by Dani Myers
Hey, seniors (and even juniors)! I understand what’s probably going through your minds as you start yet another year of college. You’re tired, maybe a little burned out. The novelty and excitement of being a PR major ready to take on the professional world has lost its luster. But, today I’m here to tell you: You’ve got this! Don’t slow down yet! Push through until you’re in that cap and gown and eventually walk through the doors to your future employer.
Three reasons why you should avoid senioritis
- This is just the beginning
You’re probably at the stage now when you’re thinking, “I’m tired of juggling classes, projects, organizations I’m involved in, work, etc., etc. I’m just ready to get a job, go to work and earn a paycheck.” Yes, you have a lot to balance. But this is just the beginning! Don’t lose your momentum. One day the consequences of your decisions won’t only affect your success as a young professional—your decisions will impact the future and viability of the organization you’re working for and represent. Giving in to senioritis will make the transition into the professional world much harder.
- Take advantage of resources while you’ve got them
Being an upper-classman in college is demanding, yes. But it’s also a luxury (and many of you won’t realize this until college is over!). When else will you have professors, mentors, peers, and professional advisers at your disposal for advice and direction? You’re able to go to informational interviews purely to learn about a company; once you’re fully employed, informational interviews aren’t easy to come by. Most importantly, right now your time is your own to spend learning and growing professionally; after graduation much of your time belongs to your employer. Realize what you have now and can do now as a college student (and then do it)!
- The choices you make senior year will impact your success as a PR professional
Senior year is not the time to skip out on PRSSA involvement or other opportunities. PRSSA introduces students to so many real-world opportunities such as professional networking events. Potential employers are much more interested in learning what you have to offer the closer you are to graduation. Interpersonal interaction with PR professionals will help future employers put a name to a face once your resume comes across their desks. Making positive impressions in-person is much more valuable than a good resume alone.
Three ways to avoid senioritis ( I can’t provide the “why” without giving you the “how-to”!)
- Work SMARTER, not harder
The great thing about senior year of college is that there are a lot of fun things you won’t want to miss out on. Don’t let senioritis keep you from being an awesome student AND from taking part in senior year traditions! Instead of working for four hours in front of the TV, take your work to the library or a coffee shop and hammer it out in half the time. What’s important to focus on is not how long you work, but what you get accomplished during the time you’re working. Efficiency is a great way to achieve work-life balance!
- Set weekly goals (AND write them down)
For most of you, your goal is to graduate and get that degree so you can get a job. This is a great long-term goal to have. But don’t forget about those short-term goals that will help you reach your long-term goal. Oftentimes people make hefty goals and are not sure what to do in the interim to accomplish them. Writing down weekly goals (like, “make a new professional contact”) will keep you on track for reaching your larger goals.
- Don’t take yourself too seriously
If you mess up, don’t be too hard on yourself. As they say, if you fall off the horse you should get right back on. Your last years in college are too precious to think about what you could have or should have done. Make it a point to look forward, think about the career you want to have after graduation, and do what you need to do now to get yourself there. And, be sure to have some laughs along the way.