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25 Things to Do Before You Graduate Written by Sarah Ward

Excited to graduate college? Photo: Patrick Binder on Flickr You’re about to graduate college (!!!) and you’ve gotten over the graduation anxiety, but want to make sure you make the most of the rest of your college experience. Here’s a list of 25 things to do before you graduate college. 1. Earn a degree. First things first. You can’t graduate without it. Preferably in something you care about. 2. Get involved in an organization you believe in. Joining a club or organization will help you meet new people and give you a great sense of purpose and belonging. You never know, you may have an opportunity to protest on campus!

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3. Take classes you like. Make sure you’ve taken classes that are just for you and have nothing to do with your degree. Golf, bowling, swing dancing, organic chemistry… whatever floats your boat. 4. Study abroad. If you are dying to get out, why not study abroad? You’ll make new friends, challenge your perceptions of the world, expand your horizons, and may even learn a language. Your life will never be the same. 5. Get a letter of recommendation. Hopefully you have been building positive relationships with your college professors so you can get a glowing letter of recommendation. 6. Pull an all-nighter. It’s part of the package. 7. Network for future employment. Go to professional organizations. Meet people, shake hands, exchange business cards. Learn the art of small talk. 8. Exercise regularly. There’s no better way to lose the freshman 15 than exercising regularly, ideally 3-5 times a week for 30 minutes at a time. You’ll be happier and healthier for it. 9. Leave town for Spring Break. Make new college memories by getting out of town for a week over Spring Break. Sit on the beach, sip margaritas, and work on your summer tan. 10. Do an internship. It’s amazing what you can learn outside the classroom. Don’t be afraid to go after what it is you want to do, even if they haven’t publicized an internship opportunity. You may be pleasantly surprised. 11. Go to class. This will help with graduation. 12. Go see a concert. A friend of mine finished his finals one year, hopped in his car and drove 6 hours to watch U2 play, then drove back. Especially if your college is in close proximity to cool events, you’ve gotta check ‘em out! 13. Thank a professor. Take a few minutes and thank the professor that made the biggest impact on your life during college. Teachers teach to make a difference in the world and are rewarded when they see their impact. Handwritten notes

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give them something tangible to hold onto. 14. Update your resume. Chances are your resume has changed over the last four (or more) years. 15. Take advantage of the student discount. Work that student ID and get a discount off bus passes, groceries, movies, and even frozen yogurt. 16. Talk to the guy/gal you’ve been admiring from afar all semester. You may never see them again. Strike up a conversation and ask them out on Saturday night. What do you have to lose? 17. Create a LinkedIn profile and get connected. Like Career Coach Jennifer Armitstead says, stay in touch with your fellow students, professors, and visiting experts. When you recommend others, you may be surprised how happy people are to return the favor. 18. Read a book you want to, rather than one you have to. It’s always better that way. 19. Turn in an assignment early. Your stress level will go way down! 20. Attend a sports event on campus. Show your team spirit and cheer on your team! 21. Hone your elevator pitch. Before you venture out into the world, take some time to practice your elevator pitch in the mirror. 22. Take a road trip. If you’re tired of the same old routine, call up some friends, pack a bag, and then start driving. Check out some of the must-see places in the area. 23. Kick the procrastination habit. This might be a lifelong pursuit… 24. Learn to communicate effectively. Heavens knows you’ll get enough experience with your college roommates! Communication is something you will use for the rest of your life. 25. Establish a personal brand. Decide a few things you want to be known for professionally and make it part of your personal brand.

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25 Things to Do Before You Graduate