30 Thoughts We All Have During Our Graduation Ceremony

"I don't think I've ever clapped this much in my life. My hands hurt."

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This week, almost every one of us final year students graduated. One ceremony – one two-hour stretch ­­– is supposed to represent the monumental accomplishment of completing a degree. And guess what? Apart from a two-minute window when your name gets called, it is as boring as watching paint dry.

That gives you plenty of time in your own head to think a lot of thoughts. Here is just some of the stuff you would have been thinking during your ceremony.

#1 I feel like everyone else is rocking this academic gown better than me. Seriously, robes are making everyone else look smarter than they are.

#2 Oh no, this is probably the closest I’m ever going to get to feeling like I’m at the Hogwarts sorting ceremony.


#3 Will they pronounce my name right? Do other people getting called have weird names? Or is mine just boring?

#4 My back is cramping so much. This chair is torture. Maybe that’s the final (secret) test of your degree? If you can make it through the whole ceremony without complaining or collapsing, you can graduate.


#5 I’m so so hot, why is no one else reacting to this heat? Seriously I should have deferred a semester to graduate in winter.

#6 Why are some people getting so much applause? Did they bring a cheer squad? Make some noise Mum and Dad!


#7 I’m doing a lot more clapping than I’m used to right now. Are my hands red from applause? They’re tingling.

#8 This is the looooongest ceremony I’ve ever been to, why do people have so many middle names?!


#9 I should have had a coffee before this.

#10 I am not looking forward to facing the solemn wall of old white men conferring these degrees.


#11 Will I screw up the presentation on stage? Will I doff my hat at the wrong academic and exit the wrong way?

#12 Why are some people getting such niche degrees? This is ridiculous.


#13 None of today will be worth it if I don’t get a good Instagram out of it.

#14 Would anyone care if I crawled over to the water cooler?


#15 I’m so nervous, I would do anything to skip to the light refreshments part of the ceremony now.

#16 What should I eat after this? Should I take my parents to a really expensive restaurant just because I know they’ll pay for it?


#17 This ceremony gives you a really good idea of the most popular baby names in Australia circa 1996/1997 (cc: Grace, Elizabeth, Connor and Daniel).

#18 Who in their right mind would get a PHD? I wasn’t even motivated enough to consider honours!


#19 I’m so uncomfortable, why is it frowned upon to wear thongs to a graduation?

#20 Oh no they’re calling my name now. Should I have failed uni to avoid this day?


#21 Do my parents have a good view? Should they have just watched the live stream?

#22 I can’t believe I need to go to the bathroom right this second, this always happens.


#23 *walking up to receive degree* Oh my god I have the sweatiest palms in existence right now.

#24 They better not have spelled my name wrong on this very expensive piece of paper.


#25 I hope the guy giving everyone their degrees and shaking their hands used a lot of Dettol this morning.

#26 Am I about to catch a cold from coming into contact with a thousand handshakes? 


#27 *receives degree* Woo that feels great – wait, does that mean I’m not a student anymore?

#28 There goes my life of cheap movies, cheap Spotify and cheap public transport.


#29 So, I’m more qualified than ever, but I’m officially unemployed?


#30 Ah, whatever. School’s out, scream and shout!

Callum McDermott studies Arts at the University of Melbourne when he’s not drinking any coffee he can get his hands on.

(Lead image: Buffy The Vampire Slayer/Mutant Enemy Productions)