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The college student’s conflict between passion and prestige

A few hours ago, I was dancing joyously to the tunes of the likes of Dagrin and Iyanya (Nigerian Artists) in front of my mirror while my subconscious was reflecting on an issue that has been on the forefront of my thoughts for a while now. A while being this semester, the most important semester of my undergraduate career. I am a senior due for graduation in May and I am constantly been confronted with questions and doubts of the abyss of uncertainty that awaits every college student (I would think!) who has ever walked down the stage and partook of the traditional tassel movement and hat toss.

As an individual, there are a number of things that I am passionate about such as dancing especially to African beats and helping people with issues (this passion has not been tried and tested). I would imagine that as college students most of us are at some point confronted with doubts about what the future might hold.

These doubts could become such a stumbling block that some of us may begin to regard, the four walls of the University as a safe haven, a well-known path that is not as unfamiliar to what awaits us beyond those walls. I was confronted with these feelings when I visited my major advisor at the end of the fall 2012 semester and she informed that I was eligible to graduate this semester. I was flat out scared because graduating would mean that I had to begin to make plans beyond what classes would I like to take for the next three months. Graduating would mean that I would have to begin to make more solid plans that might involve me confronting the much dreaded standardized tests such as the LSAT.

Graduating would also mean that I had to leave the place that I have called second home for the past few years; this is saying a lot considering the fact that I am a commuter.

So here, I am about a month away from the walk, the rite of passage, the diploma collection and I begin to weigh my passion and my future goals. And just as I was getting down to the tunes of Kukere I thought to myself, I could become a professional dancer. This thought immediately elicited a chuckle out of me. But, why not? Why do I think it is funny for me to put aside my more prestigious plan to become an attorney to take up something as “comical” or un-prestigious as professional dancing? Choosing passion over prestige in this case would mean I would have to retrace my steps. It would mean that when someone asked what my major was and I told him or her that I was an English major I would have to stop employing the phrase, “but I want to go to law school as a sort of come back so that I don’t feel like a joke or a waste of space in academia.

Passion would mean that I would have to get to know who I am rather than following a default route. It would mean that I take charge of my own future. It would also mean that I get to travel the road less taken. Yet, among all these odds, passion promises fulfillment and a better chance at been happy and secure in who I am. Following my passion would mean that I would never work a day in my life because I would be in love with what I do and I would enjoy who I would become. So my fellow graduates, I hope that you would like I am give some serious thought to what you are passionate about and whatever plans that you have set for yourself post-graduation. And I hope that with that you would not end up sitting at a desk in the future full of regrets concerning the path that you have chosen to walk today.

And with this, I say Congratulations to you. We made it!


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