When you walk across the commencement stage and shake all of those important hands, your title of “Blue Raider” doesn’t fall off your nametag, and the spirit of being “True Blue” isn’t wiped off your personality. The paper symbolizing your completion of a degree may change your life, but the positive things you picked up here shouldn’t change at all.
No matter where your career takes you, you should bring a little bit of MTSU with you. And while you may not be taking classes on campus anymore, this can still be your home, and you will always find useful resources and fun on this campus.
Continue to live out the True Blue Pledge
Not only are you “a learner, now and forever,” but you are also a lifelong “member of this diverse community.” When you first read the True Blue Pledge, you were probably an incoming freshman at Convocation, wide-eyed and ready for your adventure through college. The pledge is one of the first things you do to establish yourself as a student here, and it’s one of the first collaborative efforts you take on with your classmates.
The pledge was designed to give you guidelines for a successful college career, but it should apply even after you receive your degree. You can always focus on being both a listener and a speaker, commit to reason instead of violence, and stay honest in both word and deed. Staying True Blue and following these words to the best of your ability will help you find success in your career, in your community, and as a Blue Raider.
To read more about the True Blue Pledge and find what it means to others, check out my article, “True Blue Pledge: What Does it Mean to You?”
Get involved with the Alumni Association
Speaking of the True Blue Pledge, a large focus encourages you to be “engaged in the life of this community.” The best way to stay true to that is by getting involved with MTSU’s Alumni Association.
The Alumni Association provides resources to MTSU graduates and keeps our sense of community intact as our alumni spread around the world. The group has a large presence to welcome alumni at homecoming, honors distinguished alumni each year and even plans group trips to exotic destinations!
Another great opportunity for alumni is the Alumni Summer College, a fun-packed weekend of learning, entertainment and camaraderie. Former classmates return to campus to hear lectures from MTSU faculty, distinguished alumni and current students and enjoy local art showcases and other fun field trips.
If you want to get involved, start by attending alumni events and contribute to your alma mater in whatever way you can. You may even become a resource to others, using your knowledge and experience with the Alumni Association to help others remain involved!
Take advantage of alumni resources
Perhaps the best perk for being an MTSU student is the resources, right? You could check out books at the James E. Walker Library, access great career software and use our state-of-the-art Campus Rec Center without having to leave campus! It’d be a real bummer if you lost all of these privileges once you finished taking classes.
Bummer not, I tell you! As alumni, you still have access to many of the great resources provided to you as a student. For example, you can get a “Community Borrowers Card” and still check out books from Walker Library, and you have the opportunity to purchase a membership to the Campus Recreation Center. Incredibly useful job-seeking resources are also available to alumni, just as they are to students, including the great Lightning CareerLink and specialized career fairs.
Helping you succeed in your field doesn’t stop when classes do. MTSU is committed to providing you with these helpful resources because they care about your long-term success!
Join the Blue Raider Athletic Association
Your days of cheering on the Blue Raiders from the student section may be finished, but that shouldn’t stop you from being a fan for life! Studies have shown that a school’s athletic success can have a positive impact on the value of your degree, so getting involved with the Blue Raider Athletic Association, or BRAA for short, is a great way to stay connected to campus!
You’ll definitely want to purchase season tickets to keep watching all 17 (!!) MTSU teams play, and a BRAA membership only sweetens the deal! Earning discounts from area restaurants, receiving a parking pass, and getting access to exclusive events are only a few of the perks that come with contributing to the success of our athletic programs.
Oh, and a fun hint: if you join the BRAA Young Alumni program, your first year of membership is free!
Don’t stop with that first degree
Hear me out. You know what’s better than one degree? Two degrees!
You may not think that you’re cut out for graduate school, but believe me, you are. Your earning potential will skyrocket, and the variety of job opportunities will also be greater!
It’s totally worth it, and here’s another Student Voice hack: you can probably attend grad school for free.
Let me be the first to congratulate you on your graduation from MTSU! You worked hard, you had late nights and early mornings, and you did it in True Blue fashion. We’re all proud of you, now get out there and be the best [insert career path here] you can be! You’re a Blue Raider for life, my friend!
Author Kobe Hermann is a senior at MTSU, majoring in management in the Jones College of Business and minoring in business administration. The views and opinions expressed above are his own.