Ask Emma: Graduation Scaries

Emma knows how stressful it can be to not know where you’re going after graduation and has some tips on how to overcome what fears you have.



Emma is here to help with post-graduation fears.

SAYDEE PHOTHIVONGSA, Evergreen news editor

Editor’s Note: Even though Emma Ledbetter has graduated, The Daily Evergreen has decided to continue the Ask Emma segment with a new author in honor of our friend Emma and all the people she has helped.

Dear Emma, 

I am graduating on Saturday and I don’t really know how to feel. Part of me is ready to graduate and excited to start a new chapter in my life. On the other hand, I am so terrified of leaving. What if I fail? I still don’t have a solid job plan set up as I am still in the interview process. What if I end up with no job coming out of graduation? I feel like everything I have worked so hard for could all be for nothing. I feel so much pressure to succeed and it seems like everyone around me already has solid plans laid out in front of them. How do I cope with this huge change? 




Dear Soon-to-be-grad,

Thank you for reaching out and congratulations! I can only imagine the anxiety and stress you are going through right now as you try to prepare for and process this gigantic change that is about to happen. I feel lucky to have this situation delayed for myself for one more semester. 

It is completely understandable that you are having mixed feelings about leaving WSU and venturing out into the real world. The fact that you are not completely set up with plans for after graduation is probably adding even more stress than excitement. 

You probably don’t need me to tell you where you can look for jobs, but I’m going to anyway! Websites such as LinkedIn, Handshake and Indeed are great tools to search for available jobs that match what you are looking for. 

I especially like LinkedIn because it’s kind of like “professional social media” where you can connect and interact with past colleagues, potential employers and search for jobs all in one. If you haven’t yet, I would highly recommend creating an account to help you be seen by companies that are hiring!  

Before I go on, I just want to say that even if you end up not having a job opportunity the second you move out of Pullman, THAT IS OKAY! I feel like we put so much pressure on ourselves as grads to have everything figured out as soon as we graduate, but that is not always realistic. 

I am well aware of the monetary weight that can be placed on grads’ shoulders as they now have to support themselves, but try to remind yourself that it is okay to take a beat to recuperate and focus on finding a job that you will actually enjoy. 

It’s also worth mentioning that post-grad depression is a real thing that can be triggered by the big changes that come with graduation. Not everyone experiences this after college but it could be worthwhile to take some time to learn about signs and symptoms as well as how to cope. 

Lastly, BE PROUD OF YOURSELF! You have just completed a fundamental chapter in your life that is filled with growth and challenges. You deserve to celebrate this accomplishment without the weight of the future holding you down. 

It’s hard not to put pressure on ourselves or compare ourselves to others whom we feel are succeeding more than we are, but try to remember the excitement you feel for the new chapter you are about to start. 

You are about to embark on a whole new journey and while that is a little scary, it is certainly something to be excited about. 

Live it up for your last few days in Pullman and don’t forget that you DID THE DAMN THING! Congrats again and Go Cougs!