Monday, April 16, 2001 Volume 66, Issue 133



Desperados anxious about future

Melissa Kummer

When this semester began I was eight hours short of being classified as a senior in college. Soon, those eight hours and six more, will be completed.

Now, I find myself in a puzzling dilemma. Within the next few weeks, I will become a 20-year-old senior.

The student population strives towards the common goal of obtaining a piece of paper from UH that says, "You did it!"

So, what's the problem? Well, college graduates are adults, right? I'm not.

Graduation is frightening. I've been a student for the past 16 or so years. That was both my job and the center of my social world. The change between student and graduate is tremendous.

With so little time left in school, the realization dawned on me that I may not be ready to graduate and get tossed out into the cold, cruel world as an adult quite yet.

My friends and I have a hard time calling each adults. It seems like only yesterday we got our high school diplomas.

Granted, looking back at the past three years, I realize the Melissa Kummer who began college in 1998 is not the same Melissa Kummer who is writing this column today.

My priorities have changed from a shallow need for new clothes and concert tickets to the desire to become independent and appreciative of the good things I have in my life.

Isn't it amazing what happens to you when you grow up? Things you've taken for granted all your life are viewed in a new light. They become important gifts for which you should be thankful.

Suddenly school becomes fun, siblings evolve into friends and parents shed their image as the stupidest people you know.

Some people believe everyone has three personas: the person others perceive, one's own perception of oneself and the person one truly is.

The goal, if I might venture an educated guess, is to make the three as unified as possible.

If the point of life is to survive it, success is doomed. However, if there is some deeper meaning, that would explain why people say "life is hard."

As for those who say that being an adult means getting up at 6 a.m. and driving through rush-hour traffic to a full-time job every day, there's no problem here. That sounds like college.

Unfortunately, I think being an adult means something more internal, something you can't measure with a clock.

If it means getting to the point in your life where you can say "Thank you" for all the things you have taken for granted since birth, most of us are well on our way to becoming adults.

As the transition from one stage of life into the next stage nears for those lucky students who paid their dues and hold their heads high, the rest of us wonder what it will be like when we earn our caps and gowns.

If graduating college is as smooth a transition as graduating from high school, I can take it. If not, I don't know what to expect.

I must admit the unknown makes me nervous. Will we magically be forced to transform into adults? If so, I might start considering a new double major that would extend my college time by two or three years.

Kummer, a senior journalism major, 
can be reached at

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