A Guide to Graduating

I’ve graduated.


More often than not you hear that university is going to be ‘the time of your life’, ‘an experience to never forget’ and ‘the golden years’. For some this is the case and university life is one brimming with happy (and often drunken) memories, sporting accolades and festival polaroids. I think this is often a slightly warped perspective of university so it should always be taken with a pinch of salt. But whether your experience has been rosy, or one characterised more so by stress, panic stricken looming deadlines and the unenviable task of trying to make organic eating affordable on a student budget. Either way, it all boils down to getting the certificate at the end and surviving three years of hard work. 

Over the course of the three years there have been plenty of times when dropping out seemed like it would be the easiest option and very tempting! But luckily I stuck at it and it now, with letters after my name, a dream job and a tasselled hat on my head it all seems worthwhile. So if you’re someone who is contemplating quitting then I would urge you to stick with it and focus on the finish line!

So back to the actual day…


It’s a sunny day in Nottingham and giddy graduants flock around the graduation hall with parents in tow brimming with pride. In flowing black gowns, suits, smart dresses and mortar boards we were all seeming to be accessorising with the glow that comes from cloaking yourself in black on an uncharacteristically hot English summer day. Once inside, the flutter of programmes fashioned into makeshift fans accompanied the applause which was trying its best not to lull despite the hundreds of graduates it had to endure. 


The Vice Chancellor’s hand had been shaken, the crisp certificate collected and nerves about falling over in front of thousands of people had been quashed….it was time to relax, smile and of course take a few photos. It would have been nice to add the mandatory ‘hat shot’ to the collection but unfortunately rounding up friends who had dispersed in quests to find good photo spots, Pimms, buffet finger-food and proud tutors was much harder than I ever expected. 

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In the run up to graduation lots of people get a little nervous about the all important issue of what to wear. My tutor, having sat in on hundreds of ceremonies, had seen wardrobe-malfunctions aplenty so shared some pearls of wisdom. Below is a selection of the best mixed in with a few tips of my own. If you stick to these then you’ll have nothing to worry about!

1.  Don’t wear anything too short…no one wants to see your crotch on the day of your graduation. 

2. Wear a neutral colour…I opted for black but lots of people go for blues and reds. 

3. Wear shoes you can walk in. Falling over on a stage in front of all of your contemporaries, their parents and a film crew is the stuff of nightmares. Plan for the worst and don’t add too many inches unless you are confident in your prancing abilities.

4. Try to avoid hat hair with a good blow-dry… think Kim Sears and K-Middy- experts at great hair that is able to withstand humidity and the elements.

5. Smile! It may be the only time you ever graduate so enjoy it. Worrying about new jobs, lack of any job at all, future plans and sore feet have no place at all on your fancy day. 


And a funny losing-my-hat-bunny-tooth one for the road…


I promise Zanzibar pictures, reviews and blogs are coming soon…

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3 thoughts on “A Guide to Graduating

  1. Pingback: Gambling on a Girlfriend | A Stylish Review

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