I’m a graduate!

Posted on June 10, 2016 under Life

Technically my degree was granted on May 26, according to online records, but it somehow didn’t feel official until I crossed the stage on Tuesday. I can now officially say that after four years of hard work, I am the proud owner of a BA in Cultural Studies from one of Canada’s top universities. (Normally I’m really not one to brag about my school, but I guess this is the right occasion to say, hey, I did something cool.)

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Somehow this is not exciting as actually receiving a piece of paper.

My uncle works as the editor of my university’s official newspaper, and he was on the job photographing the convocation ceremonies all week. This means that I have some really nice, high quality photos that he took! All in a day’s work, right? Anyway, here is a small picture dump:

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I knew I was going to regret wearing these shoes and yet I wore them anyway. I have a degree and yet apparently no common sense! By the end of the morning when I had to return my robe and hood to the bookstore I was practically hobbling along. Shoes are from Forever 21 last year and I love them dearly for their borderline ugliness. Not so much for the comfort factor.

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When I decided to do my hair like this I wasn’t expecting it to work so well with the mortarboard! I wore my hair like this to work the other day and got so many compliments and questions (mainly “Is that your real hair?”), but it’s actually really easy to do. I just did a deep part and dutch braided each side all the way around the back, braided the remainder of my hair down to the end, and pinned it to the back of my head. Simple if you can braid decently, and great for short hair.

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The whole ceremony was filmed and my dad made a little edit of it with the best parts. (You know, the 15 seconds total out of 2 hours that I’m visible.) This was my favourite part! (I was waving at my mom and uncle, who were sitting right next to the camera.)

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I refused to wear the mortarboard in most of my posed photos because it’s ugly and it hid my hair. But these photos make me look more like a graduate, I suppose.

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As for my actual dress, I didn’t manage to get a single decent photo of it, but here it is peeking out from under my robe. I knew when I began to search for a graduation dress that I wanted something cobalt – not only because it’s my favourite colour of all time but because my high school graduation dress and prom dress were both that colour. I finally found this one from Lulus and was very happy with it!

My dad’s side is very formally educated (lots of law degrees and a PhD), but on my mom’s side I’m the first of my generation to get a degree. Out of my maternal blood relatives, I’m only the second ever – one of my uncles has a BA, and that’s it. So this is a pretty big deal, and I was so lucky to have one of my uncles attend to the ceremony (with the other there to take pictures). Most of my mom’s side also came out for a lovely dinner to celebrate. (And so did my former roommate, who might be reading this and who is amazing!) I truly feel so lucky to have had such supportive family and friends throughout my degree – in this last year especially I don’t know what I would have done without my parents, grandparents, uncles, and friends – especially my roommate, who was such great company over the course of a year that was intense and stressful, for reasons academic and personal.

As I’ve noted here before, I absolutely love school and fully intend to continue on with it. I did mentioned awhile back that I’ve opted to defer grad school for a year mainly for financial reasons. I’m a bit sad about it as I genuinely love school and was so excited to go back to Scotland, but I’m going to enjoy having a year to focus on other things – I haven’t had more than a few months off since 1998, and I want to make the most of it.

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