Archive by Author

6 Things I Wish I Heard Going into Sophomore Year

24 Jul
  1. It is Okay to Change Your Major or Change it Again
    I want to stress that it is okay if you’re still not certain which path is best for you because you are still in your second year. There is time to explore your options to make yourself happy in the long run. Even if you change your major 20 times, it is best that you find what is the right path to take to get you to your future career. I started school as and Architecture major and I thought that was where I was going to stay for the rest of my college career. Unfortunately, at the time, I couldn’t handle the rigorous course work that was put on my plate and I decided the major I had picked was not a good fit for me. After this, I decided to try business as a major and that fell through as well in my sophomore year. My heart was not in business school, so again, I was at the beginning of searching for a major. After a lot of consideration and talking to advisors, I found my fit as an Art major. This was the best decision that I made during my college career because it was what made me the happiest.

  2. Your Advisor is Your Best Friend
    I know that literally everyone at the U of A stresses this, but it is very useful so I’m going to stress it again. Whether it is your major’s advisor or a potential major’s advisor, they can offer you the best help when exploring majors or picking the correct courses to take to obtain your degree. Along with this, they can help you if you have any questions about your major, future jobs, or graduate school (if that’s where you want to go). I make it a habit to see my advisor at least twice a year just to make sure that I am on the right track to graduate as well as speak to her about what I have been experiencing in my courses.

  3. Ask for Advice
    This goes a little bit further into talking to your advisor. Do not be afraid to ask them questions about their past schooling or about other students’ experiences. Also, utilize students that are in upper division courses, supervisors, or even other students in your classes to ask questions to about their college experience, past classes they have taken, and even their future plans. You can learn so much by the people that you interact with every day if you start a simple conversation. Also, most likely you will make a new friend at the same time! I always ask my professors, supervisors, and other classmates for advice and they help me out a ton!

  4. Life Happens
    Not everything in college is going to be easy and you may have already experienced that in your first year on campus. You have to always keep in mind that you have a life outside of school and sometimes that requires you to turn your focus on outside situations. My sophomore year of college was difficult because I was going through family issues while trying to balance school and it’s hard. The best advice that I can give is to be upfront about what is going on in your personal life if it ever affects your classes. It may require some documentation, but professors are humans too. They will understand if you are going through something hard and cannot completely focus on assignments. They may offer you support as well as an extension on assignments if it is necessary for you.

  5. Embrace Change
    Throughout your college career, you are going to change no matter what. You may find yourself spending time with people you haven’t before and not spending time with others that you used to. You also could find that your values may shift as you start learning more about the world and yourself. That’s perfectly fine and a good thing! You learn so much when you’re in college and you will be a lot different than when you were straight out of high school or after your first year. It’s better to accept the fact that you’re growing and go along with it rather than trying to stay the same person you once were. I changed a lot during my second year due to the amount of classwork as well as my friend circle. Instead of spending time with old friends of high school, I started immersing myself in others that had the same major as I did. It wasn’t a bad thing, it was just different and I had to adjust myself to the dramatic change.

  6. Start Thinking About What Happens After College
    As I sit here as a Senior, I wish that I spent more time thinking about what I am going to do after college than solely focusing on what I had to do at the time. It is never too early to discover what you want to do after college whether you go straight into a job or look into graduate school options. Take the time that you have to try to look ahead to see where you want to be in the next five years or where you don’t want to be. All of the time you spend doing this will be helpful in the end when you get to your last year.

I hope this list helps you start thinking about the things you will experience in the upcoming years of college. All in all, everything that you do matters to your future and never forget that. As I look back on my years as a wildcat, I know that these things would have helped me tremendously on my journey.

Courtney (:

Bad Summer Habits to Kick

7 Jul

Summertime is when I am so relaxed that it turns into me being as unproductive as possible. Obviously, with us being the middle of July already, this can only fly for a little bit longer. If you have found yourself forgetting that the school year is around the corner, similar to how I am, we have both fallen into bad summer habits! Fortunately for us, there is still time to change those bad habits to good ones before school season is upon us. I have compiled a list of some habits that I’ve found myself in lately and if you are in the same place as I am, I have also put ways to change our lazy summer ways!

