May 26, 2010 Graduation has been over for roughly 92 hours (yes, three days and 20 hours), and I already feel far more grateful for the Hamilton experience than I expected. I knew my experience was valuable, but I didn't realize how practical and impactful it would be in the short-term.
I'm currently in D.C. looking for an apartment with my girlfriend, a graduate from Hamilton. Since numerous friends of mine from Hamilton will be moving into the area, I don't expect to ever feel lonely. I'm not exactly sure how I'm going to go about my beat (in journalism, the subject covered is called one's beat), but I do have ample connections with Washingtonians in think-tanks, as a result of spending a semester in D.C. with Hamilton's D.C. program. I've also met fantastic journalists (i.e. Chris Hedges, et al) when they visited the Hamilton campus, and I'm hoping that experience can turn into a fruitful conversation and connection.
If I absolutely need one, Hamilton currently has an apartment available in the area that is available to alumni (geez...that's me...). That's a relief -- so if I don't find my ideal apartment whereever I am looking, I do have a place in the area in a great location to fall back on. Still though, my search is turning out well, and I'm not expecting to need to rely on that apartment -- cross your fingers...
Some of my best friends from Hamilton will be either working or studying somewhere in the Northeast, which will make NYC, Boston, and all other prominent cities in the Northeast far more accessible.
...But...at the moment it still is a bit overwhelming to realize the four years are over. I'm not the same person I was when I first walked onto the Hamilton campus. I'm far more critically aware of my surroundings and I feel I am a much better speaker, writer and thinker in general than I ever could have expected. My recent past is colored with worldly experiences that are unique to me and were made uniquely available to me by Hamilton. It's a tough job market to be let loose into, but my resume is a competitive one, and that's because of the opportunities I was provided by Hamilton.
It's going to be weird not waking up and knocking on the doors of my best friends (many of which were adjacent to mine) on the way to breakfast, and I don't know how well I'll adjust to non-Hamilton life, if only because I've pursued it only limitedly.
I'm excited though, and three days after graduation, I can already feel that those four years of my life at Hamilton will likely be regarded in the days to come as four of my best.
To Hamilton -- thanks for everything.
To my readers -- thanks for listening.
This is my last entry.
(The crowd rises, the back doors open, a bright light shows through, the sound of the city re-emerges, and they walk collectively back into the real world...)