Crave The Day: You’ve Graduated…Now what?!

You’ve done it! You’ve accomplished the difficult task of becoming a college graduate, but now what? The parties are over. Your diploma is hopefully framed by now, and the final thank you cards are sent.

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C.S., the University of Arizona, Graduating Class of 2016.

But alas, here you are and that degree just hasn’t secured your dream job. Well…let’s not declare defeat just yet. In fact, let’s consider a counter plan of attack to boost your self-esteem. After all, you’ve just survived countless hours preparing for this stage of  life so better to regroup and prepare yourself for the next concert. 🙂

You may have noticed on my about page that I served in the United States Air Force. During that time, I was a Commandant, sort of like a school principal, of an Airman Leadership School.  We used the acronym DG often, and it means Distinguished Graduate. It recognizes the top 10% of the graduating class. But for some of our students, they pegged it as “Done Graduated” and expressed their intentions to fully seek that title too! Of course, my job meant “checking” any attitudes that might devalue the prestige of our distinguished graduates. I always tried to put a positive spin on these unique thoughts through enlightening our Air Force’s future leaders. And because I love tradition, I’m going to focus on the 3DGs today.


  1. Dedicate yourself to achieving the goal you set out to do. Life doesn’t have a course syllabus that tells you what to do. You have to dedicate yourself to the pursuit of career landing. You  must be willing to sacrifice some of those things that consume you and are not a valuable ingredient to your success.
  2. Discipline is important. You’ve already shown discipline by graduating.  So pat yourself on the back because you’ve done well! Now that you have graduated, don’t forget this important trait.  So take a hard look at yourself and actually write down areas you might need to enhance your discipline.
  3. Donate is another important factor in regards to time.  Donate YOUR time to achieve success! Study the job market. Create accounts in employment search engines like and You will also want to get LinkedIn; it’s recognized as the largest professional network. You can follow companies that might interest you through these websites. In most cases, you will have to donate a considerable amount of time researching the job market and adjusting your resumes for the various jobs you apply for. Landing a job requires donated time–period!

    University Of Maryland University College Europe, Graduating Class of 2016 (my oldest!)


  1. Goals are the end result of what you want to achieve.  Your goals will change from time to time, but what should not change is your investment in creating goals. Most importantly, be sure you set mini-goals to help you reach your ultimate goals.  Do write down your goals and place them in a location where you’re reminded–it’s a gentle nudge to finish. And don’t forget the mini-goals too! You will want a plan of action.
  2. Guides, also known as mentors, can provide you insight into your career choice. Think of professors, family members, or simply reach out to the industry you hope to be employed with. Most people are helpful in nature–specifically if you flatter them with your admiration– and chances are they’ll try to steer you in the right direction.  Don’t shy away from this step; it may seem difficult, but at the end of the day they can only say no. Finally, don’t discount a conversation you have at the local grocery store, coffee-house, or gym–this person might very well be your future guide. I have met so many wonderful people this way and you can too!
  3. Get Going! Yes, you heard me! GET GOING! If you don’t care about nabbing your next job then who will?


These are a few thoughts and certainly not the only avenue for pursuing a career. I hope you find them helpful. If you have something that has worked for you please share!

Oh…and what about all those DGsDone Graduated students? Well, I always said, “It doesn’t really matter what award you walk away with, the true DG will go out there and influence the lives of others.”  Now get out there and Do Good! 🙂

Hiker Crave the Day

About this series: During my career, mentoring and helping others reach their goals was a part of my responsibility. Upon my retirement, I began interacting with many people who felt their ambitions were not tangible–goals such as earning a college degree and landing a dream job. Additionally, I was surprised at the notion of failure that prevented these individuals from even trying and so this series is dedicated to travelers who may lack a travel guide. I hope my experiences will encourage you to never give up on yourself. If you’re looking for a virtual hiking companion– a chit chat on craving the day–then join me. Let’s talk your ideas of success. I’ll be sharing my experiences with you, and I invite you to join in with your own tips for success. Happy, safe traveling, and remember…the joy truly is in the journey!

