The Freshman Experience: Always Working
My roommate always jokes that I am constantly writing papers. Sometimes, I think she’s right. But I chose classes with papers on purpose—I hate studying for tests or doing problem sets. I would choose an essay over a quiz any day. And while I am glad I chose the classes I am taking, I have found that I always seem to be working…even on weekends.
This is the first time in my life where the amount of time spent in the classroom is significantly less than the amount of time doing work outside of class. Homework used to be a couple of hours a night, which seemed impossibly cruel after spending all my morning and most of my afternoon plunked in a desk at school. Now, class is brief and concise. There’s no taking attendance or explaining the homework. All we do is learn.
I like that I don’t have to spend unnecessary amounts of time doing absolutely nothing in class. But these short classes lead to another change from high school—lots and lots of out-of-class work. Although I have many more hours free than last year, I still feel as busy as ever. But almost two months into college, I think I’ve found my balance. The library has been my savior more than once on a Saturday when my friends and my cozy bed tried to beckon me away from my papers to write. Bringing my food up to my room to eat has given me an extra half an hour to read over a paper before it’s due. Most importantly, I’ve noticed that I have resources through peers and professors which I’ve never encountered before.
All in all, I know I may seem insanely busy to those around me. But there’s a difference between the busyness of this semester and my hectic, stress-filled days of high school. I am choosing these classes; I am choosing to write these essays on these topics; I am choosing to work harder than I would be if I were back home. For once in my academic life, I am busy learning, not busy doing useless assignments. So bring on the papers, I am ready to work.