The Bitter Pills Every Fresh Engineering Graduate Should Swallow

The life of an engineer begins after graduation.


Fresh engineering graduate… now what?

By the time you see yourself seated in a crowd full of familiar faces clad in their graduation gowns, you realize that something bigger is about to unfold in your life. It’s graduation day – a culmination of your failures and successes in engineering college. It’s a stage of mixed emotions that at last, you’re there to take a grip of your diploma. You have accomplished a major milestone that will serve as your benchmark in achieving the dream to become an engineer. And you’re somehow inclined to listen to the commencement speaker that will tell you inspirational and motivational quotations on what and how life is like after college.

Engineering Graduate, Now What? (Source: Pinterest)

But you cannot expect the guest entitled to speak among your fellow graduates to share the harsh realities that come along right after college. Such are the bitter pills that graduating engineering students need to swallow:

Your life won’t always go according to plan.

Contrary to what idealists believe, there will be obstacles that will turn your life a hundred and eighty degrees at moments where you least expect them to happen. It pays to have goals and plans of action, but what the commencement speaker won’t say is that you won’t get there on ways you have planned them. Life will give you diversions that will bring you experiences and adventures that never crossed your mind. You thought all the while you’ve got the answers, until life changes the questions.

Engineering Graduate, Now What? (Source: State)

You’re bound to fight internal monsters that are difficult to deal with.

Between 20s and early 30s is the age of searching one’s self. You are out in the wild on your own; while doing this, you will encounter monsters within that will question every bit of your existence. Such is called the quarter-life crisis. You will face intrapersonal conflicts that will not take an overnight resolve. They will linger in your heart and mind, and you will only gain control over them when you undergo the stages.

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Engineering Graduate, Now What? (Source: Giphy)

Your success need not to be measured by money and power.

An engineer’s success is usually measured by one’s influence in a company and how much he’s gaining in a whole day’s work. While success has personal parameters, it doesn’t always have to be about money and power. It could be the physical accomplishments that the engineer has built, worked on, or developed. The true value of an engineer is when he has shared his knowledge and skills in making the world a much better place, and at any scale.

Engineering Graduate, Now What? (Source: Shutterstock)

Your GPA won’t matter as you originally thought it would.

Most engineering students work their asses off in college to get the best grades. I don’t want to discourage those who are fighting for the highest GPA on their way to graduation – after all, grades measure performance, but not necessarily intelligence – but you will realize soon enough that the impressive GPA you have perspired for won’t be that big of a leverage. It will be of value, but not as high as you think it would be.

Engineering Graduate, Now What? (Source: Donovan Christian)

Your career path as an engineer is not at all exclusive in engineering.

There is no standard about which career path you are going to take. If you decided to pursue business or law, you are still an engineer anyway. That cannot be removed from you. Do not close your doors to outside opportunities thinking that they may ruin your engineering career. It is okay to step out of the comforts of engineering.

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Engineering Graduate, Now What? (Source: Hulu)

Your colleagues will have lives of their own.

If you’re one who has attachment issues, take this truth pill that you are leading individual lives apart from your college buddies. It won’t be the same anymore once you graduated because their priorities change. Yours should too. You may be one of the priorities but no longer at the top –regardless, still a priority.

Engineering Graduate, Now What? (Source: Pinterest)

You will spend the rest of your life wondering how to spend it.

Live life as it happens. It is constantly changing and evolving. You’ll never know exactly what you want until you find it. In your journey after graduation, you will have episodes that will make you pause and think about what you really want to do. Once the idea has dawned upon you, you will find yourself searching for the next thing that will inspire, motivate and fulfill you.

Engineering Graduate, Now What? (Source: The Late Show With Stephen Colbert)

Engr Eva Allanigue
Chemical Engineering graduate with a passion in writing weird stuff at GineersNow. Official globe-trotter with luxury luggage, bags & accessories. Follow me on Linkedin

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The Bitter Pills Every Fresh Engineering Graduate Should Swallow

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