1. Staying up until the sun rises mornings GIFThis is something that I have started to fall into. With time off, what is better than staying up late and getting up in the afternoon because there are no plans the next day? Honestly, nothing. There are so many nights I spend browsing the Internet, watching a TV show, or talking all night with my favorite people. This is virtually impossible with 8am’s every day of the week and the endless amount of homework when school hits. I am not saying that you should start eating dinner at 4pm and going to bed at 7pm, but try to pick out a few days out of the week that you start going back to your normal sleep schedule. I have found it helpful by trying to go to sleep an hour earlier than your summer self does. If this doesn’t work, start doing more physical activity to tire yourself out a bit during your day. This will slowly change your sleep schedule back to the way it once was.

2. Forgetting what day of the week it is
 today marc maron maron dave foley what day is it GIF

There is no denying that I forget what day of the week it is. I’ll swear its Monday and, oops, it’s actually Thursday. I know this is pretty bad, but without the repetitive schedule of classes and the need to know what day it is, my brain just forgets even though it’s always displayed on my phone. If this seems like you, start planning out your days a little more. Even if it something simple like: I plan to clean my room on Monday, go out to lunch on Wednesday, and visit my grandmother on Saturday, this will help your mind wrap around what day it is because you have something planned. Another thing that I am planning to do is buy a large whiteboard calendar for my house and fill it in with important things, like when rent is due, along with fun things, like when I am going to camping. This will make you start to be aware of where we are in the month and how soon school is creeping up so it won’t take you by surprise.

3. Ignoring your U of A email email GIF
This is probably one of my favorite things that I get to do over the summer, but it also sometimes gets me in trouble. For example, forgetting to renew my parking permit. It’s best to keep checking your U of A email even when you are on vacation because it will update you on your finances, notices and holds on your UAccess account, and give you reminders of things that you need to do before the school year starts. Especially with the first week of classes slowly approaching, it is better to get back in the habit now, before you miss something important regards to next semester’s classes. If you feel very ambitious, get rid of some of your old emails and organize your inbox so your email will filter email based on primary emails, social emails, and promotional emails. This will help free up your inbox and also make it so you get all of the important ones rather than be cluttered with many emails at once.

4. Living in last school year’s pigsty
 messy room hiding clutter frantic kid GIF

Trust me, when summer hits I literally try to do the bare minimum for everything, including cleaning! I am still finding old notes scattered in my backpack and books in my car along with a jacket from last winter. Based on the appearance of my house and car, it still looks like I am living in spring semester. If you are in the same boat as I am, take time to clean and organize a bit before the school year starts. You may be surprised what school supplies you may find that you can reuse for next semester or books that you may be able to sell and you can save a bit of money (bonus, right?)! Another thing that can be helpful is to go through your closet. Pick out the clothes that you haven’t worn all year or are getting a little worn out. This will not only open up closet space, but it’s an opportunity to update your wardrobe (my favorite part). Organization is an important part for having a good start of the year, so it’s better to start cleaning now when you still have a large amount of free time.

5. Being in denial about school starting denial GIF
Even though we all wish it were true, summer cannot last forever. The upcoming year is approaching quickly and it is better to keep that in mind during the last weeks of summer, than have it creep up on you last minute. Try to implement a few things now, so you can be prepared to take on the new school year. It is very nice to have a break and be able to do whatever you want without the stress of homework and upcoming tests, but focus on the things you’re excited about coming back to school. You will get to see your friends that you have missed over the summer, come back to the beautiful U of A campus, and learn new things about yourself and your future career. Embrace the fact that you are in college and doing great things to better yourself and your future!

