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Times of Tension and Anxiety: Graduation Edition

March 28, 2023

Many students experience tension and anxiety around graduation because they are about to embark on a new life chapter.

 The following are some common sources of stress that can be experienced during this time:

  • Finding work or settling for a future career can be challenging
  • Financing post-graduation expenses
  • Getting ready for standardized tests, like the LSAT and MCAT, among others
  • Keeping up with one's connections to one's family and friends
  • Leaving behind one's former residence

It is only natural for you to feel stressed and anxious about graduating if you haven't skipped a grade and have completed all 18 years of school without interruption. After all, school, academics, and following a strict schedule are all you've ever known. I have the same perception; I am extremely anxious about graduating because everyone else around me has their lives together but not me. If you're feeling the same way, don't worry; I know it's difficult, but trust me, I'm trying too. It's difficult to live without worrying about your goals for the future, what lies ahead, or what lies in the store. But the more you realize, some people can support and assist you at this difficult time. Everyone has a different life timeline, so just because your time and life aren't aligning with everyone else's and you don't know what you want doesn't mean it never will. It takes time for everyone to figure out what they want to do. I, for one, find it difficult to accept that it is okay not to know what I want to do. I still have the rest of my life ahead of me.

Taking care of yourself with these feelings of stress is important

Some examples of self-care actions include engaging in regular physical activity, maintaining a healthy diet, and getting enough sleep. Connecting with supportive people like family, friends, and even strangers online or in person and consulting a therapist or counsellor when necessary can assist someone going through a difficult time.

Finding a job after graduation can be challenging and daunting 

It's vital to remember this is a common experience many individuals share. There are actions you can take to reduce stress and improve your chances of locating a position that is a good fit for you. Make a list of your qualifications and accomplishments, and think about how they can assist you in your job search. It might be beneficial to network with people in your circle of friends, family, and industry. Apply for jobs online, go to career fairs, and personalize your cover letter and CV for each one. Do not forget to look for yourself and, if necessary, ask friends and family for help. You will locate the ideal position with persistence and an optimistic outlook.

Honestly, I still feel apprehensive, but setting up an appointment with the job centre, talking to friends about my worries, and hearing other stories about their experiences helped me feel less alone. I've provided some useful resources below that you should visit. Even though I'm still apprehensive, I'm less anxious and more eager to start my new journey and adventure after becoming more aware of my emotions, taking time for myself, and using various tools!

Resources to help:

Students can access various career development resources through the Student Life Portal, including academic or co-op support, job posting boards, individual career counselling sessions, and employer recruitment and networking events.

Career Centre Google Classroom can help you prepare for your career by accessing videos, tip sheets, and other resources. To access the Career Centre Google Classroom, log in as a student using your student email account.

Book an Appointment with the Career Centre!

Log in with your Ontario tech email to get started!

  • Access Career Counselling

Schedule a meeting with a career counsellor to discuss your career-related questions or concerns and for assistance with the professional development process.

Call 905.721.8668, extension 3392, or send an email to to schedule a meeting with a career counsellor

  • Access Employment Advising:

Prepare for your job search by scheduling an appointment with an employment counsellor to obtain individualized advice on your resume, cover letter, interviewing skills, and other areas of concern.

You are not alone: Relatable posts

Important takeaway!

It is natural to feel overburdened with thoughts about the future after graduating from a post-secondary educational institution because this is a significant accomplishment. However, you must remember that this is not the journey's end and that many other opportunities await your participation. Inhale deeply and toast the success you've earned through your perseverance. Try to get in touch with supportive people, such as friends, family, and others, who can offer encouragement and direction. It's okay if it takes some time to find the job of your dreams; just keep looking. Trust that everything will work out in time, and be open to new challenges and opportunities. During this time of high excitement, it is important to remember that you must prioritize your needs and prioritize self-care to maintain your motivation and energy levels.

Good Luck!