A couple of weeks ago we ran a post referring to a story by the Washington Post‘s higher education reporter, Anya Kamenetz, who detailed the five worst mistakes she made as a new college grad.We also took the unusual step of soliciting reader comments – we wanted to know what advice our faithful readership would give if they could pay a visit to their recently-graduated former selves. Here are some of those pearls of wisdom, both spiritual and practical, that caught the eye of the Via Meadia team:From Kenny – “One aspect of ‘form’ is dressing well and being neatly groomed. In other words, appearance counts, so don’t be a slob even though the majority of your college profs might have looked like that way.”From Cicero – “Don’t be wedded to one career. I’ve met many happy people who started out as something (journalist, business person, eco-animal-climate Messiah) who ended up switching to something else when the right opportunity came along. That’s a very uncontroversial statement, but it took those people serious courage to switch. I’m not saying flit around for decades, but when you’re young, you can afford to make some mistakes with your work-life.”From Corlyss – “Men and women communicate differently. Learn and use the differences to become a more effective communicator with both sexes.”From Bart Hall – “Find an intellectual passion (or two) and pursue it with both diligence and delight. It will make you a vastly more interesting and satisfied person.”From MW – “Be humble. You know a lot less than you think you do.”From James Banks – “Marrying the right person, being a devoted parent or honoring your mother and father rightly as they advance in years is more important than whether you become a financial analyst or securities lawyer. “From Douglas Levene – “The first judge I clerked for advised his clerks to keep six months’ salary in the bank so you could always quit if you had to. It’s a lot easier to adhere to ethical standards if you know you can walk away.”To get more advice from our readers, you can go back to the original post and scroll down through the comments. My grandfather used to tell me that if you could sell your life experience when you retired for as much as it cost you to acquire it, we would all retire rich. He was right, and recent grads — and others — can benefit by listening to reader reflections on mistakes they’ve made and what they learned from them.
Readers Advise Recent Grads