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The Power of the Intentional Yes

New Professionals and Graduate Students Graduate New Professional
May 25, 2021 Alex Schmied

There’s something about new opportunities that equally excites and terrifies me (if you don’t believe me, look at my last LinkedIn post, I used the same words). Perhaps that’s imposter syndrome talking, or maybe that’s the struggle of trying to navigate being a new professional in a pandemic. Whatever it is, there’s always a part of me that eagerly jumps at new opportunities without a care in the world and a part of me that takes her time to think it through. 

However, something I have always reminded myself is to not say yes to everything. I’m only one person. How could I possibly say yes to everything and continue to say yes to myself? If my life were a movie, this would be the part that flashes back to my senior year of undergrad where I took on far too much and lost many of my friends (0/10 would not recommend). But life isn’t a movie, and sometimes we have to learn lessons the hard way. 

I say yes to things that will challenge me, make me grow, and give me connections. When I said “yes” to West Chester University’s Higher Education Policy and Student Affairs graduate program in Spring 2018, I had no idea that Spring 2020 would happen in my living room. And although graduating in the height of the COVID-19 pandemic was a bittersweet ending, I was more than happy to share my story. Listen to me and the lovely Dr. Dana Malone talk about graduating, job searching, and starting as a new professional, all virtual on this episode of The Academic Life: 


Author: Alex Schmied (she/her) works as an Academic Program Coordinator at The University of Delaware and is involved in the NPGS SC Leadership Team. She loves exploring the city, trying new things, and meeting dogs almost as much as she loves meeting people. Alex can be found on Instagram at @ads_sap