It’s that time of year. It seems that everyone is writing advice to the Class of 2013. Some of it is really useful and worth paying attention to—especially because the working world and the academic world are not the same.
Here are two posts I think are particularly worth reading.
Here are a few important pieces of mom-advice:
Do not buy an entirely new wardrobe yet. Yes, you may need something other than baggy sweats and beer-branded t-shirts to wear to work. By all means, invest in an outfit or two. But wait until you see what the culture of your new workplace is before going any further into wardrobe replacement. You want to be sure you’re investing in clothes that you’ll get good use from.
The same thing applies to going from high school to college. Sure, buy a university-logo item or two, but don’t buy up the entire spirit wear section of the bookstore. Wait and see what you’ll actually want once you’re at college.
Leave more time than you think you’ll need for the commute. Getting to your new job during rush hour is not the same as getting to the building for a 10am interview. Leave time to get stuck in traffic, find a parking space (no more parking in the visitor spaces), and walk from the parking lot to the building. (Substitute fighting for space on public transportation if you are fortunate enough to live somewhere where that is an option.)
If you’re starting college, leave enough time to get to class and discover that there has been a room change—to the other side of campus. Assume that the room will be crowded and get there in time to get a seat in a part of the room you’re comfortable in.
Don’t spend your entire food budget on lunch or designer coffee. It’s great to eat with colleagues and to go out for a fun lunch every now and then. But buying expensive lunches and $4 billion lattes every day will leave you hungry/unable to pay rent/broke by the end of the month. Unless you are making a great deal more money than I think you are. In which case, we should be having an entirely different conversation about investing.
Same idea at college, only more so. Because now we’re talking about you spending my money, and I’m pretty sure I’ve already stocked up your food services account.
Stay in touch. You are not entirely on your own. We’re here for you. And we love you. And we love to hear all about your new adventures. So call, or text, or send a carrier pigeon if you can find one. Just don’t disappear.
Whether you are graduating from an institution of higher learning, high school, or pre-school, I wish the entire Class of 2013 all the best. You are a terrific group, and I can’t wait to see what’s next for you.