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The Student News Site of Loyola University Maryland

The Greyhound

College seniors lose graduation and enter an unstable job market


Private and public colleges are taking every precaution to protect their students, the community, and to stop the overall spread of the Coronavirus. In the U.S universities have closed campuses and moved to online classes.

While schools are enacting appropriate precaution, the lives of college seniors are being put into disarray. Many universities have made the decision to cancel or postpone graduation for seniors. Danielle Schweitzer, a senior at Merrimack College, got an email that her graduation is postponed and she feels uncertain that everyone in her class will attend. Schweitzer said, “I was at first and still am upset because graduation is something you work for your whole life.”

Some universities have made the serious decision to cancel graduation. Choyce Bostian, a senior at the University of Pennsylvania, felt distraught when he was told his class will have a virtual graduation. “It brought me back to all-nighters I went through, the countless hours of studying and preparation, the emotional and physical stress I had gone through in four years just to walk across the stage and hear my name,” Bostian said.

Along with not having a formal graduation, college seniors will miss out on senior traditions like senior trips, dinners and banquets. Holly Lloyd, a senior at Loyola University Maryland said, “It is hard to believe that we will not get to experience all of the rituals and different celebrations that seniors normally get to experience at Loyola when they graduate.”

Students are trying to adjust to doing school online and being sent away from their college housing. Bostian is trying to balance his school work but does see the positives of having quality time with his family. Nevertheless, Bostian said, “It’s been difficult to work out of a foreign environment with the same class rigor.”

In addition to  adjusting to home, many college seniors are taken away from their best friends and roommates. Many college students have been video chatting friends to keep up with their social lives.  “I find it interesting to see how many college friends I’ve talked to over the two weeks that I’ve been home. A bond was formed where everyone wants to be back together,” Schweitzer said.

In light of this dark time, Bostian and Schweitzer signed contracts and are confident about their future jobs. Bostian will be working a full-time consulting job with Accenture in Philadelphia after graduation and Schweitzer will be working as an accountant at KPMG in Boston in the fall. Lloyd is currently thinking about going back to Loyola in the fall for graduate school.

Although jobs are still available for some, there are many seniors who do not already have jobs which can cause anxiety. Michael Lombardi, a senior at Manhattan College, is fearful of the lack of jobs that are going to be available from this outbreak. Lombardi said, “I personally was in the interview process in the midst of the outbreak, but this process has now been put on hold for the time being.”

 Andrea Hoffman, an academic advisor at Loyola, emphasized some concerns about the job market for college seniors, but challenged students to “remember our priorities.” Hoffman said, “While all of this may be stressful now, it’s always important to look at the bigger picture and the health of our nation and the world.”

Although the final semester for college seniors was taken from them, many are staying positive and are pushing forward to brighter days. “The fear of the unknown is pretty daunting and we are learning a lot as we’re going through this whole pandemic,” Lombardi said. “But the thought of what’s next is something I constantly think about.”

Some seniors are using this experience as fuel to ignite their upcoming plans. “Eventually I will need to move on and use those emotions to work harder in the future,” Lloyd said.

Feature Image: Courtesy of Michael Lombardi

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College seniors lose graduation and enter an unstable job market