I graduated…..now what?

Well, I graduated Magna Cum Laude from Quinnipiac University on Sunday (despite being scared out of my mind to do so).

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And what has post grad life given me so far? A lot primetime The Price is Right specials, naps, and trying to get a hold of this adult thing.

To save some breathe for when everyone asks “what are you ACTUALLY doing post grad?” I decided to just share it with the whole wide world on Sparkle and Shine. 

Starting on Monday, I began my online Master’s courses for Interactive Digital Design from Quinnipiac. I’m excited to dive more into learning coding, Adobe programs, and different multimedia techniques. It’s definitely going to be harder than any of my other classes from my Undergrad years at QU, but I’m very excited to get started. Plus, I’m lucky to have my mom, grandparents, aunts, and best friends as an amazing support system for whenever the going gets tough.

I’ve been in love for the past three years – with Sparkle and Shine. I’ve loved coming up with what I want to write about, putting the piece together by creating graphics and typing the story, sharing it on social media, and watching everything come together. I’m hoping that with my Master’s in IDD and my undergrad degree, I will be able to further my professional career and Sparkle and Shine.

More importantly, since I will be living at home, I will not have as many responsibilities on my plate. As you readers know, I was constantly boggled down with Res Life, my sorority, my school television station, a full-time course load, and so much more. Now, I will have so much more spare time to focus on the Sparkle and Shine blog and video blog. I’m hoping that with my spare time and my new Master’s courses, I will be able to continue Sparkle and Shine and all of its contents.

In the meantime, here’s to sparkling through the next few months as I begin this post-grad journey!!

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Truth is….I’m scared out of my mind to graduate.

There, I said it.

Ask my best friend, my sorority family, my mom, my residents, and even my favorite professor – they would all tell you that. But now I am admitting it to the entire World Wide Web.

I get a little bit open and honest sometimes on Sparkle and Shine, such as talking about loosing my father or why I enjoy college as a single gal. So here we are again with my current emotions (ew, I know, emotions).

Shockingly enough, it has nothing to do with all the (overwhelming) responsibilities that come with graduating, the FOMO that will exist because of some of my best friends still being together as undergrads, or the fact that I’m not truly done with school because of my IDD Grad classes. What scares me the most is the fact that the routine is done and there is just one giant empty space that looks like a black hole called “the future.”

Since pre-school at the age of four, school has been what our lives have consisted of. Swap out dance practices and Gymboree practices to elementary school sports and spelling bees, swap out high school swim meets and newspaper meetings for sorority chapter meetings and study group sessions. Our lives have revolved around our education and extracurriculars since we were four years old. Now, we are 22, and that routine is about to change.

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I live for routine the same way that Perez Hilton lives for celebrity gossip. Waking up, setting goals and to-do lists for the day that help me achieve my overall dream, working out, doing work – it’s all a little bit different each day, but it still comes down to being the overall same thing.

Now, it’s time to set a new schedule and a new routine. I have no idea what that will consist of, especially since the last thing I want from my life is to live a boring, unfulfilled, melancholy life. And it’s the fact that I have no idea what the future will hold that I’m so scared of -walking across that stage, ADPi stole around my neck and cap on my head, and a giant blank page in front of me. Then what?

It should excite me, I know. But for a Type-A personality that likes to have control over everything, a giant blank page, hell a blank chapter, is terrifying. It means that everything I have had planned for the past 22 years is over and it’s time to make a new plan for another 22 years. Where does one even start with that?

We are raised with the concept of going to school, going to college/trade school. So this entire time, I walked a very similar path as my peers. There were choices along the way, but for the most part it was always along a singular path. Now, that path is just a giant field to make any choices, take any actions, do what I want.

And that terrifies me. That’s a lot of “new,” lots of changes, and lots of decisions. (All of which I’ll be sharing with you!)

At the end of the day, the same people that I mentioned above, the ones who listen to me have weekly panic attacks to about the future and listen to me stress cry about it, are the reasons I know I’ll get through it. Cause after being talked off the fictional ledge when I’m staring into the abyss of my future, I have them as my biggest supporters to tackle my scary post-grad future.