I know it may be a little soon to start prepping for fall semester, but it will make things easier on your for when the school year starts. Still enjoy your summer lazy days and take advantage of your time off. Spend time with family, binge watch Netflix a bit, but still think about the upcoming year and on things that you have to get done. One thing that will definitely help is turning your bad habits into good ones. Obviously, this won’t change overnight, but start with one thing at a time! wink kristen bell veronica mars finger guns you got this GIF

Courtney (:

Our Summer Movie List

23 Jun

Courtney’s Choice                              Shannon’s Selection



















Movie Series


Let us know some of your top movie choices to watch this summer! 🙂 
-Courtney and Shannon

Summer Goals for Online Summer Classes

9 Jun

Summer classes can be stressful because they are very fast paced and you have just given your all during the fall and spring semesters.  At this point, you may lack a little motivation, sort of how I am feeling! This is my third summer at the U of A taking summer courses and trust me, it is worth it, but it also is a little bit of a struggle getting to the end. I have put together a few goals of mine for my summer classes, along with some tips for you if you are or will be enrolled in courses this summer.

  1. Read the book fully.
    Let’s all be honest: We have all cut corners while reading a course’ textbook and unfortunately this doesn’t work when you’re enrolled in a summer course because that is where the majority of the learning is done. The instructor’s, of all of my previous courses, rarely put together lectures to post on D2L and fully rely on the students to read then ask and answer discussion questions. My goal for all three of my summer courses is to read the textbook so I can set myself up for success. I am going to give myself two days to read each chapter and to have time to answer questions if I need to.
  2. Start assignments, readings, papers early.
    In a summer course, the instructor usually gives their students access to upcoming assignments early on in the course. Instead of waiting until last minute to start my assignments, I want to get ahead so I can spend more time on my projects and not stress because of a time crunch. I will use the same technique with my reading to start long assignments a few days in advance, including weekends, to make sure that I have time to proofread and read over what I have written. There are no excuses that I cannot do this because I have more free time with less courses to worry about.
  3.  Participate in optional discussions.
    Usually in an online class, the teacher has an open discussion thread that is open throughout the course’s duration to ask questions to classmates or to contribute to a discussion with classmates on chapters or topics. These are not usually led by an instructor, rather is just used for the students. In the past, I have not used this discussion thread, but in my pre-session course I saw some great information and topics being discussed by other students. I want to at least post in this thread once during my current session 1 summer course to see if it helps.
  4. Complete extra credit assignments.
    In past classes, especially during the hectic school year, sometimes I miss these assignments because I am just too busy to spend extra time on a project that is not required for the course. Now that it is summer and I have extra time on my hands, it is a lot easier to complete extra assignments to help my grade. In summer courses it is a little rare that they will offer extra credit so when I see it, I always try to get it done.
  5. Check email and D2L every day.
    This has already became a habit for me since I have been a UA student and it is the best advice that I can give anyone who is a student here. I have my email connected to my phone and I continually get notifications if my professors email me. This is especially vital in a summer course because it is so fast paced. Things can change immediately from the instructor and it is always good to get this information ASAP. This is a goal that I will continue to have throughout my college career.
  6. Interact with other students and teachers via email.
    This has been a goal of mine for awhile now and I still have a hard time doing this especially in an online course. We do not meet in person so getting to know other students and the teachers is more difficult. In my pre-session course this summer, I did have some questions about a few assignments so I ended up emailing the teacher. To my surprise, she was super excited that I reached out to ask questions and she ended up forwarding the help that she gave me to every one else in the class to help them out as well. I realized that professors appreciate when a student reaches out to ask questions because it shows that the student is very engaged in the material. When communicating with other students it can definitely be a little more difficult. In my last summer course, we had a partner for an online course and we helped each other out a lot other than just on group projects. I recommend even if you do not have an assigned partner, use the classlist and email some of your classmates to see if anyone wants to help or have a discussion with you about the material. They are in the same boat as you are and you can work together so you can both do better in the course.

Hopefully these goals have helped you a bit and have given you ideas on how to succeed in your online courses. I know summer classes aren’t ideal to a fun and relaxing summer, but if you get things done ahead of time you will still have a fun, adventurous summer vacation!


Tucson Adventures

30 May

This summer, I have decided to kick back and spend my time in my hometown, Tucson. Being born and raised here, I know Tucson isn’t the most glamorous city and it may seem like there’s not much to do out here in the desert. Also, in summer it’s sometimes hard to go on extravagant adventures because the air conditioner is calling your name! If you’re staying in Tucson and need some ideas on what to do this summer, this blog’s for you! Here are some adventures that I am going to go on this summer!

