Editor’s Note: Hello! It’s Jacob Ferguson, the Marketing and Social Media Intern for the NIU College of Business. I am happy to declare that the end is near and it is bittersweet. As a senior with graduation and the rest of my life approaching I thought to myself about what advice I might have for my future self. With all the stress and excitement associated with this milestone here is what I came up with. If you would like to learn more about me please feel free to connect with me on LinkedIn or follow me on Twitter.
So you’ve graduated from Northern Illinois University with a Bachelor of Science in Operations Management & Information Systems and completed your year of service as a City Year Chicago Corps Member, now what’s next? I cannot answer that question for you, but I know what I can do. I can and will provide you with a handful of tips and advice not only to help you succeed, but also to help you stay true to yourself.
- Family and friends come first. When you are down and feel like you have nowhere left to turn look to the people that you have surrounded yourself with because they are there for a reason.
- Follow your heart. If there is anything I have learned it is that if you dislike something enough the money will never be worth it.
- Achieve financial freedom. Having the ability to walk away from any situation without having to think about the financial implications is a power few have, but many want.
- Find time to disconnect. You don’t always have to be plugged to be social.
- Just because an opportunity has presented itself does not necessarily mean that it is worth it. Realize that you can’t do everything.
- Get and stay involved. Find an organization that fits you and that will help you develop both personally and professionally.
- Focus on your health because you sure didn’t in college. A little bit will go a long away here so start eating better and hitting the gym.
- Find a way to earn passive income. If you could receive income on a regular basis with little effort, why wouldn’t you?
- Greet the janitor with the same respect you greet the CEO. You never know how small gestures like this will pay off and if they don’t at least you will feel a lot better about yourself as a result.
- Remember to stay in touch. Send an email or give a call to those from your past. You don’t have to talk everyday with someone to have a good relationship.
- Take risks and fail fast. You are at a point in your life where you are young enough to bounce back.
- As important as you think it is to have the newest phone or the nicest car there are more important things in life that can’t be held in your hand or driven.
- Be grateful and appreciate what you have because it can be taken from you at any moment.
I said it once and I will say it again, make the most out of these next couple years because you will never be as young as you are right now. Strive for excellence and don’t forget where you came from. There will be times when life knocks you down, just remember to get back up.