Staying Confident

So, I graduated from college during a pandemic. The last two months of school were one of the hardest and shocking obstacles I had to overcome during my entire college career. I was devastated by learning that I wouldn’t get to experience any senior events. I was devastated that I wouldn’t get to see my best friends for G-d knows how long. On top of all of these realizations, I now had to get used to virtual learning for my last two months of school. Not only did this completely change my capstone course, but I also felt like I couldn’t find the motivation to learn more. Once my classes switched to online I felt as though college was already over. I was so upset and bothered by all of the unknowns that I found it extremely hard to stay focused on my courses. 

It was hard not having anywhere to go to do my work. It was hard not having in-person classes. It was hard learning online when professors didn’t even know how to teach their courses online. I always found getting up and having a place to go would motivate me more to do my work. So once we became virtual, I struggled to get my work done. This was a whole new way of learning for me.

You see, for my capstone class, I was supposed to be a part of a class documentary. One that we produced, wrote and edited ourselves. But once we switched to online, the documentary was no longer an option. I missed out on learning the ins and outs of documentary reporting. Although the class transitioned into writing, editing, and producing a podcast, I still felt like I lost out on a huge opportunity. 

Over time, I learned to accept that this was the end of my college career and there was nothing I could do to change that. Once I accepted that I made the best out of it. In any obstacle that is thrown your way during college, the most important thing to realize is that things happen and you have to just keep moving forward. I finished my courses with all A’s and graduated from college during a pandemic. The most unforgettable year. The hardest year. But it has also been a year of self-reflection and improvement. 

I am now on the job hunt. I can tell you one thing that I know for sure. Job searching during a pandemic is not easy. I have come across many emails saying, “Thank you for your interest but we are not hiring at the moment.” As the months go on though, jobs have opened up and the search has definitely picked up. The most important a person can do for themselves while searching for a job or internship is to network. Networking has always been important but it is one of the most important aspects of finding a job right now. If you can build your network and get your name to the recruiters before you apply then you are more than likely to set yourself up to succeed. I don’t want to give too much advice on the interviewing process because I have just begun interviewing, but I will tell you that you must stay confident during these times. There have been moments where I have gotten a bit discouraged, but I reminded myself that there are so many people struggling to find jobs right now and that it is not just me. If you realize that you have so much to offer and don’t give up, eventually the right position will come along and you will be happy that you worked this hard. Stay confident. Stay confident. Stay confident. 

By Hannah Sternberg

Hannah is a graduate from James Madison University where she majored in the School of Media Arts and Design with a concentration of Broadcast Journalism. She worked for her school’s weekly newscast called Breeze TV as a reporter. Her dream is to become a reporter but she also enjoys the entertainment production industry. One of her favorite things to do to relieve stress is dancing. 

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