I have been out of school since April 2016. I graduated with an Honours in English. Perhaps, I should have majored in finance, nursing, or Bio-Med. I had the acumen and the knack to succeed in those majors. In high school, I decided to take a risk. To stray from the typical path of becoming a nurse. Or a doctor. Don't get me wrong, in high school, I tried to get accustomed to these various careers. I would try to dress as a lawyer. I would watch Med-School documentaries. None of it really resonated with me. I was thinking about journalism. I always wanted to do journalism. But, I never had the confidence to actually say that. It wasn't until the past year or so that I finally figured out what I really wanted to do.
I mean, my parents came to Canada - just so I can be a nurse? Don't get me wrong. But, I want to at least say that I tried. I didn't want to dread waking up. That being said, it may be a bit more hard for me right now than my contemporaries who studied Finance. And that's okay. I would like to think that I am forging my own path. Making mistakes and living off spontaneity.
Here are some key traits that my degree has brought me:
1. Writing for different audiences
Just because you can write an essay does not mean you can write an essay. What one professor may like, another may detest. Therefore, you have to be adaptable depending on the class and "prof" that you have. Also various citation styles (MLA, APA, Chicago Style etc.) may be used so you have to become familiar with all of them.
2. Managing multiple deadlines
As one of my former classmates stated, "it's as if the "profs" conspire together to make students suffer. " Months where you are bombarded with multiple essays, presentations and quizzes is the norm. Time management is key in order to ensure success with each task.
3. Critical Thinking
Referring to point 1, anything is contestable. It is all a matter of having supporting evidence in order to back up your argument. Reading a piece of text multiple times in order to gain insight is really relevant in problem solving. Creativity is also encouraged.
4. Being well versed in a variety of areas
I loved the interdisciplinary nature of my degree. Perhaps this is just the result of attending York University - but I am truly grateful nonetheless. I took French, Drama, a Forensics Science - like course and many more. I loved that I was able to meet people from all walks of life and learn from viewpoints different from my own.
5. Gaining a voice
I was very fearful to express my opinions due to the liberal nature of my school. However, in fourth year I realized that I am paying for tuition (only four years eh!) . We are all entitled to share an opinion and likewise have our own opinions challenged. I really had to be confident in who I was as a person in order to be true to my authentic self. I value authenticity and believe other individuals do so too. People want to see something that is different, not something that is recycled and rehashed. So why not?
That being said, it doesn't hurt that I am currently debt-free due to the multiple, scholarships and bursaries that I received...but that's another story for another day.