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Life After College: 4 Unconventional Options



Life After College: 4 Unconventional Options

Offbeat options to explore after college (instead of getting a job)

College is essentially a chaotic foreground that conservatively nips the curtain that draped the big bad world from our high school supercilious selves. However, the ladder that progresses into the succeeding stages of life is largely undefined and sometimes, plain void. As fresh graduates, it is quite often that we find ourselves amidst an existential paradox, questioning life in itself. And while many hone their place into hierarchal society without much vigour, it is nevertheless an uneven metamorphosis from one environment to another. Between the scrambling for a lucrative internship and the confusion of misplaced hours in canteens, the lines between options and necessities begin to blur.

Society has maniacally fed to us the well-defined chart of progression, without much compliance for individuality. We do not mean that finding a job and securing financial independence is essentially wrong, instead, what is harmful is the acceptance of a preconceived notion. More so, we are here to snap you out of the paranoia that’s consuming your post-graduation state of mind. Not everyone has to graduate with an appointment letter in the hand. Here are some cool, unconventional options to explore after college.

1. Exchange cultures and skills across the globe

With far stretched hands of social media and the magic wand that is the internet, travelling around the globe for free has now become a blessed reality. Volunteering at hostels and local programs abroad can let you stay for free, quite often with free meals. Not only is this great for building strong interpersonal skills, it is also your golden ticket to Willy Wonka’s Chocolate factory, except the candy in this situation are new experiences and lessons that would never occur in a corporate setup.

A few websites such as worldpackers, workaway and helpx  connect you to local hosts and hostels across the globe–all you have to do is apply for a position and pay a small fee to confirm your participation. The duration of most stays extends from a minimum of a week to a year during which volunteers can develop enough cultural knowledge and linguistic proficiency, while also contributes towards the ecology and the locals of the host country. A number of listings on international volunteering sites request for English tutors for the locals in exchange for food, accommodation and free laundry.

2. Take an interest in sustainability

Given that the primary source of livelihood is food, it is concerning that those who are responsible for bringing food onto our tables are haunted by the lack of fundamental basics like water. With every farmer suicide, the need for participation from the coming generations to work upon a solution is becoming exceptionally clear. Empowering local farmers through ingenious ideas and practical approaches can dynamically alter situations, but with heavy handed work. Not only that but for fresh graduates, there is no better application of theoretical concepts than in an environment that would largely benefit from encouragement and empowerment in any way possible.

Orientation with certain NGOs like givefoundationonline is a good place to begin for initiation into such a cause. More so, a number of NGOs require active participation from volunteers for teaching basic concepts of English and computers to local children and women.

3. Dip your toes in entrepreneurship

However small, nothing compares to the knowledge, skills and the experience that comes from running a business. Not every business needs a thunderous capital funding or exposure. In fact, for graduates, a hands-on experience in first grade supply and demand can ease the path into a company setup, either as an employee or employer. In 2014 the number of student founded start-ups went up to 3% which is still staggeringly low for a country with a youth population of 41.5%.

Starting at something small with minimum investment can provide to be a good platform for gauging market trends and understanding corporate setups better. More so, engaging in something that requires full-time participation unlike a nine to five will most certainly make for a wider exploration of true interests. Truth be told, it is hardly ever wrong to go after a dream.

4. Acquire new and unconventional skills

Know how doesn’t always have to be technical or drawn on spreadsheets. If deep sea diving has always been a passion then there is no reason why you shouldn’t go beyond checking it off the good old bucket list. Learning is invariably associated with a classroom and in order to offend that belief, you need to get out there and learn anything that catches your fancy. There are a million things in this universe and hardly a few hundred cross our lives. Languages, cultures, food and even the merry spirits have something in them to open up your insight and amaze you.

While the world continues to look at skill sets as additional seasoning on resumes, you can be on your way to scale a mountain. It is actually possible to be more than one thing at the same time. The universe cannot stop you if you want to be a philosopher, a gardener, a musician, a Slytherin and a Japanese translator all at once–you can begin right here.

Plan Ahead

The plunge from 300-year-old campus to a 30-storey glass building is understatedly high. With another phase of life coming to an end, the need to progress into the next, dims the lights on every unfulfilled dream until it remains just as that. Even though it is yet to be completely absorbed into the system as acceptable practice, sabbaticals after graduation are not completely unheard of and neither are they looked down upon.

Contrastingly, most Ivy League schools, including Harvard emphasise upon the need for a gap year, between high school and college. Most importantly, taking time off to explore possibilities outside of the academic and corporate realms is looked at as major attributor of a balanced and wider world view. Since a majority of our decisions in this sub-continent have to be given the green signal by our society-fearing parents, a researched plan of action before proposing such an idea would at the best, salvage the situation than escalate it. More so, we advise cautionary helmets in case saucers, pans and brooms begin to fly around.

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