‘Back to grind’, sighed two college students on their last night before school re-opened that fall. It would be back to books, classes, assignments and may be even punishments for them and for so many other students who were returning to school. Lest we forget, and also for those freshman year students who were just going to start off with, for what might be still uncharted territories, the campus-life.
How many of us can relate to this aforesaid scenario? Haven’t we all been in this situation before? And some of us may still be at this crucial juncture. The times that we spend in college are eternally etched in our lives. So why not we do the best we can to create memories, moments and events that we can fondly reminiscent long after we’ve graduated. Given that, we’ve no or minimal control over most situations in our lives, there are some basic yet comprehensive steps that we can take that may guide us towards the “right direction”; and sometimes, just sometimes, even take us right to our destination!
So whether the semester has already commenced or not, whether you’re making headway towards your goals or you’re finding yourself in choppy waters, here are some of suggestions that may help you to steer your boat through high seas and low tides of what has always been, a roller-coaster campus-life.
1. Set a routine
It’s not as hard as it sounds, I promise. Fine, a tad arduous but definitely rewarding. It may be something as elementary as simply making your own bed immediately after waking up in the morning. One may say that it’s nothing so spectacular that could be added to a resume but it certainly is the first step to creating a solid one, going forward. Setting a routine will only give a boost to all of your succeeding tasks as you can get done with mundane tasks at lightning speed; clearing up the rest of your day to take on more important tasks.
2. Source books, notes, lectures materials early on
You can still manage to get a grade, probably, a C or a C+ by pulling an all-nighter the night before your exams. But how are you going to pull one off if you don’t have the study materials in place? It’s always beneficial to read through the syllabus in advance and raid the library before all those books are gone.
3. Mix-and-mingle with peers at school and outside
Your classmates are the best support system you’re ever going to get. Period. So collaborate and join forces to create your own support system. Try finding find common interests or even better, try finding mutual disinclinations; there’s no bond stronger than when two students jointly despise the same class. By partnering classmates, one is able to learn new skills from one another. And no sooner than later, what might have seemed like a tough class turns out to be a walk in the park.
4. Leverage campus resources
Students tend to overlook plenty of resources that are made available for students at school; ranging from curriculum based extra classes to clubs for fashion, sports, movies and tech. Students are encouraged to give these a try if not become members; for these play a key role in meeting students from different departments and learning about various on-campus and off-campus activities.
One the key aspects of making the semester worthwhile is to volunteer. It may be doing a task as plain as scooping ice-cream at a local festival to something more wide in scope like cleaning gardens or painting the walls of neighboring communities. This is really a trump card that students can use going forward in the semester. By volunteering, one gets to learn about aspects like bridging the community-college gap and creating an all-encompassing environment as well.
6. Take break, time-out and relax
Juggling classes, socializing and volunteering is sure going to overwhelm students. So, it’s imperative to take that much needed break from all these activities and let your hair down. Do things that make you happy. Anything, really!
7. Keep working on that personal brand
The laundry list of things above are mere suggestions. However, what’s most important is your unique, awesome personality that you and you alone can shape, nurture and enhance. Take classes or not, volunteer or not, connect with peers or not; your personal brand is that aspect of your personality that you wish to tap on which will open all doors of opportunity for you and widen your horizon. So take a look within yourself and ask what is it that you really want to achieve in this semester and pave your path to accomplish your objectives.
One may or may not get the best start to the semester but what is important is to finish strong. With this goal in mind, reach out to your peers, classmates and community today and experience the many possibilities that the semester will offer you.