Finals are just around the corner, and it’s a pretty daunting prospect for us first-years. That said, being a Vancouverite, I’m already looking ahead to when I’ll be going back for the winter break – brief as it may be for engineers. One of the struggles I’ve been contending with as of late has been attempting to remain focused with the idea of touching down in Vancouver in the back of my mind.
Maybe other out-of-town and international students can relate to how I’ve been feeling lately. Don’t get me wrong, U of T has been a great experience that I wouldn’t trade for anything in the world, but it’s just that long-standing familiarity and fondness of my hometown that makes me so eager to head back. I’ve made so many great friends here, but still miss seeing the same faces every day that I’d seen for so many years at my old school. With 6 evaluations in the coming weeks, I’m fully aware of the fact that I should be laser-focused on studying, but the time I set aside for that has been mostly unproductive thus far.
One of the things I’ve been trying to do in an effort to combat the procrastination has been to be a more active participant of #UnplugUofT . Always having access to services that allow contact with friends back home makes me check every few minutes for a new message; as you can probably imagine, that isn’t very conducive to a productive atmosphere. So, I’ve been making concerted efforts to block out Facebook and my phone in general when getting ready to start a study session. While that’s definitely helped, getting into the right frame of mind in the first place has been a challenge.
I wouldn’t call it daydreaming, but it’s been far too easy for my mind to wander back to the West Coast when attempting to study. Maybe it’s just my mind’s way of coping with difficult study material, but remaining focused on the task at hand certainly hasn’t been easy. It feels like I have to constantly remind myself that the most important thing right now is to be as prepared as possible heading into the exam period. Final exams for my courses at U of T have an exponentially more significant impact on my marks here than did ther counterparts in high school.
Studying for finals was a tedious process in high school, but it seems to have taken on a whole new level here in university. Progress has been slow, but things are starting to pick up. With luck, I’ll head home with confidence about the finals I’ll have just wrapped up, as well as optimism about the semester to come.