News - July 6, 2020

The past, the future and the certainty of summer

Donatella Gasparro

I’m technically ready to say goodbye to my WUR account and all related platforms. Technically.

©Guy Ackermans & Shutterstock

Backup OneDrive: √. Backup Outlook: √. Download material from the good old Blackboard: √. Bring books to the library: √. Bring back WUR laptop: √. I’m technically ready to say goodbye to my WUR account and all related platforms. A small ritual for a big change towards new adventures yet to discover. But first: well-deserved holidays.

After graduating in March, I jumped right into helping out WUR teachers transition to online education as a teaching assistant. This was a great opportunity to contribute to making courses online smooth and bearable for everyone, to keep busy during the long months of lockdown and to become a video call platforms expert. But, the end of the academic year is here, courses came to an end and so did my short contract – and with it all WUR-related accounts. It’s been a tough process to accept the separation from my beloved WUR email. Still, I figured I would survive, and checking two inboxes instead of three could actually be not that bad.

As a good recent graduate, while working full-time in my fixed-term position, I was also spending quite some time searching for - and casually applying to – jobs. First clearly because I’m looking for one, but also a bit as an exercise, and as a placebo to calm down my incapacity to deal with uncertainty.

The race for a decently-paid entry-level job is quite overwhelmingly unpleasant

Looking for jobs is not fun. Well, it can be, I kind of make it fun – especially when I find offers in random cities in random countries and even before applying I am searching for houses. Besides the very brief excitement that comes with any novelty, the race for a decently-paid entry-level job is quite overwhelmingly unpleasant, with most openings asking for young people with 5 years of experience and requiring both amazing quantitative skills and communication skills, to mention just a couple.

What’s next
In my unjustified personal rush to find something for ‘afterwards’, I ended up filling sticky notes with lists of vacancies to apply to, until I looked at them closer and figured that 8 out of 10 were not even something I would actually enjoy doing. And so I stopped and decided that planning outdoors, artsy, nature-filled summer months was a healthier decision.

So, you may wonder, what’s next?
Short answer: summer. Long answer: it’ll come in bits and pieces in my upcoming blogs…

Donatella Gasparro graduated recently as a master’s student in Organic Agriculture. The coming months she will take us through her search for a life after WUR. Donatella hails from Italy.