Into The Real World

By Anya Middleton

As she nears the end of college, Sterling Hopkins reflected on her experiences and her hopes for her future. Hopkins, a graduate of Columbia’s Dreher High School, ironically did not want to attend the University of South Carolina. Finances and circumstances drove her choice to stay in-state. Since starting at USC four years ago, Hopkins hasn’t regretted her decision.

The only thing she wishes she would have done differently would have been to take more time to enjoy what was going on around her and not be so consumed with working. So,  “You only live once,” has become her motto.  Hopkins says people should take all the opportunities they can to make memories and experience almost everything the world has to offer. There may come a time in life when one might regret that one didn’t, she says.

Hopkins says that the best way to experience the world is through spontaneity and travel. Since she has lived mostly in the same area, travel is something she looks forward to upon graduation. Although Hopkins hasn’t been many places yet, one of her fondest memories of college is when she randomly picked up and drove to Miami with some friends.

The excitement and nervousness ran through her veins as this was her first “adult” trip.  She realized her life had to change. She decided to capitalize on the experiences life had to offer. Since then, she has planned a trip to France after graduation and can’t wait to plan many more.

Hopkins hopes to establish a career in corporate communications and maybe one day even take her skills international. Completing college will be the greatest accomplishment of her life. As this semester nears a close and she embarks on the “real world” Hopkins reminds herself of this short poem, “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

Middleton is a public relations junior