Think of it as a whole new level of Werewolf on Telegram. You’re a lowly villager whose life has been dedicated to being industrious and hardworking, yet you’re vulnerable to wolves who can devour you within seconds. Parallel to the game, there are a number of possible real-life scenarios which can occur once you graduate from the University and step into the real world in search of that elusive first job. Either you become so consumed by your responsibilities and stress, or you win the game, while keeping your humble character. The questions remains: How does one become a victor of the hunt? Witness the journey of the following DLSU graduates, who have experienced both highs and lows in order to reach their aspirations.

For fresh grads who have recently taken the plunge and are on the hunt for employment, time will tell whether they sink or swim. Some students in their final years of studying dread this part of young adulthood, which many consider the gatekeeper to their independence. This first job is the first step towards financial independence from their parents. However, this is not always the case.

Sink or Swim - Cherrise Yao []

John* is a fresh grad who had been groomed since he was a child as the rightful heir to the family business. As the eldest child, he is recognized as the successor of his father, while the burden of running the business has always been on his shoulders. He is currently working long hours, but without a single cent. “I’ve been working for our company unofficially since my third year of college and now that I’ve graduated, I haven’t yet negotiated my salary, which is an awkward conversation amongst family,” he shares. However, John admits that his passion does not lay in the family business, but with cars instead, where he hopes to one day branch out and open a business of his own within the specific field. For those still experiencing the hectic university life, John advises that you might not always find your dream job fresh out of college. As long as individuals keep working towards their end goal, however, there is no reason to feel disheartened by the jobs that were only settled for in the beginning.

Passion is not much of an issue for people like Applied Economics and Finance major and alumnus, Aldo. In his scenario, he had been eyeing a position in the banking industry since the earlier stages of his life. Driven by his determination to fulfill his dreams, he rounded up a few interviews by his remaining days in the University, which is a testament to his strength and courage to continue his restless pursuit. While he admits that he encountered mentally draining interviews, he concludes that the time he dedicated for them produced worthwhile efforts. Aldo claims, “Luckily, the right opportunity came at the right time.” Aldo is currently working as an assistant fund manager in Banco De Oro’s Trust department.

For those who find themselves amidst a fork in the road, Clarizze advises, “Do not be afraid to take risks.” The American Studies alumna graduated in 2014. She is one of the fortunate few who have been recommended by their professors to employers within their specific field. However, in spite of the opportunity, she eventually left her first job, realizing that she had other visions that did not match to that of the corporation. Clarizze assures undergraduates that such situations are bound to happen, and that it is a completely normal occurrence, especially in the hefty process of soul searching. Nonetheless, the alumna insists to “test the waters first.”

Sink or Swim - Martin San Diego []

On the same note, Clarizze recommends not to dive in right away. Financial stability is an important factor of sustainability, even more so for those who have their entire lives planned out. But it’s also important to consider that, at a stage where we begin to rediscover our purpose according to our own ideals, a high pay is not equivalent to a highway of resolving all personal yearnings. Sometimes, the job most suitable for us is the one that gives us clarity, like Clarizze, who found what she wanted by being of service to others.

If you have constantly doubted yourself, thinking you might not be able to make it out in the concrete jungle, you’re not the only one who has faced this problem. Migs, who graduated with a degree in American Studies earlier on in the year, was hesitant about facing the real world. But before he knew it, he was hired before even graduating. “Take your time and relax. But don’t take too much time!” he advises.

Choosing and considering what might be the basis of the future can be rather tricky, but focusing on what you truly need could be the solution. If you want to survive the vast oceans of reality, it might be all about climbing aboard on the right ships.

*Names with asterisks (*) are pseudonyms.

Alexis Sobremonte

By Alexis Sobremonte

Jaime Papa

By Jaime Papa

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