Dormwork

The harder I work, the luckier I get. – Samuel Goldwyn

The children are shaking in their seats. Eyes bolt from the blackboard, to the clock, and then back. A bead of sweat trickles down the side of a fellow students face as the teacher directs a question toward that unlucky individual. A tension is residing in the air. Uneasiness can be breathed in. A minute left in class. Are we home free? 50 seconds left, some students are beginning to nervously bite their fingernails. 40 seconds, whispers can be heard, but not deciphered. 30 seconds remaining, and the teacher is still droning on about a topic that has not been thought about by the students for the better part of five minutes. 20 seconds; excitement is starting to rise. 10 SECONDS. Is it going to happen? Five seconds left, and the teacher turns from the blackboard. Anxious eyes meet their gaze. Some look at the teachers lips, impatiently waiting for any movement; attempting to know what will be said before it is spoken.

“Please read chapter 1 and answer questions 1-10. Be thorough and use information from the reading to answer the questions. Oh, and have a great weekend.”

Class ends.

Alright, so that is not normally the exact way that homework is assigned, but hey, maybe it has happened before. There are often times that I look back on my academic career and can recall moments when I dreaded homework. In hindsight, it is difficult not to laugh at my outlook towards homework. Homework from high school compared to homework at the college level is a dramatic change that can leave some people in dire situations. The difference between the amount of homework is notable, and the tendency for it to become overwhelming is undeniable.

First and foremost, I now prefer to call homework, dormwork. Lets be honest here, it is not homework unless you are doing it at home. Now lets move on to the important stuff.

As the years have passed, I have become accustomed, or maybe even brain washed, into thinking that it was the teachers responsibility to remind their students of homework assignments. This sentiment was continually confirmed as a student tackles their high school experience. It was not taboo for teachers to even hunt down students to get their assignments. Early on at college, students come to the realization that teachers are not going to lose sleep over one of their students not handing in their assignments. Likewise, it becomes apparent that some teachers will not make it known when and what dormwork assignments are to be completed. (yes, I will be referring to it as dormwork from here on out) It becomes the responsibility of the individual student to take the initiative to go and verify what assignments need to be done. This can be done through talking to professors, checking internet sights, and talking to fellow classmates.

Now that you know what you are supposed to be doing, the next task is in completing the assignment on time. Some of you readers may be sitting there thinking, “does he really need to even say that?” My answer is obviously, “Hell yes!” I have come to the realization that the amount and variety of activities that take place on the campus of a university are certainly not lacking. There is always something going on. Whether it is just a group of newly made friends hanging out and relaxing together in a dorm, or the plethora of student run activities, it is unmistakable that something will be going on. Getting caught up in the desire to have a good time is simple. Time is a greedy entity, it is constantly stealing seconds, minutes and hours. An assignment that once had plenty of time to be completed can be the assignment that is now due in a few hours. Completing an assignment on time is a great step in the right direction and is probably appreciated by the professor. It may mean missing a few social excursions, but college, after all, is about academic work.

Well now that the assignment has been completed on time, its time to focus on the quality of the work. Sure, just getting that assignment in is awesome, but if its choppy and full of easily spotted errors, then you might as well have turned it in late. Throwing some meaningless, thoughtless work is not going to be overlooked by professors. For some, this means hiding away from the craziness and caffeine fueled uproar that occurs throughout the day in many dorms. Putting thought into each word, phrase, sentence and paragraph goes a long way. Dot your “i’s” and cross your “t’s.”Putting just a thimble of extra effort into your work can be the difference between a B+ and an A-. Extra work at college is not something that is frowned upon, it is something that deserves applaud and is often further encouraged when good grades follow extra work. Call me a nerd and all I will have to say is “thank you.”

