Getting back on track
By Stephanie Bernhardt, First Scholar recipient
A challenging part of college that no one ever really warns you about is getting back on track when your semester seems to be going in a downward spiral about a month or two in.
I’m in my second semester of my junior year, so I’ve unfortunately had my fair share of experiences with this.
The good news? I think I have a few useful tips for you now.
Keep a close eye on your grades all semester long
I went from checking my grades every few weeks to just about every single day. When you become aware of how significantly every assignment, attendance, exam, etc. affects your grade — it’s easy to not let those points slip away.
Get organized and stay organized
I definitely learned this one the hard way. During my first year of college I filled out my planner neatly and consistently for a few weeks and then ultimately gave up on it. I must have thought I was invincible and could remember assignment deadlines and exam dates for five different classes every single week.
News flash; it’s not possible!
I was constantly remembering things either once it was too late or just the night before with little to no time to prepare myself for it and this really hurt my grades in the long run that year.
Meet with your professors
I was stubborn at first and never wanted to visit my professors’ office hours. I was a shy and intimidated freshman — could you blame me?
However, it made such a difference when I finally did. The professor learned my name, noticed the effort I was putting into the class, and truly wanted to see me succeed.
This semester, specifically, has been a busy one. I finally made it into Dr. Holt’s office hours the week before my midterm exam and she helped me so much! That’s what they are there for and I can promise, from my own experiences, it is so well worth it.
Don’t give up
As I mentioned in my previous tip, it has been one crazy busy semester for me. I am taking 15 credits and am now working a second job. I’m not here to tell you that you need to overload yourself to this extent but I can definitely relate with anyone who feels like they’re on the verge of giving up.
Don’t do it! You’ve got this. Call your mom and dad, or your best friend.
Cry it out if you need to.
But how rewarding will it feel to someday say, “I did it”?
Here’s to you and here’s to finishing up #NAUStrong
Stephanie is currently a junior studying exercise science, hoping to one day attend Physical Therapy school. She loves hiking with her dog, camping, country music, long drives, and the outdoors.
Originally published at First Scholars blog.