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May 28, 2019

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Graduation season brings mixed emotions

The idea of “graduation” can conjure up a range of emotions veering from the initial exhilaration of finding your future enclosed in university acceptance letters to furious preparations for your impending departure before culminating in a vehement refusal to accept that one stage of your educational life is drawing to a close. Ironically, while we celebrate students graduating, it is also important to acknowledge the challenges, setbacks and disappointments which have ultimately helped you prepare effectively for the future. Success, and our definition of what constitutes success, remains subjective. So embrace those learning experiences which have made you a stronger person.

If you are graduating, or at the initial stages of this process, you may already have a clear direction and notion of how this can come to fruition. Or you may not. Either way, it’s OK to deviate from your predetermined pathway and for your meticulously crafted planning to alter.

The main thing to remember is that there are no mistakes. Calculated risks are part of what it means to be human: to err is human. Of course, you should plan, but where possible also embrace the uncertainty of life in all its forms. Also, remember that while showing the ability to learn something new is a vital part of your future, so too is being compassionate, humble and empowering others — all of these embolden you as well.

Perhaps it isn’t part of your carefully honed application but the intangible aspect of your character, the idiosyncrasies which define you, are sometimes more compelling than the numbers and letters next to your name.

It’s never too late to embrace a new service project, a new extra-curricular activity or a new initiative which will help you stand out in a sea of similar candidates. It could even be as simple as an act of unexpected kindness, a perceptible attempt to engender change in yourself and the world around you.


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