For members of the Class of 2022, graduation marks the beginning of a new chapter in their lives – one filled with excitement and uncertainty.
With graduation just around the corner, seniors are preparing for the transition from their undergraduate life to life beyond college and putting together their post-graduate plans. From working at the National Parks Service to tutoring through a student-run non-profit, seniors are preparing for a variety of different lifestyles and career paths, while others are still unsure of what lies ahead.
A week after graduation Sabrina Godin, a photojournalism major and a Hatchet photographer, will head to the Cape Cod National Seashore to start her job in customer service with the National Parks Service. Godin said she plans to work in this position while pursuing her passion for freelance journalism for two years, but is not focused on finding a long-term career yet.
“We put a lot of pressure on ourselves that we’re graduating to do exactly what we studied,” she said. “You’re only 22. How can you be so sure that that’s exactly what you want to do? It’s really important to allow yourself the chance to try different jobs.”
Godin said newspapers often look for local photographers for their stories, so she plans to specialize in photographing Cape Cod and the Massachusetts shore in her freelance work for publications like the Cape Cod Times and the Boston Globe.
She said she is passionate about the environment and often features the effects of climate change in her work.
“I’m actually working on a long term photo project that compares current photos of the National Park Service with old photos to talk about how the intention of the National Park Service was to preserve cultures and the environment, but because of climate change, that is no longer happening,” she said.
Journalism major Hana Hancock said she is not yet sure where she will be next, but she knows she wants to pursue a career in communications and marketing. Hancock said she is prepared for the marketing field, despite studying journalism, as she feels the two industries share similar skill sets.
“I think with both of those things, you definitely need to be a good writer and communicator,” she said.
She said she has found that the close of senior year requires an important balance between completing studies and searching for the next step in her career.
“I think it’s more about prioritizing, and obviously still giving a lot of effort to both things, but really thinking about what is the next step that I have to worry about? And for me, that feels more like a job as the next step as opposed to classes.”
Hancock currently holds an internship with the National Mall Trust, a nonprofit that works to preserve D.C.’s monuments. She began the internship in January and it will come to a close this summer.
She said she helps out with the non-profit’s social media and marketing team putting together social content promoting the Trust’s latest restoration projects online.
“It’s been really cool to see the conversations happening around the monuments and memorials and what they represent and how we can best represent the voices of people today in this country through the monuments even though they were built so long ago,” she said.
Dyvia Rath, a neuroscience major who will study pediatrics at medical school in the fall, said community service has played a key role in her undergrad experience, and she plans on continuing her volunteer work through the tutoring non-profit Global Guru even when she graduates.
She said the idea for her organization came after she worked her freshman year as a tutor for high school students at the School Without Walls. She said the service first took off when the pandemic began and she saw a need for free tutoring.
“When COVID happened, I think that there was definitely a gap in access to free tutoring that may have been provided after school in in-person settings,” she said.
The tutoring program that Rath developed along with several friends from her hometown of Jasper, Texas, offers virtual tutoring programs to high school students through an Amazon Web Services platform that Rath said is similar to Blackboard. She said her tutoring work started with students from Rath’s hometown, but the program has expanded to offer assistance to students internationally from Australia to Mexico.
“It’s a really nice thing to do outside of medicine, just because it’s not related to STEM at all,” she said. “It’s definitely very much an entrepreneurial project which I don’t think you really get much exposure to otherwise.”
Rath said plans to continue running her non-profit when she goes to medical school after graduating. She said she wants to make tutoring more accessible to students who don’t have access to reliable technology and the internet.
“There’s a lot of tutoring companies and other people that are trying to serve this need that charge a lot of money,” she said. “I think that tutoring is something that should be available to everyone.”