All too often my fellow students and I rush through classes with one goal: make it to the end of the semester. Semester after semester we push through, until we finally reach that pinnacle point: graduation. But what happens to the in-between? After all, isn’t the point of college to prepare us for the career world? Wasn’t that why we slaved over research papers and stayed up all night cramming for the big final? Don’t forget those fabulous group projects that always seemed to come together just in the nick of time. So do classes really matter? As midterms approach, I’m tempted to say, “No way, I’m graduating soon, so who cares!” But what if we tried to do more than just barely wade through the material day after day? What if we took a proactive approach to our semester and actually tried to get our money’s worth? I think this is how we could do it…
- We could actually appreciate our class schedules! Yes, that’s right. Trust me, I’ve had many unfortunate schedules throughout my college career, but I still think we ought to take a step back and enjoy them. Think about it, who else gets to spend three or four hours per day in a classroom, then gets to roam free for the remainder of the time? So how do we hang out with our friends, get enough sleep, and complete our assignments before the next day of classes? We learn TIME MANAGEMENT, before we have a full-time job and actually need it.
- Don’t forget the SKILLS we are learning in our classes! We may not ever need to know which president was the first to live in the White House (it was President John Adams), but we will need to use the skills we learn in our everyday lives. Knowing how to conduct research, synthesize large amounts of information, write concisely, and communicate effectively will all be necessary for success in our careers. So why don’t we try to learn now?
- We can PRACTICE with our professors! How will we interact professionally in an interview? Have we learned to network well at social events? Do we know how to draft a professional email? Professors are here to help! We have access to office hours every week, they (almost) always reply to our emails – no matter how poorly drafted they are, – and we interact with them two or three times a week during class. Let’s use this time to gain valuable experience interacting professionally.
- Next, we can NETWORK with our fellow students! One day they’ll be our professional peers. We share a common bond as UD students, so it’s a perfect time to develop friendships and acquaintances with those who we will be sharing a job market with very soon.
- Oh, and don’t forget, the semester is about FUN too! We need should take time for ourselves, figure out our likes and dislikes, discover a few hobbies, and volunteer in our community. It’s the perfect environment to develop lifelong friendships. So if we are willing to put in the effort, I think we just might learn a few things along the way!
By: Rachel Thompson