What Pitch Perfect 2 Taught Us About Life After College

By Chelsea Tyson

It’s summer! The season full of family vacations, watermelons and graduation parties. Yes, graduation season is here and if you’re a senior in high school, the anticipation for what’s next is almost unbearable, but there’s a lot about being a senior in college that no one really warns you about. That is, until “Pitch Perfect 2” was released. Along with funny jokes, guest appearances and “aca-amazing” performances, “Pitch Perfect 2” captured a real-life, unedited glimpse of all the crazy emotions college graduates face. Here’s a few of the lessons “Pitch Perfect 2” revealed about life in the “real world.”

Never Underestimate an Internship

You may not get Keegan-Michael Key as your supervisor, but there are many aspects of Beca’s (Anna Kendrick) internship experience that reflect the ups and downs of being an intern. When Beca comes back from interning, one of the first things she has to say about it is that it was “eye-opening.”

Up until our first internship, the only understanding we have about our future careers is based mostly on our high expectations and daydreams, which is why internships are probably one of life’s biggest doses of reality. Not only does it give you a glimpse of what life in the workplace is like, but it can also reveal a lot about yourself that you didn’t know before—especially your weaknesses.

Going into your internship may be intimidating, but there’s something inside you that feels like you at least kind of have it all together. I mean, you got accepted for the internship so that has to show for something, right? Then you find yourself surrounded by equally (and possibly more) talented people and you realize you aren’t the only one with that dynamic combination of passion and drive for your vocation. No doubt, that’s a humbling experience, but thankfully, that’s all a part of the process and it doesn’t determine how valuable or successful your time as an intern is. You might not land the dream internship, or you might get the exact internship you hoped for only to find that it is nothing like what you expected.

Then you learn the next thing “Pitch Perfect 2” taught us…

Initiative is Key

So you got knocked off of your high horse. It happens. Even Beca realized that she wasn’t the only one who knew how to make catchy mash-ups. Truth is, we all have some things we really excel at, and sometimes, just being good at something is not going to be enough. Thankfully though, that’s not the end of the story. A bad internship experience can be completely changed through proposing new ideas and trying again. Even when your ideas are critiqued to a pulp and thrown back at you, there is so much potential to turn your experience around. Whether it be at an internship or in class, ultimately, as cliche as this may sound, it comes down to what you make of it. There will be challenging and humbling times. Those are unavoidable, but after you’ve had your pity party and a good cry, finish up that pint of ice cream and figure out how you’re going to move forward because ultimately, your internship, success and future career is what you make of it.

You Never Know Where Your Passions Are Going to Take You

Millennials are known for wanting to land a perfect first job that not only pays the bills, but also makes going to work everyday exciting and, dare I say, FUN! That might sound a little idealistic, and truth is, you might not get that job that you expected. That’s a scary thought and it’s easy to get stressed out over that, but sometimes, our innate passions, desires and wants can help determine what that right job is.

*Spoiler alert*

When the Barden Bellas go for a retreat, they get to catch up with Aubrey (Anna Camp) who now runs a leadership/team building camp. As obsessed as she was with a cappella in the first movie, you’d think she’d want to end up in a job that has something to do with singing, but there was another, stronger passion she had—commanding people.

Life is interesting and unpredictable like that, and sometimes it can be scary, but more than that, it’s exciting. Everyone has unique strengths and talents and even weaknesses that equip us for the job that we might not even know exists yet, but if you embrace those qualities that make you unique, you might be pleasantly surprised to see where it gets you. That’s the funny thing about life and planning for the future. Sometimes, our “perfect job” is something that we haven’t or couldn’t have thought up on our own, but it fits us so well.

Never Underestimate Community

It’s easy to get wrapped up in thinking about the future, but it shouldn’t distract from the relationships and community around us right now. Career paths change, but relationships can last through all those ups and downs in life. As all the Barden Bellas are gathered around the campfire, they realize that no matter where life takes them, the memories (both good and bad times) are what they hold on to most. As you’re reading this, a few people are probably popping up in your mind. Yes, initiative and internships are important for launching your life after college, but if you’re going to focus on anything, focus on fostering those relationships. Those people who will be your strong pillars when the job falls through, when you make a big mistake, when you just need a shoulder to cry on because jobs (even the perfect ones) can come and go, but those people in your life have the potential to be there through it all.

If You’re Scared… It’s OK

Even with the excitement about being completely done with school, graduating is scary. For as long as we can remember, we’ve been living one semester to the next just hoping to pass and get to the next grade…but what happens when there isn’t another semester awaiting us at the end of the summer? Will we land the dream job? Will we find a place to live? All of a sudden, the reality of the responsibilities thrown at us twenty-somethings hits us hard, but it’s okay because you’re not the only one. I’m trying not to spoil the movie for those of you who haven’t watched it, but if you’re getting closer to graduating college and entering the “real world,” this movie is for you.

So, if you’re having a quarter-life crisis or whatever you call that feeling of extreme panic that comes with thinking about life after school, go to the movies, watch “Pitch Perfect 2” and take a deep breath because you’re not alone. Thankfully, we’ll only have to wait a year until “Pitch Perfect 3” comes out in July 2017 and hopefully teaches us a little bit about how to be adults.


About Chelsea

Chelsea TysonChelsea Tyson is an aspiring journalist and full-time, online student at Regent University. She believes that everyone has a story to tell and every experience has a lesson to be learned. Discovering those hidden stories and lessons is what drives her on her “journey to journalism,” which she blogs about at chelseatyson.wordpress.com. You can follow her on Twitter @chelseatyson.

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