Photo by Fabian Rubio

What I Wish I Did Before Graduating

By Lauren Galvan

As I near the end of my college career, my eyes are finally open to the different options that the Long Beach State campus has to offer, and I have never felt such remorse. I look around and see the endless possibilities that are offered here, and I have done close to none of them. They range from rock climbing to tap dancing classes, and the list is ever-growing.

All of the free services and benefits that being a college student gets you were lost to me. I had no idea I was missing out on so much until I started to make a list of all the things I wish I had done in my college career.

It feels like time flew by so fast and I zoomed out of here as quickly as I could. Was it because I didn’t have time? Or did I just think I didn’t have time? I was in such a rush to graduate that I didn’t realize that I was missing out on the fun around me. There was so much potential for me and yet, I didn’t take advantage of the social aspect of college. I grew up playing sports, but I didn’t step foot on a field unless I was covering a game for a class.

With an open mind, I see all the things I could have participated in. If I would have known I would feel this regret, I would have joined a club or, who knows, tried out for the rugby team and gotten the wind knocked out of me. But, at least I would have tried.

Here I sit, with so many regrets and no time to fulfill my dreams of learning how to tap dance. Ok, it isn’t necessarily a dream of mine, but it would have been nice to learn something new. Something to help me get out of my little bubble and daily routine of school, work, sleep, repeat.

Now, with less than two weeks until I graduate, I feel dread and disbelief that I let all this time go to waste. These are my final days on campus, my final days being a Long Beach student, and I have nothing to show for it. I wrote for my school’s magazine and got a couple of awards for it, but I never strayed too far from my journalism major.

When it comes to classes I wish I had taken, there are at least a dozen that I regret not taking. However, one of the most interesting and relevant subjects that I wish I had gotten more into is the Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality studies program. As I’ve grown, I realize how important this topic is to me, and how relevant it is to the world around me. I could have even minored in the subject and yet, I chose to rush through college like it was a race. Against who? I have no idea.

What I do know is that I feel like I let others influence the way my college experience went. I could have taken the fun classes but instead, I did what I thought my family and my guidance counselors wanted, which was for me to take the classes I needed to graduate as soon as possible.

I hear everyone talk about how extraordinary their experiences were at LBSU and how their teammates are their families that will be in their lives forever. Then there are people who talk about the fun classes they took over the course of their four years and here I am with my most interesting class being the geology 101 class I had to take to graduate.

I'm happy to be graduating, of course, but that doesn’t mean I can’t feel remorse for the things I wish I did. I mourn my college career and can only hope that I make the best of the rest of my life.

Future students, I hope you learn from my mistakes. I hope you don’t listen to the people saying you have to blast through college with nothing but academic achievements. I hope you join clubs and attend socials and make lifelong friendships that don’t fade away after you graduate. I hope you don’t wish there was something you did before you graduated. I hope you have no regrets.



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