Guest Post - The Final Quarter

We're pleased to bring you a bonus summer guest post from rising senior Kai Austin, 2015:

Well, my junior semester just ended. I have almost 20 literary agent rejection letters for my novel, so I decided to start straight up querying actual publishing companies. I had my first legitimate fever in over 8 years after finals. I just launched the beta for my startup, Wriget (, an organizational tool designed for writers to keep track of characters and their relationships. I am about to begin my summer internship down at eduCanon. And in the fall I will be starting SCOPE , self-publishing a book of poems/short stories, and teaching my second class at Olin on Mobile Development.

But right now there is only one thing on my mind. Watching graduation, it hit me - next year I will be a senior. A senior! I have still not even accepted the fact that I am a legal adult, and now I am in the final quarter of my undergrad life, about to be thrust out into the vast wide world? It's terrifying!

Part of me is looking back on my time at Olin in regret. All the things I did not do. I could have gotten more involved here. I could have been a better teammate there. Why did I not start that homework earlier? Why did I not wake up when I had the chance? Should have, could have, why, why not, and the whole dance of self-loathing memories can bring along. Then it is all comforted by the fact that hey, I'm not the biggest social butterfly out there. Health reasons, I've had to prioritize sleep. But between classes, clubs, random events of awesome, and my own world of writing, it sums down to one simple question: Am I doing enough?

Am I doing enough for Olin?

When I first found Olin existed, I was dead set on coming here. And it is not to say I do not know what other college types are like. I spent a year at a university with 27,000 students, almost every major you can imagine, a fast track to a graduate program, and an average class size of 250 students. It was honestly a great school! But Olin was the different I was looking for. Small school, check. Awesome people, check. Great scenery, check. Non-standard academics, check. Freedom and opportunity to pursue interests check. All round total epicness - that was not even on my list because I never thought a college like Olin could exist - check. Candidates Weekend, I wanted to tie myself to the columns outside the AC. Olin was the love of my life, my future, my every dream come true.

And now here I am, the summer before my senior year. Being all "adult-like" and hoping I sound like I understand what I am doing. That future is burning away into past memories. Memories I want more than anything to be worth it. Like a ticking clock, I am only becoming more frantic that my time here is running out.

 I do not know where this next year will take me. I do not know where I am going to end up after. I don't know if anyone will ever by my books, or if anyone will ever think my startup is worth it. I still am not entirely sure what I want to do with my life. And that scares me. Olin is my family. Olin is my home. It will always be my family and home. There is only one thing I know:


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