Campus / News / May 25, 2016

Seniors trek near and far after graduation

A hall in Seymour Union displays a map presenting where graduating seniors are heading off to following graduation. Assistant Dean and Director of Bastian Family Career Center Terrie Saline says that the office is still collecting data but currently the map shows 10 countries and 26 states represented.

Graduating can be a large step into adulthood and autonomy. Twin brothers and seniors Joshua Kemp and Nathan Kemp will soon become familiar with this, as they separate for the first time. The brothers have been roommates for every academic year and will be living on their own soon.

Nathan Kemp, an Environmental Studies and Biology double major, will be returning next fall as a Lab Coordinator for the Biology Department at Knox. This job entails aiding the Biology professor, grading papers and setting up labs. He said that this is only for a brief time and will eventually leave Knox after two years. Nathan Kemp is one of 23 students who are pursuing post-baccs at Knox next year.

“This is a transition step since the field that I want to go into requires years of experience,” Nathan Kemp said.

The Career Center’s map in Seymour Union also has close-ups of places where students are going. Many students are staying in Illinois, shown on this part of the map. (Dan Perez/TKS)

The Career Center’s map in Seymour Union also has close-ups of places where students are going. Many students are staying in Illinois, shown on this part of the map. (Dan Perez/TKS)

Joshua Kemp, an Environmental Studies and Political Science double major, will work for the global restoration landscape company, Cardno, after graduation. He will work as a prairie and wetlands restorer, something he’s done for six years.

Some students are attending graduate school before leaping into the job market. Senior Michelle Secunda, an Anthropology and Sociology double major, plans on attending Edge Hill University in the United Kingdom. The university, just 20 minutes away from Liverpool, is where Secunda hopes to earn her master’s in Pop Culture. Her master’s program includes a guided independent research project and dissertation on Barbie dolls.

Secunda says that applying outside of the United States was made possible by her time studying abroad at Knox. She says that this gave her the courage to live outside of her comfort zone. Like her peers in her graduating class, Secunda feels the pressure to have a direct path and career after graduation.

“I call grad school a stalling tactic. Yet, it also provides me with more opportunities and I don’t have to be automatically successful,” she said.

The map in Seymour Union praises Knox students on their successful plans after graduation. Secunda argues that having a success story isn’t based on an economic factor but rather a cool factor.

“More than anything I feel the pressure to be doing something cool. Everyone wants to have the coolest life. And, even if what you’re doing isn’t all that cool, it just has to sound cool.”

Connie Meade

Tags:  graduation internships post-bacc senior class seniors

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