1. Hiking/camping
If you want to escape the heat, there are so many mountains that you can explore on! Being in higher elevation, means less heat for you to endure. I love hiking on Mount Lemmon and camping in Reddington. You could easily google some great spots and find one that is best for you!4755277923_cddaa12a97_b.jpg

2. Geocatching
If you do not know what this is, definitely check it out! Basically it is a worldwide scavenger hunt! You download the app “geocatching” on your phone and set your location and it will show you hiding spots of little knick knacks. They give you hints of spots around you and you can go find it, retrieve the item and put one of your own in there so someone else can find it!


3. Cave Exploring!
Caves are absolutely amazing and beautiful! I have always wanted to explore a cave and there is Colossal Cave that is not too far away, but I have never been. I have heard great things from other people who have gone, so one of my summer goals is to go to this cave or even a few others!


4. Rocks and Ropes
I have been to rocks and ropes one time on a girl scout field trip and I was super scared of heights at the time, so I didn’t have that much fun. Now that I’m older, I want to face my fears and try to go on these rock walls!


5. Breakers Water Park
Breakers was an all time favorite spot of mine when I was younger! My family and I had so much fun here back in the day and honestly in summer, it’s a great way to get out of the heat. There are so many slides and a lovely wave pool that you can relax in! This is a spot that I’m going to go to this summer!


Stay cool this summer and hopefully if you’re staying in Tucson this gave you some fun activities to do!


Feel Good Summer Song List

15 May


Turn up your speakers and get ready for a Feel Good Playlist from one of your ASA Peer Mentors. I have provided different genres for your music pleasure! Hopefully, you know and enjoy some of these songs, but also get to hear some new ones! Comment other fun songs for Summer 2017!

1. Closer (Cover) by Boyce Avenue ft. Sarah Hyland
I’m pretty sure that no one knew the Modern Family star had such a great voice! Her unknown talent has been revealed with Boyce Avenue with a cover of the Chainsmokers song, Closer. I love this acoustic version!


2. Green Light by Lorde
Lorde is finally coming out with a new album titled Melodrama and I don’t know about you, but I am super excited. Her voice is very unique and this album is supposed to be brighter than we have ever seen her!


3. Cold Cold Cold by Cage the Elephant
Cage the Elephant has many amazing hits, especially Ain’t No Rest for the Wicked. Cage the Elephant takes on a new sound in their new album titled Tell Me I’m Pretty. Their softer style will definitely make you feel good!


4. Believer by Imagine Dragons
This is absolutely my favorite song right now! This song is so powerful, it pumps you up and you feel like you can take on the world! If you have not heard of this song, you need to listen to it ASAP!


5. Highway by Bleeker
This is a perfect road trip song! Not only does it relate to the streets you take, but it hypes you up and makes you want to dance! Every time I hear it in my car, I can’t help, but singing and grooving a bit!

6. Wanting you by Street Urchinz
This lovely song was suggested by Shannon and it has a reggae feel to it. It’s almost like a Bob Marley meets Red Hot Chili Peppers. I just got introduced to this band and I want to listen to them more after hearing this!


7. Malibu by Miley Cyrus
Miley Cyrus has once again changed her sound dramatically. I have to be honest, lately I haven’t been a huge fan of Miley’s but this song has made me think twice. This JUST came out and I have listened to it a ton of times! To see her happy and hear her bright lyrics, it’s hard not to smile.


8. Sweet Disaster by Dreamers
This is one of my all time favorite songs right now. It is calming, relaxing, and the vocals of this group is fantastic. They are not that popular at the moment, but hopefully in the next few years they will become more well known for their AMAZING songs!


9. Sunday Morning by Maroon 5
You definitely can not make a feel good playlist without putting this song on it. Every time I hear this song it is like I am riding a bike in a park or drinking the perfect cup of coffee and watching the sun rise. I know this song isn’t the newest, but it sure is a jam.


10. Shape of You by Ed Sheeran
It is no doubt that this is one of the most popular songs right now and I am not surprised; Ed Sheeran’s voice is simply perfect! Enough said.


