Graduating from university during a pandemic

Over the past three years, I’ve been working towards a Bachelor degree in Translation and Intercultural Communication, and the day has finally come. I’ve submitted my thesis, I have finished all of my exams, and I can finally call myself a professional translator. I have been working as a independent contractor in EN>NO & NO>EN translation since February, and I’ve been enjoying it a whole lot.

Studying during a pandemic has certainly been a struggle, and my mental health has deteriorated a lot over these past years. I’ve struggled a lot with anxiety and depression, and it has affected my university life quite a bit. My first year was okay, the second year I spent mostly abroad in York in England, until the pandemic hit and we got sent home in late March of 2020. The year abroad in York was the most exciting part of my degree, and I’m so happy I got to experience that. Finishing up the third year has been a struggle, as it has been fully remote learning, and I’ve had to move back in with my parents at the ripe age of 29, going on 30. At this point I can’t wait to get back up on my feet so I can save up and move into my own place.

Remote learning has been difficult, to say the least. When lessons feel like a podcast, there’s a very slim chance of me actually paying attention to what is being taught. Surprisingly enough, I have done quite well on our exams, but that is all thanks to my study group, and our countless study sessions over Zoom. Graduating now feels kind of lackluster. There’s no ceremony, no gatherings, nothing. We just receive our grades, and that’s it. I wish there was something more substantial to it, as it does not leave me feeling accomplished at all.

Unfortunately there isn’t anything we can do about it. I’m just lucky I already have a job, and that I get to actually use my degree for something. Hopefully I’ll be able to pick up more work in the future. Until then, I will just enjoy having free time again, and I’ll try to actually relax for once. Nothing can describe the feeling of being able to read, paint or play videogames without feeling guilty about it.

How has the pandemic been treating you? Have you graduated during the pandemic? I’m sure we’ve all struggled in the same way, and I hope it will be easier for the coming classes to get through school in one piece. Just know that you’re not alone, and that this is not what school would be like in a normal situation. Everything you do is more than enough.

16 thoughts on “Graduating from university during a pandemic

  1. Congrats on your degree! A lot of things have been harder during the pandemic, but how we respond really can make a difference. I teach online and I can definitely understand that it can sometimes be a real challenge.


  2. Wow I went to University of York, I’m so glad you enjoyed your year abroad in York as it is such a gorgeous city! I graduated this time last year and I love this insight, who would have known another cohort of students would be graduating into a pandemic!


  3. Congratulations!!! & that’s wonderful you’re already working as an independent contractor.
    I had to take a break from working on my year 2 thesis, but I’m hoping to finish it this year so I can graduate too & move onto the next stage of my life (phd? job?)


  4. Congratulations on your degree first of all! Second, I think you should give a pat on your back for having finished it during such a different situation!! Hope it will bring you even more opportunities x


  5. What an awesome degree and I know that York’s linguistics department is top class. I work in technical writing and we rely on an external translation company to provide all our content in multiple languages. It’s a very valuable skill. Best of luck! X


  6. Congratulations! With the circumstances, you should be proud of yourself! I’m doing my last year for my bachelors starting this September. I did a whole year of school online so I completely understand you. I’m a science student so remote learning has been chaos for me. Not sure what’s gonna happen in September but I’m ready to get the degree haha. Great post! xx
    TheQuietGirl |


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