Graduation Day

I’m not really one for ceremonies.

However, sometimes in life we have to do things we don’t really want to do. So tonight, I’ll cross the stage at Sprague Field at Montclair State University and officially earn my masters degree.

I’ve been cleaning out my bedrooms at my parents’ houses in preparation for moving to Florida next week. Having been settled in each of these respective bedrooms since childhood, I’ve amassed an embarrassing amount of “stuff.” However, going through this “stuff” has afforded me a trip down memory lane.

I recently found my graduation cap from high school. Both the cap and the gown were white, and I remember the hunt for the perfect white dress to wear under my white robe. I have no idea where that dress is now — I donated it when I gained the “freshman 15” (okay, more like 45) and realized I could no longer fit into my high school clothes. 

I also remember the ceremony. It felt so huge, so important. I would be leaving Whippany to live elsewhere for the first time in my life. Central Pennsylvania felt so far away, but after a few breakdowns over the summer after graduation, I faced my fears and made my way to college. At the time, my major was education, and I was proud to start my journey toward becoming a teacher (a journey that I abandoned a year and a half later).

I also recently found my regalia from my undergraduate graduation. College graduation. Another huge event on an unseasonably warm December day in 2012. By the point I reached graduation, I was jaded. I was done. I couldn’t get out of Lock Haven fast enough. The ceremony flew by, as everyone said it would, and two days later I left Lock Haven for good. Though Lock Haven, and LHU, were my home for four and a half years (by senior year I was living there all year ’round), my last semester was so draining that I couldn’t wait to leave. After four and a half years, and two changes to my major, I graduated with my BA in English.

Yes, my life is an Avenue Q song.

What do you do with a BA in English?

What is my life going to be?

Four years of college and plenty of knowledge

have earned me this useless degree.

So, what DO you do with a BA in English?

Apply to grad school, apparently.

During my last semester of college, I realized that all along I should have been a communications major. So I started applying for communication graduate programs… and for Disney Internships.

Yep, my first attempt at a Disney Internship came right after I graduated from Lock Haven. 

I don’t talk about it much, because obviously it didn’t lead to good news at the time, but it’s okay. Everything happens for a reason.

So anyway, I applied for grad school. I got accepted into Montclair State University’s Public & Organizational Relations program and, in September of 2013, I started my master’s degree.

And here I am today, two and a half years, one Disney College Program, and a lot of stress later, graduating at 7 pm tonight with my masters. Another ceremony. Another big event. Another recognition. 

And a week from now, I’ll start my journey to Florida to begin my dream internship in guest relations at Walt Disney World. 

And yes, this post is a retrospective about my graduations. But I want to leave you all with one of my favorite Walt Disney quotes:

“Around here, however, we don’t look backwards for very long. We keep moving forward, opening up new doors and doing new things, because we’re curious…and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths.”

Congratulations to all of my fellow 2016 graduates. 

Now I have to go figure out what the heck to do with my hair for the ceremony tonight…


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