Congratulations to the Class of 2020! Some of you are DONE and some of you are SO CLOSE to walking (six feet apart) across the graduation finish line. Here are a few things to remember as you prepare to attend college in the fall.
 Celebrate your accomplishment! You did it!
 Check in with your college – weekly. Some colleges are starting on campus classes in August, September, or October. Some will be completely online for the fall semester. Some won't make a final decision until early August.
 Schedule student orientation. Many colleges are holding orientations online or delaying until just before the fall semester. Either way, orientation usually includes valuable advising information and allows you to register for classes.
 Submit your final transcript and other required documents.
 Say thank you! Tell teachers, counselors, mentors, tutors, coaches and others that have helped you, “Thank you”. Give SPECIAL thanks and appreciation to your parents and family for support. Invite them to remain a part of your community to help you succeed in college!
 Make summer meaningful. Plan to work, improve your study skills, learn something new, or spend time (whether online or in person) with friends and family this summer. Save any money you earn for when you start college in the fall.
 Check your health records. Get your physical. Confirm your health insurance. Purchase a small first-aid kit. Maintain your exercise and nutrition routine over the summer. Don't allow the Freshman 15 to piggy back on the Quarantine 15.
 Reaffirm your higher calling and determination to graduate with a bachelor's in four years!
Staying home during the 2020 quarantine has forced us to be highly creative with the resources we have within our reach. We are discovering new ways to learn, entertain ourselves, and be creative geniuses. We have expressed our artistic creativity with sidewalk chalk art (artists). With friends and colleagues zooming into our living rooms, kitchens, and in some unfortunate situations, our bathrooms, we have quickly redecorated our backdrops (interior decorators). We’ve tried our best to imitate the latest Tik Tok videos (dancers, video editors).
Creative Career Options
What are some of the creative careers you are considering because of the quarantine? Supply chain management? Real estate? Health care worker? Educator? Musician?
Did you learn to play the guitar or harmonica? One creative family made and played homemade bagpipes.
Growing up, my family enjoyed driving to Galveston Island to experience Dickens on the Strand and watch the pipe bands. I would leave my family in the dust when I heard the pipes warming up. I would watch every twirl of the bass drum mallet, the flair of the side drummers, listen to every note, and appreciate my Irish heritage and red hair.
Ready to get creative?! To make your own homemade bagpipes, you need 2 recorders, a big ole straw, tape, a garbage bag, and apparently udder desperation. To understand the last statement, watch the Holderness Family create their DIY Recorder Bagpipe.
Creative Career Options for Bagpipers
For those who are seriously considering a career in bagpipe performance, you can find and join a college pipe band.
You could major in bagpipes at Carnegie Mellon University, known for its music education programs. CMU is a medium-sized school in Pittsburg, Pennsylvania where 72% of students graduate within 4 years.
You could attend The College of Wooster where bagpipes are a major part of the Fighting Scots culture (picture a Braveheart style entrance before football games). Located in Wooster, Ohio, CW is a small, liberal arts college where 77% of students graduate within 4 years.
Students with a bagpipe degree could complete in pipe band competitions, perform at concerts, play at funerals for service workers (police, firemen, soldiers), or play with U2 (Tomorrow), Van Morrison (Celtic Ray), or my favorite local rock band with a Celtic twist, the Killdares.
Creative Career Options for Non-bagpipers
Perhaps music is more of a hobby and not a pursuit of passion. I understand. There are hundreds of careers and thousands of majors to study to prepare for the millions of jobs available nationwide.
According to the 2019 projections for the next decade, 10 of the top 25 careers that are projected to grow between 17-32% require a bachelor’s degree. The industries include information technology, business management, human services, and more.
This will change as we adjust our careers and lives to minimize the spread of the coronavirus. Next month, I’ll be discussing the top 10 fastest growing bachelor’s degrees with Online Youth Empowerment Academy. Join the conversation. Follow OYEA on Facebook to sign up for the webinar.
Combining my youth ministry and educational consulting experience, I guide students to connect higher education with God's calling.