With each passing year of college, the pressure seemed to mount. First it was pick a major. Then it was do well and get good grades. Somewhere along the way we were supposed to pick up internships. And then senior year came. I was trying to soak up all the memories of my last four years.  I was trying to figure out my plans for the future. And while the list of “to-dos” seemed to be growing, my time left on campus seemed to be dwindling. Before I knew it, I was walking across the stage, packing up my car, saying goodbye to my friends, and left with no answer to the question… NOW WHAT?

I knew I had goals I wanted to pursue. I wanted to attend medical school. I knew I wasn’t a strong applicant just yet. I wanted to improve my resume. Searching for ways to do so I first began down the more traditional path. I figured I could get a job, work for a year, and then with more experience apply to medical school. The only problem was… I could not for the life of me find a job. So again I asked myself NOW WHAT? I took a breathe, reached out to some trusted mentors, and just took a breathe. I reminded myself of my goals, to attend medical school. I looked into what some other students were doing and I found a relatively new pathway. The Post-Baccalaureate pathway seemed perfect for me.

The post-bacc program is essentially a way for students to take extra class that serve two purposes. If you need to finish some prerequisites before applying to medical school or any other post graduate program, you have that option. You also have the opportunity to take new classes and used them to boost your undergraduate GPA. This is something that also has proven helpful to those trying to get into post graduate programs. So I did it. I made the decision that this was the next step for me. As I made this decision a whole new world opened up to me. I had the opportunity to volunteer in labs and gain research experience. I was exposed to a variety of new cultures and people. I grew my volunteer opportunity into a full time job. I did well in my classes and was transforming into a strong candidate for medical school. I don’t say this to brag or boast, I say this to say there is a way.

Not everyone will have their dream job, or even a job for that matter, coming out of college. You might have things left you want to accomplish. All of that is ok. The post-bacc pathway is now offering students wonderful opportunities as they continue to pursue their dreams. I hope after you read this and hear my story you find some sense of calm. The end of college is stressful as it is but should never seem like the end of the world. There are tons of options out there for you to pursue you just shouldn’t lose sight of your overall goals and keep working hard and pursuing your passions.