If I could sum up my young adult life in one sentence, it would author J.R.R. Tolkien's famous "not all who wander are lost."

I wandered a lot during my time as a University of Pennsylvania student. I made mistakes that turned into memories. I found love that turned into heartbreak. I blindly pursued a profession (investment banking) before finding my passion (cartooning).


With school back in session, many alumni like myself are reminiscing about our college days. Others are just beginning their college journeys as freshmen, and some are seniors getting ready for one last hurrah.

These years are a time of breakthroughs and breakups. Success and stress. Wherever you may be on that journey, know that you’re not alone. These 14 cartoons sum up many of the life lessons we learn in college and as young adults.

1. There’s only one type of competition you should really worry about.

All illustrations by Jon Youshaei/Every Vowel, used with permission.

2. But don’t stress yourself out. Remember to ask for help.

3. Find friends who push you outside your comfort zone.

4. Finding real friends won’t always be easy…

5. …but it’s always worth it.

6. When it comes to romance, remember that it requires more effort than just swiping right.

7. It takes time to turn a relationship into something special.

8. Learn to have difficult conversations.

9. But try to empathize even when you disagree.

10. Chase your dreams. Not someone else’s.

11. When it comes to finding jobs, don’t be discouraged.

12. Because “no” is just another way of saying “not yet.”

13. You can only study so much. The best way to get experience is to just do it.

14. And keep at it. Success is closer than you realize.

Have a friend who could use this advice? Maybe share it with them.

You can find more of my work at EveryVowel.com.

Former President George W. Bush and current president Donald Trump may both be Republicans but they have contrasting views when it comes to immigration.

Trump has been one of the most anti-immigrant presidents of recent memory. His Administration separated undocumented families at the border, placed bans on travelers from majority-Muslim countries, and he's proudly proclaimed, "Our country is full."

George W. Bush's legacy on immigration is a bit more nuanced. He ended catch-and-release and called for heightened security at the U.S.-Mexico border, but he also championed an immigration bill that created a guest worker program and a pathway to citizenship for undocumented people.

Unfortunately, that bill did not pass.

Keep Reading Show less
Photo by Picsea on Unsplash
True

It is said that once you've seen something, you can't unsee it. This is exactly what is happening in America right now. We have collectively watched the pot of racial tension boil over after years of looking the other way, insisting that hot water doesn't exist, pretending not to notice the smoke billowing out from every direction.

Ignoring a problem doesn't make it go away—it prolongs resolution. There's a whole lot of harm to be remedied and damage to be repaired as a result of racial injustice, and it's up to all of us to figure out how to do that. Parents, in particular, are recognizing the importance of raising anti-racist children; if we are unable to completely eradicate racism, maybe the next generation will.

How can parents ensure that the next generation will actively refuse to perpetuate systems and behaviors embedded in racism? The most obvious answer is to model it. Take for example, professional tennis player Serena Williams and her husband, Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian.

Keep Reading Show less

I saw this poster today and I was going to just let it go, but then I kept feeling tugged to say something.

Melanie Cholish/Facebook

While this poster is great to bring attention to the issue of child trafficking, it is a "shocking" picture of a young girl tied up. It has that dark gritty feeling. I picture her in a basement tied to a dripping pipe.

While that sounds awful, it's important to know that trafficking children in the US is not all of that. I can't say it never is—I don't know. What I do know is most young trafficked children aren't sitting in a basement tied up. They have families, and someone—usually in their family—is trafficking them.

Keep Reading Show less

Roland Pollard and his 4-year-old daughter Jayden have been doing cheer and tumbling stunts together since Jayden could walk. When you see videos of their skills, the level of commitment is apparent—as is the supportive relationship this daddy has with his daughter.

Pollard, a former competitive cheerleader and cheer coach, told In The Know that he didn't expect Jayden to catch on to her flying skills at age 3, but she did. He said he never pressures her to perform stunts and that she enjoys it. And as a viral video of Jayden almost falling during a stunt shows, excelling at a skill requires good teaching—something Pollard appears to have mastered.

Keep Reading Show less