Graduate student commencement will occur Friday, and the undergraduate student commencement will occur Saturday.

With the end of the year approaching, seniors are taking time to remember their stint at IUP.

After spending several years at a college campus, it can be hard to let go of connections to people and places that were made along the way. Graduation is a time that harbors both feelings of success and happiness, as well as a feeling of sadness.

“The feeling is excitement,” Logan Massey (senior, social studies education) said, “and maybe a little regretful for not doing as well as I could have.”

Massey also said that, while tests and exams are all stressful and sometimes difficult to overcome, he will miss being a student. This is due to both the open nature of the professors in the history department, as well as the fact that you are constantly surrounded by those that share your interests, especially those within your major.

Other feelings generate from seniors that have had different experiences than Massey at IUP. Jennifer Miller (senior, communications media) presented her outlook on graduating and moving on.

“It feels good,” Miller said, “but also a little nerve-wracking, not knowing what exactly post-college life will be like.”

Miller said that she will miss being close to friends the most, considering that some are across the state or the country, keeping in contact could be hard to do. That being said, Miller emphasized that she feels prepared to venture out with the education she got and is optimistic for the future.

Both Massey and Miller also revealed the plans that they have after graduating. In the case of Massey, he wishes to be able to go west for a while to hike and see the sights that are there. For him, it would also double as a chance to clear his mind and get a better picture of how he wants to carry on his life in order to find work in his major.

In Miller’s case, she is planning to move to Nashville to work at an internship for media marketing. Taking different approach than Massey, she is going into something that will directly lead to more connections and allow her to find a job in her major.

In addition to revealing what their plans and experiences at IUP, both Miller and Massey revealed what they most enjoyed from their time on campus.

“My favorite thing about being at IUP was all the different opportunities it opened up to me,” Miller said. “It allowed me to join many different clubs and groups such as IUP-TV.”

For Massey, he most enjoyed the experiences that professors gave him. In his mind, it was great to have people genuinely care and have a desire to see him succeed and excel at his studies. Both seniors also shared some of their least favorite aspects of being on campus.

In the case of Massey, the lack of specialization in more niche areas of study were more negative. In the case of Miller, being away from her family for long periods of time was hard.

With seniors leaving, the feelings are radiating outward to the rest of the IUP community. In the case of Joshua Allen (junior, communications media), he is preparing for his own graduation.

“I spend a lot of time in the TV studio or editing bay in Davis Hall,” Allen said. “I may not have the same access or freedom in a TV studio when I graduate, so I think I will miss that the most.”

Despite not being a senior until next school year, Allen says that he feels the education he has received, as well as the education he will get in the next year, will prepare him for his future.

The feelings of sadness and success are coming from the seniors of IUP, and we all wish them well in the future endeavors that they choose to embark on. Good luck to all of them.

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