This is Vassar: The newsletter for Vassar College Alumnae/i and Families

Photo credit: Craig Burdett

Post-Grad Plans Loom Large for Molly Finkelstein ’08

Worrying about my future is very time consuming. The possibilities seem endless and, in many respects, I guess they are. I don’t have any real obligations post-grad except for paying off my Vassar loans, which, for the time being, I am mentally repressing. I’m not tied to any particular locations—I pick a new country to live in every week and, for a while, I was trying to decide between Portland, Park Slope, or Prague. I’m also fairly open in terms of occupation, at least hypothetically.

I’ve been trying not to get overly excited about any specific life plan in case it doesn’t work out. In this vein, I have developed an ever-expanding collection of hypothetical post-Vassar plans. They come in several categories. First is the Very Specific Plan. These plans include studying ancient history at a graduate school in the Netherlands (no Greek and Latin competence necessary, unlike their American counterparts), working at a teen magazine in Australia, and teaching English in rural France.

Then there are the Incredibly Vague, Generally Unlikely Plans, mainly involving places I’d consider living. These generally don’t consist of much more than “Move to Singapore.” I also have Ultimate Back-Up Plans, in case all else fails. These are primarily based off the singular goal of not living in New Jersey anymore. These include working for my cousin doing “something in English” in Beijing or getting a cheap apartment somewhere in Philly.

I also have Plans Based Off Advice From English Professors, which singularly includes taking a year off to “do whatever—work at a bakery or something” and then applying to M.F.A. programs.

Then, I’ve got what I consider my more realistic plans (though God knows how realistic they actually are), which are pretty much the typical Vassar senior plans: move to Brooklyn and try to get a job in publishing or at a museum or doing something sort of interesting. According to my calculations (36,000 alumnae/i, average of 25 years of occupational experience), you have a combined 900,000 years of job experience, so any wisdom you could impart to the terrified seniors of the class of ’08 would be greatly appreciated.

February 2008


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