An Open Letter to the Discouraged and Undecided

By Sarah Lalond

At this point in the semester, time feels like it’s running out. Life isn’t measured in days, but instead in the hours until the next essay, next test or next project is due.

In the middle of this, you’re asked to choose your schedule for next semester. You have to commit to what your life is going to be like for the next four months.

Maybe you’re struggling in classes and wondering if your major really is for you. Maybe you’re looking at dismal career prospects. Maybe you’re feeling daunted by other people in your classes who seem to be much more proficient than you are.

If you’re overwhelmed with the choices, it’s okay to take a moment to breathe. It’s okay to be uncertain.

Ten years ago when you pictured what your life would look like today, chances are it didn’t include NIU. Our future plans are constantly changing.

Life is rarely linear. How many of your family members are doing exactly what they thought they were going to do?

We’re still learning what we want to be when we “grow up.” I doubt we’ll ever really know. While it’s great to have goals and be excited about, life isn’t about checking off a goal from the to-do list. Life is about experiencing the highs and the lows.

Go forward and earn your degree. Once you walk across the graduation stage, no one can take that diploma away from you. That’s yours. With that degree, you have a whole new world of exciting opportunities awaiting exploration.

By the way, good luck with finals!