Dormwork is just an element of college that cannot be ignored. Everybody at the school who plans on succeeding is doing it. So you can even look at it this way. Since everybody is doing it, it means all the cool kids are doing, and come on, who doesn’t want to be cool? Although college is much more than just school work, it is unquantifiably important that you do not forget why you are there. College is a major investment of time and money. It has a stake in your future, too. It may seem monotonous and boring at times, but it is necessary. So get your favorite pen, your brightest highlighter and a stack of assignments and get going, no one wants you to succeed more than yourself.

Nothing will work unless you do. – Maya Angelou

Cheers,

Andy

Hi, I’m (Insert Name Here), Nice to Meet You.

A friend is one of the nicest things you can have, and one of the best things you can be. – Douglas Pagels

Friend. Such a simple term. It is thrown around in conversation often. “Yeah, I’m going out with my friend tonight.” There are some people that claim to be friends with people they have met only once. While others have a friend that they have known for the majority of their life. The word friend is a loose term. There are limitless meanings that can accompany the word “friend.” A friend can be so many different things or even a combination of many different things. Each friend is different, possessing different qualities and outlooks on life itself. Friend is also a term that needs to be shared mutually. In order to form a friendship, both sides need to be actively participating in the relationship. ¬†Among the most varied and interesting elements of the human race is friendship.

College is an interesting and, more often than not, confusing time when it comes to making friends. You are no longer dealing with those that you have spent the vast majority of your life with. Instead you are exposed to tidal waves of new faces. You are exposed to new dialects, phrases and outlooks that you may be quite unfamiliar with. I still hold the ideal; however, that everyone deserves a chance because it is safe to say that you know almost no one.

With legions of new people to meet, it is difficult to know who to say hi to and who not to. Saying something as simple as hello may spark a friendship that has the capacity of transcending time. At the same time though, there will always be people in this world who feel that they deserve the world served to them on a golden platter. There are some whose souls have become hostile and bitter, brought down by the strenuousness of life and the strain of time. Some young souls, for whatever reason, become tainted and horrid after being exposed to such a short amount of time on this Earth.

This being said, there are millions of genuinely phenomenal people in the world. Some people’s upbeat and positive nature can spread like wildfire to those around them. Maybe it is because these people have not found how difficult life is yet, but it also could be because these people know all to well how difficult life is. They feel that it is their outright responsibility to make somebody else’s life better, even if that means just a simple smile and a friendly conversation. These people tend to be infectious, the kind of virus that anybody would love to become sick with.

Once you find a group of friends at school, new problems sometimes do arise. Early on, it is difficult to tell exactly who your new friends actually are. The idea that they may not actually like you goes through your head. You begin to wonder if it is a mutual friendship or if it just goes one way. Its invariably a very sticky situation that can leave you feeling mortified and fearful. It’s human nature to be wanted, and more often than not, you find that you are wanted. Sometimes insecurities need to be released and faith in other people becomes a necessary entity. It becomes imperative that you let your negativities go.

According to the chaos theory, it has been said that something as insignificant as a butterfly fluttering its’ wings can cause a typhoon halfway across the world. The same can be applied to friendships. Holding the door for someone or offering a simple hello can start a friendship that could possibly last an entire lifetime. Little decisions have the possibility of becoming something that is much more than what was intended. Its about keeping an open mind and open heart to those around you. Never be quick to shut someone out and always be ready to listen; what people have to say can sometimes surprise you. Surround yourself with people that seemingly have nothing in common with you just to find out that there is something that connects you too one another. There are thousands of new people to meet in college, and not trying to meet as many people as you can is an injustice to yourself as well as everyone else.

I’m certain that during college I will meet many people. Some will be no more than a passing memory while some will forever hold a place in both my mind and heart. I look forward to all the people I will meet throughout college and look forward to welcoming some into my life. It is with great hope that others feel the same way as I do. So put yourself out there and go make some new friends, you will be at college for at least four years; you ¬†might as well have some friends along the way.

The most beautiful discovery true friends make is that they can grow separately without growing apart. – Elisabeth Foley