas22. This lead to many fruitful and insightful posts. At the time I was 21 so I wrote this letter to myself, outlining my goals for the year to come. I have written my responses in purple.
Where do I want to be at 22? I am going to change my diction from “want” to “I will be…”
I am going to graduate school after my undergraduate degree. I am going to get a passport and backpack through Europe with my boyfriend. I already have a backpack now I just need a passport. A cost spreadsheet will soon be constructed… because I loved my spreadsheets.
I traveled! I didn’t take my boyfriend with me but I traveled to Austria, Germany, and the Chez Republic. This was a study abraod program and my last quarter of my undergraduate career.
My new role in my lab is to manage papers, publication of those papers, as well as some grant writing. So I will be published by the time I get my BA. Hopefully, my authorship will be 2nd or 3rd (fingers crossed).
The paper wasn’t published… But I do have many opportunities to do my own research next year which means: first/second author publication!
I am going to take some time off to calm-the-fuck-down. I work hard, but sometimes I forget to breathe. My boyfriend is really good and regulating me. For example, when I am in that unique sleep deprived state and I been studying hours on end to a point where I forget what time of day it is. He usually makes me eat or go see the outside world for a bit.
Side note: he will be a student after his military career is over… so one graduate student and one undergraduate student… this will be interesting I see Ramen and cheap beer in my future.
My boyfriend is now out of the military and a forestry student. I did take breaks, going camping, hiking, and went out dancing/ drinking. I do have a lot of Ramen. Cheap beer is gross so I’m still not buying it…
Apply & Get into Grad School
I have graduate schools on my list of 10 that I doubt that I have the academic rigor to get into. The funny thing about college is you are supposed to find yourself, and you do that through finding out what you are not. When you take classes to see if you can cut it as a doctor or computer engineer your GPA suffers. Personally, I wish there was a get out of jail free card where you can take a class to rule things out and not screw over your GPA. Ok. Rant. Over. Despite the numbers, I am going to build my CV and apply everywhere that has the programs I want. I am rolling the dice… Hopefully a year from now I get the numbers I want.
After SEVEN rejection letters I got into graduate school! In hindsight, I could have reduced this rejection by applying to fesable schools. I didn’t get into the Ph.D program but I did get into the masters. So that’s a win.
I am tired of explaining away my age. I have been on my own since I was 16 and have supported myself and done pretty well at it.I am tired of listing off the reasons I am not the 21-year-old that don’t have their shit together and just left their parent’s house. I am going to stop explaining away that 21-year-olds have different life experiences and maturity levels. I remember one day in class a professor asked by a show of hands how many of use have worked (i.e. other commitments other than school) shocker: everyone raised their hands. We live in an age where you have to work hard. I work hard and thus I am going to stop explaining away my youth because age doesn’t make you inadequate to those who are older.
I am 21 and #ifiwere22 I want to be what I was afraid to be before.
Some how I’ve managed to reach all my #ifiwere22 goals. I know I work my ass off but I am still supprised when I make it to the finish line. I’m definetly going to do this same excerise for #ifiwere23, because you have to have goals if you want to go anywhere.