Career, Student Life, Study, Work

The End of the School Year

A photo of victoria college from the bottom or the archway that has an inscription written on it that reads "the truth shall set you free"

The end of the school year is here, and I don’t know about you, but as much of a relief as it is to have made it through another year of school, it’s also kind of bittersweet for me. For some reason, I always get sentimental about the courses that I’ll never take again. This year has been especially bittersweet because I’m so close to becoming an alumnus. After I complete my summer courses, I will be preparing to graduate. It’ll be a welcome, celebratory end to a long tedious journey, but also a sad end because I really like being a student.

In any case, as the end draws near to this chapter of my life, I’ve begun thinking a lot about what I’ll be leaving U of T with. Of course, I’ll have my fancy degree, but more importantly, as I re-enter the workforce I’ve been thinking about what skills I’ve acquired to make me more competitive in the labour market. Surprisingly, this has been a lot harder than I expected.

a photo of the UC quad out door hall that leads to the junior common room, there are white ornate pillars along the right side of the hall and a brick wall on the left, above the hall or more white ornate beams that repeat until you get to a wooden door at the end of the hall

You see, I’ve spent the past couple of years immersed in reading and writing, as have the majority of us. But what does that mean? I guess I can confidently say that my reading comprehension has greatly increased since I’ve come back. I’m also a lot more analytical about the information that I consume, and have come to understand the importance of being objective. But what does this mean for getting a job?

Well, I guess to be fair, I’ve already built up a pretty good foundation for my CV before coming back to finish my degree, but what skills have I added? Thinking about it more, I would say that the most important skill that I’ve sharpened while coming back is definitely my communications skills. Not only have I become a stronger writer (which, not many people are), but my comprehension has increased immensely. These two things together are extremely valuable skill-sets on their own, but coupled with the heavy analytical skills that come with a U of T education, I can confidently say that I am highly marketable in the job market.

a photo of a lamp outside of the emmanuel college entrance, it is hanging from a grey stone arched ceiling and behind it is the upper portion of an wooden, arched doorway

But to be honest, as much as I plan to work for a year or so, I am a lot more motivated now than ever to continue on into grad school. At the beginning of this journey, I came back simply to tie loose ends and finish the degree that I left unfinished, but as I immersed myself into my program and became a deeper part of the U of T community, I realized that deep inside I absolutely love being in academia. I like researching, I like writing, I like learning. I’ve gained so much in knowledge in the short while that I’ve come back, but I think more importantly, I’ve begun to truly understand and map out the things that I don’t know and this has been the core of my thirst for more education.

So yeah, perhaps this isn’t the end after all, and the more I think about it, the more I can’t wait! Happy summer folks!