Today was Convocation. Which is an elaborate ceremony where everyone is conferred with the degrees they’ve spent five years earning, and are bestowed with gold medals and words of wisdom from esteemed guests. It’s a pretty great tradition that allows people to celebrate their academic qualifications – which is a unique journey for everybody and sees each person going through times which are turbulent, but times that are extraordinary as well.
But that’s just one aspect of the ceremony. The other thing that happens on days like this is a reunion of an entire batch of people, which is always fun for that batch.
We’re lucky enough to have had two batches come back to campus. This was because Convocation didn’t happen for one full year – so we got to see people who had graduated in 2017, and in 2018 on the same day.
So obviously lots of nostalgia happened. It was great to see everyone. It was also when I realized how familial University bonding actually is. The lack of privacy and the sheer amount of time you spend with each other means that for those 5 years, you’re pretty much siblings. And beyond those 5 years, you’re bonded by the commonality of a ridiculously unique experience.
I miss having these seniors on campus, but it was great talking to everyone and seeing where the last few months have taken them. Oddly enough, it was also an opportunity to self-reflect on where the last few months have taken me. Talking to everyone made me realize the effect ageing, and this University has had on me. My sleep cycle has shifted, a lot of enthusiasm has fallen. Rather, keeping my enthusiasm up is something that needs active effort these days. I need to now remind myself to go to class, to put in the effort class deserves.
It’s tougher, in a lot of ways.
I was also the recipient of words of wisdom from the seniors I met. And you don’t realize this when you enter, but your seniors are ridiculously important to the way your University experience pans out to be. I don’t think you realize this even after you leave.
Seeing people get their degrees made me understand how badly I want mine as well. I think I’m now hitting that phase where I’m still enjoying everyday, but I can see the finish line and see all the avenues the last five years have opened up for me.
Can’t wait to make the most of them.