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



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