Life After Graduation | Samantha - Edge Hill University

By Issy Goode - 18:47

My blogging interviews have followed me throughout the years and it was in May 2013 that I shared my very first interview, inspired by blogger Liv, who you can check out here. I read a post from Liv sharing the university experience of a friend and thought it was a brilliant way to get student voices heard. Rather than share every voice, I've shared the ones that follow my timeline and added a new experience each year. So now that graduation is almost a year behind me, it's about time you all heard from someone other than me about what life is really like after graduation...

Samantha graduated last year with a degree in Psychology from Edge Hill University. I met Samantha through VESL volunteering and was supposed to go to Thailand with her to teach English, unfortunately I had to pull out but Samantha went along and did some amazing work, and has, since I've known her, been a real inspiration to me, so I've always had her in mind to share some wise words about university and graduate life on my blog.

So, how does it feel to be a graduate? 
There are times when I have loved being a graduate. No more essays, and free time to myself. BUT the working world is pretty boring for me right now and the thought of doing a job I don’t like forever, terrifies me! I guess it’s bittersweet.

What’s been the biggest challenge? 
Getting a job was the biggest challenge. I had to work in a job which didn’t even require GCSE’s in order to get experience to do something I actually want to do, so it felt like going backwards. Countless interviews, and even though I had a first class degree, I've found that paid experience seems to mean more sometimes. 

What’s your living situation?
I live back with my parents now and it was hard at first to adjust. You have your independence taken away from you a little bit but luckily, my family are all pretty independent anyway so I still live my ‘own’ life. 

What are the best and worst things about graduate life? 
The best thing has been securing a graduate placement in Sri Lanka. Because of my degree, I was offered a place to volunteer in psychiatric hospitals for 3 months and travel at the same time which was the BEST experience ever. The worst thing though has been moving away from all of my best friends. Moving back home has been a lonely experience in some ways because my best friends are now scattered all around the country and it’s not always easy to find a time to suit both of you, and to then travel 100 miles to go and see them. 

What’s been your biggest achievement since you graduated? 
Definitely spending 3 months in Sri Lanka doing a psychology placement. I grew so much as a person, saw the most amazing things, and gained the most amazing experience I could have ever imagined. 

Do you have any plans/goals for the coming months/years? 
Yes! I have been accepted onto a masters course to study Social Work and I can’t freakin’ wait to go back to Uni! 

Is graduate life as you expected? 
To be honest, I don’t know what I expected. I think it’s probably harder than I thought it would be to get a job and I think life can be boring now that you have to make your own entertainment - so I guess, life’s what you make it! 

If you had the opportunity, would you do university all over again? 
I want to say yes, but no I wouldn’t. I LOVED uni but I’m glad my undergraduate degree is done and dusted. You can’t stay on the same page of your life forever. 

What’s your social life been like as a graduate in comparison to what it was like at university? 
Haaaa, awful. Tinder is my new best friend :’) It’s a lot harder now that you’re not just thrown into social situations, let’s put it that way! 

What would you say are the biggest differences between the first year of university life, and the first year of graduate life? 
First year of Uni was all about new things, and learning to be an adult whereas my first year of graduate life has been both boring but also incredible. I guess I’ve been lucky in that I’ve spent 3 months abroad because I think I’d have lost my mind otherwise. 

Do you feel you’ve changed much since you graduated? 
I now know what I want to do with my life, whereas when I graduated, I didn’t really have any direction. I’m also a lot more confident in myself and care less about what other people think.

Samantha with friends from a recent experience volunteering in Sri Lanka
Have you seen your university friends much since you graduated? 
I’ve seen them a few times - it’s so much harder now that I’m miles away but we definitely make an effort on social media. I’ve also been away for 3 months so I couldn’t see them for that bit of time!

How does it feel to be considered an adult? 
I can’t say that I actually consider myself an adult.. does anyone?! I think we’re all making it up as we go along aren’t we?

Do you think that university was worthwhile? 
Yes, absolutely! I know university isn't for everyone but for me it was 100% worth every moment. Going to university has played a huge part in who I am today. 

What advice would you give to those soon to be graduates? 
Embrace the time you have left at Uni because the real world isn’t always an easy place to be in. You have to create your own opportunities, and for some, it’s not always the easiest thing to do. Also, start searching for jobs (or failing that, go travelling until you know what you want to do/run out of money!).

Finally, I'd just like to say thank you for interviewing me and good luck to all those undergrads who are about to take on the world!

If you'd like to know more about Samantha's adventures and graduate life, check her blog out here. 
*All photos are courtesy of Samantha 

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  1. Thanks so much for having me on your blog, lovely :) xxx

    Sam // What I Know Now

    1. My pleasure - thank you more for contributing! xxx


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