Lauren: The pros and cons of graduating early, according to a 20-year-old senior

People used to tell me that four years of college would fly by, but I hardly knew it would be this fast. Unless of course, you do it in two-and-a-half.
There was a period of time in my college career when I was unsure how to answer the question of my class year or class status, but as my “four-year” plan shifted and developed, it became clear that it was my best interest to walk the stage with the Class of 2019. While the time I spent on my undergraduate degree seems relatively short, I participated in much more than I thought, motivated by the fact that there was a deadline on my college career that was sooner than my peers.
I reported on legislative affairs in the Massachusetts Statehouse for a Boston-area newspaper; I was an editor for the Daily Free Press, the BU’s independent student newspaper; I was a production assistant and on-camera reporter for BUTV10’s award-winning show, On That Point; I interned with BU Today, BU’s campus news website and newsletter; I took a semester off to work full-time for, the regional news and information website of the Boston Globe; I studied abroad in Australia and interned for NewsLocal, a localized branch of the Daily Telegraph; I helped out on the administrative team of the Department of Journalism; and of course, I was a COM Ambassador for two whole years of my college career.
That doesn’t mean that sacrifices weren’t made. I wasn’t able to join all of the on-campus organizations that I was interested in; I spent every summer taking at least one course as well as overloading during some semesters; and I missed out on making more memories with my college friends.
Despite my time at BU being cut short, I don’t regret it. The idea that, in just a few short months, I will be out in the field doing what I love professionally makes me excited for the future. Sure, I’m beyond terrified, but I know that BU has given me the foundation I needed to be able to pursue my dreams. Now more than ever, journalism is of paramount importance, and I believe that the landscape that I’m entering is simply a brand new phase of learning outside of the classroom.
No matter how many years you plan to spend in college, just make sure you are making the most of your education. If you’re considering graduating early and can handle the responsibilities that come with it, I highly encourage it. If you want to stay all four years, I’m sure you’ll still look back on them and have the same amount of satisfaction. Graduating college in general can be scary at times, but I think BU has done a pretty good job at making sure that you’re ready for the real world.

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