A few things I’ve learned

Hey William & Mary world, it’s been a while! Let me catch you up on a few things. In May I graduated from W&M—which was an unprecedented mix of exciting, sad and terrifying—and I’m now writing to you as an alum from our nation’s capital, where I work as an editorial assistant for a small publishing company. Being a “real person” has been quite an interesting experience. Here’s a few things I’ve learned so far…

  1. Who needs Google when you have parents?

I don’t know about you, but when it comes to W-2s, taxes and anything that has to do with baking raw chicken, I call my mom. She’s basically the ultimate how-to guide to all of those pesky new tasks you have to do as an adult. Without her I’d probably be eating frozen meals and crying over my tax forms out of sheer frustration.

  1. Pretty much everyone is faking it.

One of the editors was giving an update at our February staff meeting and I noticed his full page of notes shaking in his hand. He was nervous. This isn’t his first time giving a presentation (honestly, it’s probably his 1,000th time) but he was still nervous about talking in front of everyone. Just because someone has a lot of experience, doesn’t mean they’re any more comfortable then us new kids on the block. That brings me to number three.

  1. There is no such thing as a “real person” (hence the quotation marks)

No matter how old my coworkers are, they all lament over the same things I do. “Ugh, I have to clean my apartment this weekend.” “Why did I make plans so early?” With tax day coming up, we’re all complaining about how no one really understands how it all works, and those above me are sharing their war stories.

  1. It’s okay to still have Tribe Pride

The other day I met a new coworker of mine who usually works remotely. He asked where I went to college and in no time at all I was gushing about how much I enjoyed my time at William & Mary. I told him about the fun times I had but also about how much I enjoyed discussing politics and social issues in AND out of the class. To my surprise, my over-sharing was met with an enthusiastic “tell me more” rather than an apathetic “cool.” I realized that talking about your positive experiences in college isn’t a bad thing. (Although, in the interest of full disclosure, it’s probably not great if it’s your sole topic of discussion.)

  1. You may be young, but your opinions are still valid.

In my office we talk about politics…a lot. At first I was a bit weary to discuss my views. Most everyone in my office is at least 5 years my senior, and I didn’t want to seem like an overeager millennial. One day we were discussing reproductive rights for women and I had to chime in. My opinion wasn’t met with the eye rolls millennials usually get when discussing politics, but questions that sparked a particularly interesting discussion in the office. Ever since we’ve been talking about #45 and discussing politics pretty much every day (which is great for me, because I don’t have a government class to discuss politics in anymore). (Thought you were going to get through this post without hearing about politics? Sorry guys, I couldn’t help myself.)

I’ll try to post more as I get better at this whole “adulting” thing and, hopefully, provide helpful tidbits about the non-collegiate world. Until next time!

Categories: Alumni Blogs, Careers

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