11. Can’t Stop The Feeling! by Justin Timberlake
Of course, our playlist had to include the one and only JT! Since he was in NSYNC, this man has always caught the attention of music lovers and continues to come out with hits all of the time. There is no way that anyone can sit still when this song comes on.


12. Stay by Zedd and Alessia Cara
This is one of the best duos. With Zedd’s incredible music and Alessia’s sweet, but powerful voice it’s hard not to like this song. It is one of those amazing summer songs that is played every time you’re with your friends!


13. Blame by Bastille
I have been listening to Bastille since I was in high school and they never disappoint! Dan’s velvety, deep voice always pairs great with the intense emotions and melodies in all of their songs. Blame is just the same!


14. Human by Rag’n’Bone Man
This song came out not too long ago and Rag’n’Bone Man is a powerhouse. He has such an intense voice that can captivate you in the first lyric. I hope he comes out with more amazing hits like this soon!!


15. Something Just Like This by the Chainsmokers and Coldplay
I will leave you with another amazing collaboration! Come on, Chainsmokers and Coldplay?? Pretty amazing, if you ask me! This lovely song is perfect for one of your well deserved relaxing days on your summer off!

I hope I have left you with some new music to listen to this summer that you can make memories with! For me, music is everything and I would not know what to do without it. Like I stated earlier, if you have any music suggestions for me on my summer adventures, I would love to hear any! Comment below if you do! 🙂


Have a GREAT start to your summer!


#AdventurousApril: Pink Hair, Don’t Care

20 Apr


Ever since I was little, I’ve wanted to dye my hair. Unfortunately, I never did it because my mom would always give me reasons of why I shouldn’t. She never wanted me to damage my long brown hair. At the beginning of this year, I took a very large step and got a blonde balayage in August. I loved this look at first but after having it for awhile, I knew I needed a change.

Recently, I have been looking online and have fallen in love with hair that has dramatic rainbow colors in it. I think it is super bold to do and up until now, I was always weary of changing my hair dramatically. My favorite color is purple and after a long time thinking about this change, I finally decided to do it.

When I scheduled my appointment, I was nervous and I had to wait a few days until they could get me in. During these few days, I kept going back and forth between what I actually wanted to dye my hair. I was debating between cutting it and going to a lighter blonde, adding purple, or going to a darker brown. After changing my mind for the 10th time, I decided to just go for it and add purple to it. I figured that this is the time of my life that I could change my hair dramatically before I have to worry about looking professional all of the time.

The day of my appointment, I was excited but nervous as well. I was nervous that I would not like it and regret changing my hair completely. My stylist’s name is Stephanie and when I told her what I wanted to do with my hair, she was super excited. She has worked with vibrant colors before and she assured me that it would turn out great, especially with a balayage. Unfortunately, it did not turn out exactly what I envisioned because my stylist did not have the purple that they usually use. Instead, she mixed colors together to try to get the purple what I was looking for. My hair turned out to be a pink/raspberry color, but I was not upset about it.

I love the color that it turned out to be and Stephanie made sure that I could go back in and get the purple that I originally wanted in my hair. She said that she could redo the entire thing, but I am just going to add some purple in and leave some of the wonderful raspberry color. I am so excited that I followed through with my plans of getting it dyed dramatically because I think it fits my personality perfectly.

I would suggest if you want to try to change your hair by cutting it, dying it a random color then to do it! There shouldn’t be anything holding your back because college is about finding yourself. It’s about expression and this is the best time to take risks and chances!


Spring Break Creative Challenge!

10 Mar

I find that one of the best way to relax from anything is to do something creative to take your mind off of stress. Whether the stress is from school, family, or friends, it’s nice to take your mind off of things in a creative way especially though Spring Break. I have been trying to do my own creative challenge since the start of the year and am trying to continue it until the end. I have gotten inspiration from challenges that I have seen online as well as incorporated different medias than sticking to just one. I have listed a few that I have done and am currently still doing. I have also provided pictures of what I have created! Hopefully, as you read this, you will get inspired from the activities that I have done and will create your own to destress from your life!

