Last weekend, a high schooler I work with asked me when I graduated from college. I told her 2012.
"Wow! That was soooo long ago," she said, without a gleam of sarcasm.
Was it? As I processed that it has been almost four years since I was last a student -- in the formal sense at least -- it seemed hard to believe for a moment. My days of late nights in the library, marathons of student org meetings, and, of course, happy hours and frat parties, however, seem exceedingly far behind me.
Still, as a young professional, I find myself reflecting on college and school in general quite often. As I wrapped up my conversation with this student, I started to think about what I learned in college, both within and beyond the classroom.
This also led me to think of all of the things that I wish I had learned, but never learned in any level of school. There are many professional and life skills more beneficial in our daily lives than physics and calculus, which I think I managed to never take nonetheless, but that is beside the point.
The skills that 20-somethings need to know go beyond what is conveyed in textbooks. Although I am fairly confident this is something every Millennial who enjoys crafting prose has touched upon at some point, I am beyond confident that it's still all too relevant, which is why I present to you my list of top 10 things I wish were taught in school.
Disclaimer: Although I am fully capable of doing some of these things (Microsoft Office is my everything -- is that weird to say? Probably.), please know that if anyone asked me to do my taxes alone or change a tire, I would be more lost than Nemo.
1. How to do your taxes
2. How to change a tire
3. How to jump a car
4. How to make an effective budget
5. How to use Microsoft Office
6. How to effectively manage stress
7. How to unplug/disconnect from technology
8. How to understand insurance policies (yes -- all kinds, people need to know more)
9. How to invest your money
10. How to hang a picture without damaging the wall
I could probably go on for pages on things that I wish I would've learned in school, but I will leave you with this. Life skills are just as important as academic knowledge, and let's hope the next generation can collectively become more functioning adults. Until then, I am off to Google picture-hanging techniques or something like that.