How to Make the Most of Returning to Campus

By Laura Aviles, Staff Writer

A month out of school could mean a number of different things: a recharge of energy, positivity from reuniting with family and friends, a trip to remember, or even just some simple rest and relaxation. No matter what you did over the holidays though, the immediate changes in routine and hours has the potential to feel like a bucket of cold water to the face. One of our professors said this week: “I bet you are looking at your workload for the semester wondering how you are going to be able to complete all of this right now.” It’s natural to be stressed out right now, but it’s also exciting because you get to see all of your old friends and start anew with school.

T-birds love to travel, and the excitement of seeing new places or returning home over the break can result in mixed emotions. For me, returning home after being on campus for the last 8 months was a dream come true. But then again, there were also moments that the nostalgia of being back on campus along with everything that it involves (friends, classes, Thursday at the pub, etc.) came right back to me. After seeing all of my friends since moving back into the dorms, it’s easy to see that I wasn’t the only one excited about returning to Thunderbird.

Nevertheless, it’s also true that by the second week of January most people have given up on their New Year’s resolutions. The intentions drawn up on paper are always so much more daunting when you actually have to take action. So in order to keep on with the motivation of a new year, here are some suggestions that I found interesting to not feel down and to start classes with both feet pointed forward.

Write down your resolutions: The best way is to write it down on a paper. Put it in a timeframe. Leave youcomputer-1295358_960_720r mark and sign it. It will help you later to review and compare, and will also keep you accountable.

Prepare a schedule: Google calendar is one of the best tools to organize daily tasks as it is connected to Gmail, which makes it very practical. Make sure to mark everything down from class syllabi onto your calendar: classes time, midterm exams, final exams, quizzes, info sessions and networking events. Leave some time (per the amount of task) to study each week. Also, take at least 1 hour each day to review the class and another hour to complete assignments. Don’t leave everything for the last minute.

Make a group support pact: Teamwork doesn’t have to be used only for group projects. Rely on some friends who share the same schedules and study habits. Divide activities, but at the same time share different points of view to produce results. As many current T-birds say: collaborate to graduate!

Recognize your environment: Where to study? Which places are available on campus? Library, Snell rooms, the Tower, study rooms at the Yount building, CMC study rooms, A-lounge, B-lounge. There are an abundance of different options.

Leave some time for extra activities: Just as important as study time is relaxation and fun time. Hobbies and exercises are essential to keeping a clear mind and alleviating stress. Also, leave some time to spend with friends and explore the city together by doing activities like hiking, skiing, dancing. Also, Mexico is never too far away…

The last thing to remember is that the key to any performance is to receive feedback. Take out your resolution paper and review it. A self-analysis every 2 months of the goals achieved and the ones to try harder on could become essential in recognizing what to improve and how to best go about doing so. With positive thoughts come positive outcomes.

Feature photo courtesy of: Hayk’

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