Graduate images, my daughter


10 thoughts on “Crave The Day: You’ve Graduated…Now what?!

  1. It is hard for kids who graduate these days because they don’t walk into a job of the major and usually end up back home again instead of taking the reins of their life. We as adults know that but the student doesn’t. This is all they know. We know it SHOULD be better and we want it to be better for them but there isn’t much we can do unless we have lots of money and have great contacts to introduce them to. My kids are past that now – they made their choices and are now taking care of their own families. My oldest grandchild just graduated from HS and is going into the Marines in 30 days. It put me into a state of useless panic, because there was nothing I could do about it. He’s hyped up and has been training for a year as he went through the last year. He morphed from a pudgy kid to an absolute knockout. I know he knows nothing about what he is really heading into because the recruiters don’t educate them on war and our part in them. But i also think – there is nothing out there for him. My daughter can’t afford to send him to college – at least nothing more than a local jr college. She has moved a lot so he really doesn’t have roots in the town they live in. I remember at his age how much I wanted to go out in the world and make my way when my sisters never left and tried things to see what they might be good at. Yes, it is harder than ever for anyone to make a decent living no matter who you are if you are looking for a job. I’m glad I’m not that age now – except I didn’t have any aches and pains and wrinkles on my face back then. But i also didn’t have an wisdom, either.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi thank you for responding to my blog. Yes I agree with you the job market is tough out there. I think first and foremost preparation is key and what I find is some people don’t know how to go about pursuing their ambitions, or they simply are reluctant to for fear of failure. Of course this is not everyone by any means.

      You mentioned your grandson will join the Marines and of course I think it’s wonderful to serve our country! The military has many opportunities, but once someone has served the transition to civilian life can be a surprise. Some jobs in the military will transfer better than others, and each service does vary on its mission. I think these are things people do not realize, specifically if they do not have family or friends in the military. Like you said, the recruiters will not be able to tell your grandson everything–too many complexities exist to be honest. So if he has opportunities to take classes for example…he should take these steps to prepare himself for life after the Marines. I wish him the best of luck.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Thank you. It scares me like it scares other mothers and grandmothers. We want our children to be safe. Kids today know the job market is tough. I have a nephew with one more year of HS. He doesn’t have a clue about anything and has basically been a lazy kid with no ambition. His mom says “He’ll have to figure it out for himself” He can’t do that. Is she expecting something will change and he’ll figure it out? I expect his girlfriend will get pregnant before that happens and then he’ll just wing it. So much is missing from schools today to prepare kids for school they can’t afford anyway.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Believe me I do understand. My daughter hopes to join the Air Force. She is hoping to get into the Air Force Academy through their gymnastics program. At first when she shared she wanted to join the service I replied, “You don’t have to do that. Your dad and I have already served for you.” We all want our children safe. I want every child to have the access to a safe world, and so with this hope it means some will find themselves in unsafe conditions. I know what you mean; we just do not want that person to be our family members.
        I’ve thought about why my daughter would want to join. Honestly my husband and I invited her into our world–people may not realize that with the service. When I ran a school I would sometimes bring my daughter to work so she could play with another instructor’s child. We had a recreational room. We even charged them to start stripping the ugly wallpaper in there.  It wasn’t all child labor though, sometimes she would attend ceremonies and so on. She told me when I retired that I won’t be that cool mom anymore. I chuckle at this thought really…I did not realize I was ever a cool mom. Anyways during my retirement I had the flag given to my daughter. I think all these little experiences have left an impression on her. Between my son and my daughter she is definitely the patriot.
        I attached a piece for you—if you would like to read. It shares my thoughts on Iraq. Maybe it will bring you a little peace to what your grandson wants to do. Best to you!

        Liked by 1 person

    1. I know it really is today. The best area, if possible for young adults, is to try and find an internship if possible. My brother told me he was denied by Dell 10 years ago, and it became his obsession to eventually land a job with the company. Well he did recently. His advise–keep trying, never give up. I think that rings true in many areas. 🙂


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