Here’s some helpful tidbits to make the transition from summer go much more smoothly.
By: Clara Perez
Summer is almost over and we’re all already feeling the separation anxiety, but these pre-semester prep tips may help make the transition more tolerable.
As much as we don’t want to accept that our summer vacations are over and the stress of school is looming on the horizon, we must. The first step in preparing for the semester is accepting that you are going to be stressed out and there will plenty of assignments to do and deadlines to meet. However, each semester poses the chance to grow personally and academically, which is always a win!
#2- Get Organized
You may not have your syllabus yet but that doesn’t mean you can’t get ahead of important dates. The academic calendar for the semester is available on the CSI website and serves as your first line of defense. Make sure you write down dates for breaks, campus closures, midterm/final weeks and days of the week that follow different day schedules. This gives you the chance to plan ahead for study time and maybe a much needed winter break vacation.
#3- Order Supplies
Also available prior to the start of the semester is a listing of your course textbooks and supplemental materials. Order them now to avoid them selling out online and to avoid book store pricing. There are a bunch of resources for online book purchases and rentals including campusbookrentals.com, chegg.com, amazon.com and textbookrentals.com. Don’t get swept up in only ordering textbooks and other literature. Make sure to buy your everyday school supplies from pens to printer ink, and don’t forget the color-coded index cards for study group!
#4- Get on Schedule
Although there will still be late nights, only now paired with early mornings, getting back on a schedule that will help you through your school day is vital to a successful semester. Know your class schedule and what it will mean for the timing of other activities throughout your day and week. Make sure you know when you’ll make time to travel to and from campus, eat a real meal, get involved in extracurricular activities, keep your social life, exercise, and of course, rest. Reducing the stress associated with a rushed or inefficient schedule will help to make your days feel shorter and more productive in the long run.
#5- Set Goals
Setting realistic goals, whether for your classes or for yourself, is a good way to keep your semester stress at ease. Using goals as a way to get through your semester step by step can be a fun and fulfilling way to stay organized and never miss a deadline. For each small goal you set, you should also choose a reward for yourself after your reach that goal. Whether it’s a small treat or a shopping spree, rewards are just important as the goals! This will keep you motivated and keep you feeling on top of your work and life.
#6- Don’t Get Caught Up
With the semester starting again, old friends and old habits may find themselves consuming you once more. Don’t give in! Do not get caught up in hanging out, partying or general laziness. This will cause you to fall behind on studying which can lead to many missed goals and even more tragic- no personal rewards. Don’t allow yourself to lose your groove once you’ve started out the semester strongly and with a set plan in motion. That will only lead to self-disappointment and will make your semester feel longer and more painstaking than it has to be.
Remember that whether this is your first semester or your last, you are capable of totally nailing it! While school is important, it is also important to take care of yourself and to make the time to give yourself a pat on the back every now and then for all of your effort. Remember that you are in school to forge a path for yourself and your future career goals and that nothing can stand in your way but you! Good luck!