Tips for Starting Your (Successful) Semester

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The air is still warm and days are still long, but classes begin on Monday, believe it or not! If you are anything like me, you have already begun to prep for the next term by ordering books, thinking about parking, and have begun freaking out about assignments not yet posted. However, if you are not like me, then you may be enjoying your summer worry free! Whether you fall into either category, I have a few tips that can help you get ready for your return to campus whether that be physically or virtually: 

  1. You can never have too many face masks! For those who are going to be on campus: bring a mask. Have one in your car and an extra in your bag – oh, and don’t forget to have one on your face, covering your nose and mouth! There is a campus-wide, indoor mask mandate from President Washington that must be followed regardless of vaccination status. We wouldn’t want you to be turned away from a class or an appointment because you forgot a mask! 
  2. Plan to plan! Start putting your planner together now. Whether you prefer a printed or digital calendar, go ahead and jot down your assignments from your course syllabi and important dates and deadlines. These things sneak up on you fast! 
  3. Make studying a habit! Treat it like a job with a regular schedule. Don’t risk termination because you were a “No call, No show” to your own study session! 
  4. Grad students, touch base with your advisor and committee members! They’ve missed you and can’t wait to hear about your plans for productivity this semester. They can help you stay on schedule for completing courses, portfolios, dissertations, and theses. Plus, they are a valuable source for information on your industry so it can only help to have a good relationship with them! 
  5. Don’t forget to eat! Plan your meals and snack breaks in advance. “Hangry” isn’t cute or cool and buying out gets expensive. Get groceries and prepare meals ahead of time so you and your wallet can stay full. 
  6. Pencil in some personal time. You have to be well to do well! Schedule some downtime now so that you have something to look forward to when you’re feeling overwhelmed. It’ll help you stay on track during the tough times and experience less guilt when you finally do allow yourself to take a break.

These are just a few tips that can help make your transition a little smoother and lower the stress of coming to campus!

Stephen Vaughan

Stephen Vaughan is the Student Academic Success Coordinator for the College of Education and Human Development. Apart from working on CEHD student success, Stephen is a PhD student in the college and finds time to rock climb at a local gym.