Today, I graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science and a minor in mathematics from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. That was the sentence in English. But the sentence in MIT-speak is: I'm graduating with a degree in 6-2 and a minor in 18 from MIT. In either case, I am entering "the world," in mind and hand (mens et manus), to contribute my share to the advancement of humanity.
Graduating is another stage in the performance of life. Everyone else sees that you graduate, and then the real show begins. Your skills are put to the test in front of the world audience.
To me, this is an exciting and invigorating prospect (project). I am ready to perform - I have spent the last four years preparing in mind and hand for what happens after graduation. But now that I'm here it seems more symbolic than anything else. Graduating is just a continuation of the growth I've already experienced. Nothing is changing in a drastic way internally; I am still the same person. I am ready to take on any challenges thrown at me, I am ready to make my own way in the world, I am ready to make my mark.
What does happen after graduation is that I am starting fresh. I can start with a clean slate again. This state happens so few times in a person's lifetime that each must be approached with care and awe. This time, when starting anew, I want to make the most of it. Despite having learned a lot from MIT, I have also messed up quite a bit. I want to make sure that I learn effectively from my mistakes and make the best of my time in life from now on. I am not saying that I will not make any more mistakes - I am just saying that I will at least learn from the mistakes I've already made.
I am starting fresh, I am keeping the good from the last four years in my life, I am repenting for my mistakes, I am keeping close to me the lessons of the last four years, I am becoming a responsible world citizen. The connections I have made while at MIT will last me for way more than a lifetime, and I will hold those close as well.
Get ready, world. Because I just compiled my code and am ready to execute.