It’s that time of the year again for course selections. And though it’s a critical event every year, it’s even more so this time around. Why? Because it’s the last time I’ll be doing it.
Yep…this coming year marks my last year of undergraduate studies. It’s hard to believe that it’s already been three years since I first stepped on to U of T soil...three years since my Frosh week at Trinity College where I first met one of my best friends… three years since I had my first class in Convocation Hall, that terrifying stadium-like “classroom”.
Naturally, much has happened since then. And as I face the future…as I face this so-called “real world” that everyone talks about, a myriad of questions race through my mind with almost no end in sight. Where am I going after my undergrad? What am I doing? Should I apply to grad school? But to study what? Should I just dive into the workforce? Do I travel first? What should I do?
After high school, I was set on pursuing journalism. I had the privilege of having teachers who lit my way, who ignited my passions in writing, history, and politics. This continued on in university as I took more courses in international relations, development, and sociology that further defined and refined my interest. I got involved in student publications, contributing my writing and even taking on editorial positions. I knew exactly what I was going to do after my undergrad.
But alas, life is not meant to be orderly. Somewhere in the middle, we break a leg, spill some orange juice, die, or, as is my current situation, discover something new about ourselves.
For me, it happened in September of last year. I got this kickass internship as a Social Media Coordinator at this equally kickass NGO (hello jhr!) and my world has been turned upside down since then. Suddenly I was caught in the middle of the fast-paced and always exciting world of technology. I was learning things I only vaguely knew about and at rapid speed too. Compounding this was this incredibly engaging and stimulating class that I took last year about technology and its effects on community (hello, Prof. Wellman!). I was and continue to be rapt by all these developments!
Suddenly my firm convictions of going into j-school after my undergrad at U of T aren't so firm anymore. Suddenly I find myself questioning where I want to go and what I want to do. I am torn. I feel like I'm being pulled in all sorts of directions. Should I focus on my writing? Or delve deeper into non-profit work? Should I continue to ride on this thrilling social media wave? What do I focus on? I'm dabbling in all these fields, loving it all, but still unsure of what exactly I want to specialize in.
At the same time, however, sometimes these feelings of confusion are overtaken by my excitement. I am ecstatic to know that I live in an age that does not limit me…that all these different industries are intersecting with one another like never before and there's no need to box oneself in anymore. I've learned this best at jhr, an organization that is an amalgamation of everything that I am passionate about: journalism, non-profit work, human rights, and social media. It is reassuring and immensely satisfying to know that there is a place, a space for all of this and that I'm right in the thick of it.
But still...there is that unshakeable feeling of uncertainty and every day I ask myself, which way...is my way?