Former St. Ed’s student describes post-grad life, pursues career in writing

Brooke Blanton

Graduating from St. Edward’s University was one of the most surreal, exciting, proud and terrifying moments of my life so far. I was in a pretty good spot; I had a job lined up that I was excited for, I had a place to live, I was staying in the city that I’d fallen in love with over the previous three and a half years.

And yet, I couldn’t shake the overwhelming feeling that I was stepping off my safe little cliff into the abyss of adulthood, where I would have to get up early every single weekday and go to work, for the rest of my life. The concept of eventual retirement seemed too impossible at the time.

It took me a while to finally grasp the fact that my life was now work and work was my life. Sure, I’d get evenings and weekends and I’d still have my free time, vacations, friends and family. But as soon as I graduated, the fact couldn’t escape me: You now live to work.

It became all the more apparent to me how important it is to love what you do. I’d heard this a million times. If you love what you do, you never work a day in your life, and all the other cliches.

But your first full-time job outside of college becomes your second home; your coworkers, your family; your paycheck, your survival. I would no longer have the end of the semester to work toward, or even the end of undergrad.

There are no defining landmarks to reach once you’ve graduated, and man, was that a scary thought.

It’s been nearly two years now, and I’ve been incredibly lucky. My first job was the perfect one for me right after St. Ed’s. It was in social media, a style of writing that I became excited about during an internship. My coworkers were incredible and fun and became my very best friends, and it felt okay to be part of the never-ending cycle of work, eat, sleep, repeat, because it was such a great working environment.

My second job, which I just started in November, is even more perfect for this stage in my life. I’m still writing, which is what I hope to do for my entire career, and now it’s even more challenging with bigger clients and higher stakes. I feel inspired and exhausted every day, which I think is a sign of a successful day’s work.

The funny thing is, I got both of these jobs through connections that I gained during my time at St. Ed’s. Of course, my degree and my relevant classes sure helped, but I wouldn’t have gotten the jobs, or even known about them, if I had my head stuck in my books my whole college career. Yes, studying and getting good grades is vital, but in my experience, it’s the relationships you form that make the difference in post-grad life.

Get to know everyone you can. Do internships not just to build your resume, but to meet people. Take advantage of the vast and invaluable community of connections at St. Ed’s, especially the amazing professors. That way, when it’s time for you to step into the adulthood abyss, you’ll have a few great people to catch you.