By Lacy Scarmana
Moving a tassel from one side of a graduation cap to the other may take only a few seconds, but it symbolizes the transition between the familiarity of the school environment and the uncertainty of the future.
As college students graduate this spring, many of them will be looking for jobs. Others are looking to continue their education. On this episode of Noon Edition, we found out what a college degree means to three students in particular.
At the end of his undergraduate career, Indiana University student Eric Benzschawel will have degrees in linguistics and Germanic studies, as well as minors in Dutch and western European studies. He will attend Brandeis University in the fall to pursue a Master’s Degree in computational linguistics.
Benzschawel says the peak of his college career came when he presented his honors thesis to faculty in the linguistics department.
“They looked at me and said this was phenomenal work; it’s halfway to a PhD thesis,” he says. “And that was really like okay, I probably did an okay job here and I think I’m doing the right thing with my life.”
Stacey Zike had quite a bit of work experience before she decided to get her associate’s degree in business administration from Ivy Tech- Bloomington. But when she lost her job of more than 20 years, she found it difficult to convince employers of her qualifications.
“I never really thought I had to have the degree to prove that and so when you look for jobs it’s definitely more of an accomplishment and a confidence builder than anything else for me,” Zike says.
She says the things learned and opportunities received in college can’t be found in any work environment.
Zike is looking for a job now and there is some good news for her. A recent survey from the National Association of Colleges and Employers found businesses plan on hiring 6.8 percent more college graduates this spring than they did last year.
Zach Crenshaw says that his four years at DePauw University has made him consider broadened his worldview, allowed him to listen to people with different viewpoints, and has made him a better person.
“One of the things that has really changed is I think my openness to new perspectives, my ability to have conversations with people that are completely different from me, and understanding the benefits of that,” he says.
Indiana University Graduation
Indiana University is graduating the most students out of any college in Indiana this spring. Here’s a more detailed look at who those students are and what they studied.