Letters from grads, to grads 5/7 - The Echo News
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Letters from grads, to grads 5/7

Taylor graduates give advice to seniors

Hannah Harvey shares her experiences after Taylor with graduating seniors.

Hannah Harvey shares her experiences after Taylor with graduating seniors.

By Gabby Carlson | Echo

Hannah Harvey ’16 Christian Education

When I graduated from Taylor I was unemployed, so I didn’t really have an idea of what was in store. I knew I wanted to move to the Chicagoland area and live with my sister. I did think, “Oh I’m not going to have homework. I’m going to have so much free time and energy.” But working all day, 9–6, and then cooking dinner, going to the gym, running errands, and volunteering in the church gives you a different kind of exhaustion. College is full of mental and emotional exhaustion, while I think life after Taylor can be full of physical exhaustion. But the idea of not having to do homework is just as good as you think it’s going to be.

I currently work in a church in Human Resources and also as an After School Junior High Teacher for at-risk youth. Taylor’s focus on discipleship is really unique compared to what other colleges or churches even offer, which isn’t something I realized until I left the Taylor bubble. Taylor taught me how to articulate what I’ve learned, how I’ve grown in my faith and how to continue to pursue lifelong learning. This means willingly stepping into confrontation when problems arise in the workplace, redefining my definition of success to reflect what the Word says is success and constantly reflecting on what I can learn and who I can learn from.

At Taylor it felt so easy to make new friends. All you had to do was go on a Spring Break trip or a wing retreat or take a new class in order to make a new friend. Life outside of Upland is so different. Not everyone had a Taylor experience with “intentional community” and wants to grab coffee for a one-on-one. This means YOU have to be intentional. So you have to take the chance that asking someone to coffee may be a bit awkward at first and be okay with the fact that building relationships with people takes WAY more time. You’re not living with these people. You may only see them once a week at Bible study, at church or the gym. But just because it takes longer does not mean that it isn’t worth the effort or that they can’t turn into great friends. Relationships outside of Taylor take time and intentionality.

I think I’ve become way more disciplined since leaving Taylor. I’ve created a budget (for the first time in my life), I have weekly commitments to Bible study, small group, and designated “nights off.” My life has routine, which is so nice. I don’t have awkward two-hour breaks between a 1 o’clock and 4 o’clock class. I work from 9–6 and have a regular sleep schedule. However, I’ve noticed that I am going to be responsible for pursuing lifelong learning on my own time. I’m not required to go to class to learn, read certain books or complete evaluations after an event. Therefore, I have to become more disciplined and pursue those opportunities on my own—whether that means joining a Bible study, borrowing books, having lunch with a coworker, watching a webinar or attending a conference.

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