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What time is it? SUMMERTIME!

What time is it?
Summertime, it’s our vacation
What time is it?
Party time, that’s right, say it loud

What time is it?
The time of our lives, anticipation
What time is it?
Summertime, school’s out scream and shout!!

So no, readers, I am, unfortunately, not staring in a new High School Musical.

I am, however, just excited to be able to finally start my summer vacation!!

I have been done with finals for about two weeks now, but I didn’t get to completely come home for the summer until the start of this week.

Every year, Quinnipiac hosts a “Senior Week” for it’s graduating class. It’s one last goodbye party for the seniors – a booze-filled week, jamming in as many last minute memories (or stories, if you don’t remember) as possible.So, it’s pretty much heaven.

But to make sure those senior devils stay alive until graduation, heaven need a few junior angels to babysit them. Myself and 29 other juniors were selected to go as Junior Crew to chaperon and execute the events. Based on that description, it may not sound like fun. However, it was by far one of the most fun weekends I had at Quinnipiac.

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But following this meant facing reality and the dreaded g-word…..graduation. Some of my best friends just graduated – a handful of people who helped me fall in love with Quinnipiac, Alpha Delta Pi, journalism, and myself. I watched people who I couldn’t imagine my college career without take their diploma that they have worked so hard for. At times, it was even a punch in the gut that there is more to life outside of the Quinnipiac bubble and that life, is the real world.

BUT MY BIG COMES BACK NEXT YEAR TO COMPLETE HER M.B.A! So I am still lucky enough to have my partner in crime in Hamden and don’t have to worry just yet about saying that goodbye. (Even though I have cried a handful of times as people remind me that Katherine is coming back. It’s just the whole principal and concept of graduation, you know? It got me.)

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Now, I’m back home in the most perfect state of New Jersey. Between continuing to intern for TheCelebrityCafe.com and work at CVS, I will be really focusing on Sparkle and Shine this summer.

Somehow this summer, my baby turns two. I’ve seen so much progress since I first sat down behind my laptop and created it. This summer, I want to continue expanding and continue to create my opportunities for myself. I have tons of e-mails to go through of sponsored post opportunities, different partnerships, and more. Through these e-mails, I will continue to build up Sparkle and Shine – and nothing makes me happier than watching my baby grow.

Stay with me, readers, as Sparkle and Shine shines as bright as the summer sun.
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College: What You Put In Is What You Get Out

Yesterday, my best friend in the entire world, Julia, graduated high school. In the fall, Julia will be becoming a Bobcat with me at Quinnipiac. Words cannot describe how happy I am that we will be going to college together. We really are putting the forever in best friends forever.

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Whenever we talk about college, I always tell her one thing – what you put into college is what you will get out of it. If there is any life lesson that I learned from college, it was that.

In college, you get to make your own decisions. Are you going to focus on your social life? Are you going to focus on your academics? Each and every decision ends up counting towards the end result.

If you take the time to study for your sociology test, you are going to get a better grade than if you didn’t study.
If you go out and meet people, you are going to end up knowing a lot more people on campus.

See, it’s a very simple equation – what you put in is what you are going to get out. You will reap the benefits of your own actions.

In my first year at Quinnipiac, I made a lot of aspects a priority – my education, my social life, and my extracurricular activities. During my first year, I am proud to say I made dean’s list both semesters, have a group of friends I consider like a family, have a group of sisters thanks to my sorority who mean the world to me, am a proud member of our award winning school newspaper, this year’s general manager of our school’s yearbook, as well as a writer for Quinnipiac’s chapter of Her Campus. As hard as it was to keep everything a priority, the effort that I put into it ultimately paid off in the end. There where many days when I ran low on sleep, but to say all of what I accomplished freshman year is an amazing feeling.

Everyone should be proud of what they have to say of their accomplishments after each year of college. By opening up your eyes to see what you truly want to accomplish and by putting in the effort to reach those goals, you will see results.

The same rule goes for life – what you put in is what you are going to get out.

So get out there, chase your dreams, and do exactly what you want to do because in the end, you’re going to see a result from your actions.