Post Graduation Blues

19th January 2023

View from the Millennium Bridge at twilight with a vibrant purple and pink sky, leading towards the illuminated dome of St. Paul's Cathedral in London

What can you do against lack of intellectual stimulation?

December graduation has passed, and all freshly minted bachelors, masters and PhDs are venturing into the so called ‘real world’. Taking a step back though reveals that leaving the unique world of academia after being fostered by that lifestyle for many years can be harder than imagined. Engaging with Academia post-graduation is therefore an important and overlooked factor for alumni, but fortunately there are many ways for ‘ex-students’ to stay intellectually and socially engaged within the academic community.

One factor affecting recent graduates is the lack of intellectual stimulation, which can affect alumni in a variety of ways. Without the structure and challenge of academic coursework, some graduates may feel bored or unfulfilled in their jobs or daily lives. Additionally, the absence of regular opportunities for critical thinking, problem-solving, and learning new information can make it difficult for alumni to continue to develop their cognitive abilities and skills, leading to a potential lack of motivation and a feeling of stagnation in their personal and professional growth. Also, the loss of the routine students are used to with lectures, seminars as well as the academic calendar contributes to the students' post graduation blues.

Mathematics lecture in progress with a male teacher explaining a concept,
students raising hands to ask questions, and complex equations written on the
blackboard in the

Missing the feeling of being part of an educational cohort?

According to the City Mental Health Alliance, 49% of students experience a decline in mental health after leaving university. The loss of a social cohort can be a significant challenge for alumni post-graduation. University can be a formative period in which students build strong connections and friendships with their peers, lecturers, and establish a network. Additionally, societies and clubs in which much of the cohort is found and in which students engage with regularly are lost when they leave university. The transition to the ‘real world’ can therefore be difficult without that social support network. Additionally, the loss of a sense of community and belonging can lead to feelings of isolation and loneliness. Some alumni may also struggle to find new social connections and activities that provide the same sense of camaraderie and shared experience that they had in university. Without the daily interactions and sense of community that they had with their peers in university, some students may feel disconnected from others, missing a sense of belonging and the shared experience that they had with their classmates and friends.

49% of students experience a decline in mental health after leaving university.


On the other hand, the lack of a social support network can also affect Alumni’s professional development. The social connections and networks that students form during university can be important resources in helping them find jobs, build their professional networks, and establish themselves in their careers. Without the support and guidance of peers, it can be more challenging for alumni to navigate the world of work. Furthermore, the absence of regular opportunities for socialising and participating in extracurricular activities can also negatively impact mental and emotional well-being, making it difficult for students to maintain a healthy work-life balance. These can also lead to a lack of motivation in their personal and professional life.

While this all sounds jarring and may not apply to all recent graduates, it is a reality which many of us will face. However, there are many opportunities we can take to stay engaged; socially and intellectually.

Taking online courses or attending workshops can help alumni continue their education and stay current in their field of study, even after graduation. Many universities and organisations offer online courses and workshops in a variety of subjects, so people can choose to take classes in areas that align with their interests and career goals. This can also help alumni to develop new skills or to stay current on new developments in their field.

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laptop, notebook, and smartphone in a well-lit indoor space with large

You can still be involved with your cohort and the experts in your field after leaving university

Networking events and seminars can provide social connections post-graduation by giving you the opportunity to meet new people and establish connections in your field of interest or industry. Attending conferences or networking events can provide an opportunity to learn about new developments in a field of interest and to connect with other professionals and experts. Furthermore, attending seminars allows for the opportunity to learn from experts, ask questions and participate in discussions. This can provide a great opportunity to learn more about the industry or field you are in. In both cases, you can use the opportunity to build relationships by engaging in conversations, exchanging contact information, and following up with people you meet. If you stay near your university, you can also continue to engage with some of your favourite student societies, acting as a mentor to students currently in university.

Additionally, by attending these events regularly, you can establish yourself as a professional, or even an expert, in your field and become a part of the community. As you build relationships, you can gain access to new opportunities, get advice, and support from others, and have a sense of belonging. It's important to remember that networking is not only about asking for job opportunities, but also about building relationships, learning, and sharing knowledge, and providing value to others. While the aforementioned clubs and societies are left behind by students when they graduate, many of them allow for alumni to stay active with events, and generally in their respective societies allowing for another social outlet. Overall, engaging with academia post-graduation can help alumni to stay connected to their institution or the field of study they enjoyed during their student life and continue to develop their skills and knowledge, and build a professional network that can be beneficial for their careers in the ‘real world’.

Abstract illustration of three people at a dining table, with stylized
representations of wine glasses, bottles, a plate with cheese and pizza
slices, and a bowl of olives on a colorful

It is important to not only maintain your network once you leave University, but to expand it as well

Now how do we at Education Evolved fit into the equation?

We here at Education Evolved are based in the academic world and understand its importance beyond the piece of paper students receive at graduation. Our seminars which are free to attend, and advertised on our website are a great opportunity for students to reconnect with academia. The seminars are held by experts in their fields and provide information and insights on fascinating and relevant topics of research. Attendees have the chance to learn from these experts, ask questions and participate in discussions. This way recent graduates can stay academically challenged and engage with fellow academics. We also provide a subscription service which allows users to continue their academic journeys in revolutionary ways, utilising among other things virtual reality. This allows a continuation of intellectual stimulation available to everyone in an engaging way and puts you at the centre of your learning journey. As the common saying goes, ‘you never stop learning!’, and with Education Evolved your academic journey never ends. See you soon at one of our FREE monthly seminars!

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