After-graduation trip：We can never be young!
Sun Xiaodong hasn’t received a single job offer yet, but he isn’t concerned. The computer science major at Huazhong University of Science and Technology has no intentions of starting work immediately after graduating. Instead, the 23-year-old is planning a trip to Sichuan and Tibet with his classmates to celebrate their graduation.
Apart from its ritual function of saying farewell to college life, a graduation trip now also serves as a form of escapism and soul-searching for graduates.
Yu Dongxue, 22, a journalism major at Sichuan University, thinks a graduation trip with her classmates is a once in a lifetime experience – they’re not married and are not bound by job obligations. So, even though Yu already took a loan to finish college, she is still borrowing money to embark on her graduation rite to Jiuzhaigou.
“The most important point is that we are young, ” says Yu. “This innocent emotion among classmates and the spirit of curiosity and passion may never come back.”
Wang Cunfu, 22, a senior majoring in law at China University of Political Science and Law, agrees: “This summer is the last time we will have so few responsibilities, so I will do my best to go somewhere far away.”
Ma Yu’an went on a bicycle tour deep into Qinghai and Tibet for three months last year, as he couldn’t find a job after graduating from a degree in history at Tianjin University.
“For me, it was an escape from the pressure and anxiety of entering society, ” says Ma.
After meeting peers from all over the country on his trip, Ma now shares his stories of being on the road as a freelance blogger and photographer, even though his parents aren’t happy with it.
“I would not be working in this ‘unstable’ job had I not come out of my comfort zone, ” says Ma. “But I do see my life differently now.”
Gao Liankui, 24, who traveled to Nepal after graduating from Shenzhen University in 2011, agrees.
“Some students think it’s important to get a job right after their graduation, otherwise they may never get one, ” says Gao. “But that’s not true. Jobs will still be there when you return while youth doesn’t wait.”
According to Gao, traveling can improve your skills in various areas.
By working out a budget and a route, planning activities, and arranging accommodation, Gao feels he has become more organized and efficient. Talking to peers in hostels not only puts your communication skills to the test, it’s an eye-opening experience and a chance to make like-minded friends.
Nie Xiang, 28, a hostel owner in Dali, Yunnan province, supports this notion.
“Hostels are made for young travelers and offer them many opportunities to make friends, ” Nie says.