1. Make a fort out of anything you have in your house
I did this with my boyfriend over the break. We got out a bunch of pillows and blanket and suspended them to make a little enclosure to camp out in!


2. Make a portrait only using black and white paint
This was based on a photograph of Ellie Goulding and was one of the first portraits I tried to do.


3. Make something out of play-doh
This was when I was babysitting over the break. The little girl I was watching and I made a bunch of little animals out of play-doh and played with them.


4. Find something creative in an everyday object
I found a smiley face in my Oreo!! 🙂


5. Use oil pastels to create a flower scene
This took a little bit of time to make but I just picked a few different flowers that were a lot different from one another and played with blending colors together.


6. Make a painting that is not completely flat.
I stained the paper with tea, let it dry, and then laid joint compound on the paper. I made up a texture on the cups on the right with a pallet knife, let it dry again, and then painted with acrylic paint.


7. Make a theme song for something or someone.
When I did this one, it was for my pet turtle. Imagine if they had a show about them, give them superpowers, whatever you can think of, and make lyrics about them (in mine, my pet turtle was an investigator). Then, make up a tune or sing in the tune of a song that is already out there and try to put them together. Sometimes it takes a few times to make it work, but in the process, I promise you will have some fun and it will make you laugh!

Some of these activities as you can see, range between the effort and time spent on each depending on what I had going on for the day or the week. Make a challenge that fits into your lifestyle; don’t try to make something every day if you are not able to actually do it. Good luck with your challenge if you decide to make one, it’s a lot of fun!


#FearlessFebruary: Battling Bugs and Technology

27 Feb

This February, I took on a challenge that I never thought that I would ever have to do: Battle DISGUSTING cockroaches! Along with this, I also decided that I wanted to cut back on using technology because I use it way too often. Of courgiphy-1.gifse, it happened to be the same day that I promised myself that I would not use my phone nor computer that I was outside for 5 hours, bombing the house for cockroaches. Don’t get me wrong, I am not nomophobic or nervous when I do not have technology around me. I just like to use them for music and online shopping, which I do all of the time.

They day before my boyfriend and I were going to raid the house, we had to prep! I went on my computer (don’t worry I did not cheat, it was starting the next day) and because I am always nervous about using harsh giphy-3.gifchemicals around our cats and little turtle, I had to make sure we did everything to prevent them from being harmed. I went on the Raid website and it had a little quiz that found out what kind of bugs you wanted to get rid of, where they were located, how many you have seen and then showed a system that would get rid of the gross bugs. We made a trip to the store and bought what we needed and the nextgiphy-6.gif day, was the day: no phone/computer and bug killing. We were determined to get rid of the cockroaches that took over our kitchen!

The day of was a little difficult I must say. The moment I woke up, I wanted to reach over to my phone to make sure that no one texted/called me. I had to remind myself that I promised to stop checking my phone as often as I do. I decided the best thing to do was make Casey, my boyfriend, hold onto my phone the whole day so I would not be tempted to use it. Also, just in case my father called he could talk to my dad for me. We prepped the house and the giphy-5.gifanimals to be outside for the majority of the day by getting some blankets and putting them out in the backyard along with their food dishes and essentials. For our amusement, I brought out some playing cards and some toys that the cats could play with.

Casey went inside the house to set off the foggers and then ran out to the backyard, holding his breath. We set off 4 and then started to relax for the long haul. I kid you not, after 5 minutes, the cats wanted to go back inside! We started laughing and told the cats that if they are wanting to go in now, they have a long time ahead of them! They were very antsy, and then they started to get the hint that we were going to be outside for a long time, and started to settle in. Mr. Turtle, on the other hand, was in paradise! He was climbing on rocks, wedging his way through plants, and exploring boxes and tarps. He loves every time he is outside and he gets the biggest smile on his face! giphy-4.gif

At about the halfway point, we realized that we did not bring any snacks or any food outside. You would think that we would have thought about that before we set off the foggers but no, we were too busy taking care of the cats and Mr. Turtle. Casey decided to order pizza to our backyard over the phone and it was delivered super fast! Once the cats smelled our food, they went crazy! They were begging to go inside so I fed them some wet food and they were content for the rest of the time we were out there.

