Crack down

Elizabeth Rund

As 2006 came to a close, many Kent State students returned home with stories of wild parties, cross-campus treks in the snow, and for some, parking miles away from everything.

With shopping, spending time with friends and finally eating a home-cooked meal, it may be easy to understand why grades might have been the last things on students’ minds. But what happens when the novelty of returning home wears off and the semester of relaxing and partying catches up?

“College is often a student’s first experience with long-range planning as opposed to daily assignments,” said honors college advisor Becky Gares.

For students like first year philosophy graduate student Jesse McMahon, midterms put the semester into perspective.

“I procrastinated a lot,” he said. “I waited until the last minute to write a 30-page paper.”

By the time finals come around, many students find a system of studying and work hard. But as finals week approaches, excitement about going home for a month can cause students to become restless, letting their new habits slip.

Those who were disappointed with their final semester grades may have made a New Year’s resolution to study harder, turn in assignments, and actually attend class. Unfortunately, the damage has already been done. But a GPA can still be saved, provided students are willing to try to balance social time and study time.

The biggest problem that students seem to have is finding that balance.

“Every student must sometimes take a hard look at the balance in their lives of work/fun vs. class requirements,” Gares said.

This advice may seem cliché, but take it from someone who knows.

“You have to find a happy balance between work and fun, don’t have extremes,” McMahon said.

Gares encouraged students to read each classes syllabus carefully and keep due dates in mind. Students who are having trouble can seek help from a professor or tutor, as well as places like the Writing Center.

McMahon said he has also developed a plan. “I am looking ahead and reading ahead, preparing for the classes,” he said.

Contact features correspondent Elizabeth Rund at [email protected].