Written BY Monica Page

Graduation: that beautiful moment where your $200,000 education is summed up in a handshake with President Shalala in the Bank United Center. It is the moment we all patiently wait for. This is the moment where those 2 a.m., Redbull-sponsored study sessions in Club Richter seem semi-worth it (only a little). After all the toil and hard work you discover a new world: life after Miami. Even if you plan to stay in Miami, life will never be the same.

“I love the smell of napalm in the morning!” – Apocalypse Now

That first morning after graduation: your food will taste different, the sun will shine brighter, and then reality will hit you like a freight train. Student loans, post-grad job, the prospect of grad school, that random DVD you left in your dorm room that UNICCO has probably chucked by now. For some, walking across that stage and getting your diploma will be the highlight of your life for a couple of weeks/months. Now, I’m not comparing life after Miami to Vietnam, but after the keggers and SoBe parties die down and that first bill from “insert-loan-company-here” comes in the mail, not even Marlon Brando can save you.

“Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.” – Gone With The Wind

When you go in for interviews or just general networking meetings the term “University of Miami” will carry a lot of weight. People will have negative impression of how you act and that you can hold your liquor better than a Cajun at Mardi Gras. All the above can be amusing, but you’ll always get that one. The one person who feels that need to inform the world of their Ivy League education sponsored by their great grandfather. You’ll go into meetings and see their pressed Yale blue jackets layered over a Hugo Boss shirt and think, “Why oh why did Miami have to have orange and green as their official colors?!” But when you really think about it, who cares? Miami is a great school in academics, a great school in sports and offers many opportunities students at other schools will never get. Plus, we are ranked number one in Florida so all the other schools can just go back and play in the snow while we study under palm trees.

“Badges? We ain’t got no badges! We don’t need no badges! I don’t have to show you any stinking badges!” – The Treasure of the Sierra Madre

As I said above, Miami graduates can be sometimes be attached to negative stereotypes. We have a general tendency to go into places like we already have the job and act like we are the best. Listen up Miami; sometimes you may need to do a little bit more to get the job. Even if you have a 4.0 through your entire undergraduate career, there is still the prospect that you may need to apply for a specific certificate or program to prove you have knowledge in the area. Take the certification and shut-up, that way you can get hired and run down the hallways throwing up the U to all the other employees (take an extra long stop at the UF and FSU offices).

“Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine.” – Casablanca

Remember that one time on South Beach where you were doing Sake bombs and ended up dancing on top of tables like Jenny from the Block? Yeah, that will probably come back to haunt you. There are people in the world; no one knows where they come from (probably Mars) who remember every little detail of every other person’s life. These are the people who randomly post on your Facebook wall about elementary school kickball injuries that no one has any recollection of. When it comes to life after Miami, have a sit-down with this person. Tell them, “your overall existence will probably hamper any chance I have of getting a proper job, please shut-up until further notice.” As another prerequisite, if you happen to be going out to a networking event or interview, do it 50 miles away from this person and any bartenders/waiters who may have knowledge of your escapades