fbpx En Route #32 — PCA

En Route #32



In movies, things usually end after the big finale and we all sit back and watch as the credits roll. Maybe that’s indeed what happens for some, but it doesn’t feel like I’ve done any sitting in the last 48-hours. After tasting sweet success at the final critique, things did quiet down as my peers and I were able to regain our bearings and batten down the hatches for the last hurdle: Graduation. It’ll come as no shock that these days were bliss to my weary soul, and I spent them frolicking around Paris, seeing friends and running errands before my family was set to arrive.

In my book, the biggest lesson you can learn from success is that it isn’t everything. Even when you achieve the thing you’ve always wanted, that euphoric kind of happiness doesn’t last forever. More than the luck of any one moment, the happiness that does last often comes from a deeper source of fulfillment. This week I’ll be graduating from Paris College of Art, tomorrow (editor’s note: today!) in fact. This is something we’ve been working towards for four years, and gosh does it feel pretty well earned. It’s funny how as life-long students we half believe school will never end, but of course it does and we’re left to ponder the great unknown that will greet us the moment we move our tassels to the left.

Honestly, this week has been such a whirlwind. I don’t think I’ll be able to fully process it until I actually do get to sit down for more than a couple of minutes. On one of my free days, a friend and I met up to take a walk along the Seine. It was the moment of calm just before the storm and already I know I’m going to miss these times most of all. I know it’s supposed to be an emotional thing, but it’s still so hard to believe that this much loved chapter of our lives is coming to a close. From the professors that have guided us to the peers who have stood with us through it all, I am so lucky to have laughed and learned with you these past 4 years.

For me, the most fun part of this week has to be getting to see everyone I know and love over the course of a three day manic marathon. It’s been such a joy to meet up with old and new friends and toast the end of a fabulous year. With my family arriving in the later part of the week, I did my best to spend the first part in quiet contemplation. Soaking in the solitude and stepping out here and there to set up for the exhibition or meet a friend. I did manage to stop by both graduate shows and was overcome by a wave of pride in all the work my peers have done.

I have the nail biting task of giving a little speech of my own at Graduation, which elevates this to new heights of nerve wracking as I drill my lines in the bathroom while my mom is fast asleep. It’s this last test of courage that makes me very aware that I will soon be a college graduate. Even if it still doesn’t quite feel real yet. Hopefully the next time you see me I’ll be popping a bottle of champagne and taking a big sigh of relief. All bets are off once we are released into the world, but I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little giddy at the prospect. We’ve earned a summer of blowing off steam, and above all, learning to navigate this new space. It’ll be fun, it’ll be slightly scary, but it’ll also be just what we need.

As I write this, my last entry, the night before graduation, I can already feel the tears coming on. I’ve said a lot of Thank you’s in the past 24-hours, but I would be remiss if I did not say one more to you, dear reader. Thank you for being my weekly confidant throughout this amazing, crazy, thrilling journey of Senior year. I’d always hoped to leave a little something behind for the next generation of students, so whether you’ve been here since the beginning or just starting your time at PCA I hope my words have been of some help as you carve your own path. In the meantime, I’m off to the next big adventure. Good luck, I’ll be cheering for you!


f t p