Once all 5 hours passed and we aired out the apartment, we were all, including Mr. Turtle, happy to be inside. We were also glad to see that there were no cockroaches that were hanging around still! I must admit, it was difficult being outside for a long period of time with no technology but we were prepared with playing cards. We actually spent a majority of the time playing war and talking with each other. It made time go by fast and for the rest of the day, I was not tempted to look at my phone or go online. I think that as long as I keep myself busy, it will be easier to limit the time that I spendgiphy-2.gif looking at a screen. You should try it too! You will realize you can accomplish much more and will have more fun if you do not constantly rely on your phone or computer for entertainment!



7 Changes for Spring

31 Dec

Every student goes through trial-and-error phases at the beginning of their college education. I have tried a lot of new ideas this fall and the successes they brought have shown me some areas where I’ve been doing things the hard way. Here are a few of the changes I’m bringing to my Spring semester to make my life easier. Try them out to save yourself the trouble and avoid unnecessary struggle!

1. Wait to see if I need the book for a class before buying it

In previous semesters, I have always felt pressured to buy all of the required textbooks for my courses. I end up spending hundreds of dollars for all of my classes together and some, I hardly use and end up returning them. I have decided to wait until the professor clarifies if we need a book or if I could buy a different edition of the book. This way, I won’t spend unnecessary money if I am able to buy the cheaper version or if I do not have to buy the book at all.

2. Do not pull all-nighters

There was a few time this semester that I lacked on sleep. It was mostly caused by procrastinating and it ended up with me getting a lower grade on the assignment. I have realized from this semester that I need to start my assignments earlier or work on them a little each day in order to prevent pulling an all nighter. This semester I am going to set a deadlines. If my assignment is due at 11:59pm, I am going to have it done before 8pm (at the absolute latest) to make sure that I get an ample amount of sleep.

3. Talk to my advisor moreadvisor

As it becomes closer to my graduation, I have realized that my advisor is the best person to talk to if I have questions. This semester, she has really helped me get into classes that I have need in order to graduate. She also informed me about internships and independent studies. I want to continue to have this close relationship with her because she has told me about classes and options that I didn’t know before as well as help me stay on track with graduation.

4. Go to office hours

Since I have been at the university, everyone has told me to visit my professor during office hours. Honestly, I had never visited them until this semester. This semester I made an appointment because I was worried about a grade and I was really glad I did. My instructor let me know that one bad grade is not the end of the world and I would still finish the semester with a good grade. After the way that this went, I realized that it was not as scary or as intimidating that I made myself believe it would be. She really cared about my performance in her class and she had great feedback of how I can improve. Next semester, I plan to utilize office hours of my professors to get to know them and to ask questions if I am struggling on a project or in the class.

5. Make my lunch the night before I go to classlunch

When hunger strikes between classes you have no choice but to stop and feed your brain. But what you feed your brain makes a big difference! Instead of grabbing a greasy burger or tasty wrap that will add up to more than my food budget, I’ve learned that packing my lunch is worth its weight in financial aid. Taking a few minutes to pack it before bed lets me grab and go in the morning.

6. Use checklists more often

In the past I’ve tried keeping mental notes on homework and assignments each day with plans of getting things done as soon as I get home. I think we all know how that works out. Even if you do remember that day, Netflix and a nap on the couch come calling and all the details fade into a cloud of “I’ll do it later.” Instead of letting my memory turn into a hot mess this semester, I began to use checklists in my planner to organize ideas. Not only does it keep things in order, but it’s satisfying to cross things off as you accomplish them.

7. Utilize Writing Workshops

I am not the strongest writer. I have improved over the years, but the time it takes me to write a paper is ridiculous. It’s hard for me to organize my thoughts and get a good solid idea that goes along with the prompt. By using the Writing Skills Improvement Program workshops, I was able to improve my writing skills free of charge.

Overall, changing a few things here and there make a big difference in the amount of time, money and effort it takes to meet your goals each semester. Try out a few of these tips and tricks to simplify your academic life so you can focus on the things that matter.

Good Luck in Spring Semester!