Behind the Blogger: Lessons Learned from Graduate School

Happy Monday, friends! Hope you had a good weekend. After some very busy weeks (and weekends), I finally had zero plans and made the most of it by catching up on all of the Christmas movies! Anyone else love the Holiday Calendar? Another HUGE piece of news is that I have finally completed my master’s program and will graduate this coming weekend! While it was definitely challenging at times, I’m so thrilled to be finished and am extremely proud of myself, too. I shared my thoughts on the pros and cons of graduate school in this post, but figured I’d share lessons learned from graduate school as part of my ‘Behind the Blogger’ series – which seemed to be a big hit over the past few months! Let’s dive in.

It’s Not About What You Know, but Who You Know

This is a saying that my friend absolutely loves – and over the years I’ve come to realize just how true it is. One of the most important things I learned in graduate school is just how important relationships are – both personally and professionally. Not only did I meet some amazing people who will always be my friends, but I made excellent professional connections, as well. In fact, the job that I’ve had for the past two years is because of a connection established in one of my graduate courses my first semester. How cool is that?! Whether it’s a teacher or guest lecturer, these are all people who are great resources.

You Learn More About Who You Are

One of the greatest things about graduate school is that you’re exposed to so many different things – people, courses, topics, careers, challenges… you name it. Having all of this exposure really allows you to hone in on who you are and what you like. For example, one of the classes that I took this semester was all about entrepreneurship. While I’ve mentioned before that I’ve always wanted to own my own business, this course completely confirmed that for me, and taught me so much about launching my own business, and how I will want to lead that business!

You Learn to Embrace Others and Their Different Perspectives

From middle school all the way up until I graduated college, I was used to interacting with the same people and the same types of people. On my first day at Loyola University Chicago for student orientation, I knew that was no more. I feel so fortunate that my program and school caters to all sorts of people from different walks of life and countries. I have made friends who are from Colombia, India, Somalia and so many other places! This allowed me to learn about the different life experiences that people have and the various perspectives people have on certain issues. I think embracing that diversity is so important, and allows you to look at the world from a different lens.

So, there you have it – my lessons learned from graduate school!

Photos by Belen Aquino

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