By: Morgan Dixon
As a full-time student who lives on her own, I have many obligations that I tend to on a daily basis. I also work 32 hours a week, and manage two internships. On top of all of this I also maintain a relationship and social life. And at times, it does feel like the world is caving in on me. But at the end of it all, it is so worth it!
1. Wake up early
The early bird really does get the worm. Waking up a few hours earlier than normal gives me extra time to get tasks done throughout my day. I make sure I am awake at 7 a.m. six days a week, and give myself one day to sleep in. This gives me a balance between getting enough rest, and getting all of my work done. Getting up early also gets me into a routine schedule that I will need to be in once working a 9 to 5 job.
2. Plan Ahead
I write a schedule for my week every Sunday. I plan out every detail of every day so that I don’t forget or miss anything important. Some may call this OCD, which it is, but it’s important for me to have a set schedule. With a strict plan of what I am going to be doing I have times set for everything, and can make sure I am able to get it all done. I plan anything and everything from meeting with my mentor, to grabbing lunch with a friend, to going to the gym. It allows me to follow a strict schedule and know what I need to be doing when in order to finish everything.
3. Work 8 hour shifts
I work 32 hours a week, but only four days a week. This gives me three days off to take classes, meet with my internship mentors, or catch up on homework. Having a set schedule at work also helps. You can’t be afraid to ask for a day off either. If I know that one week I have a test, I will request to work a four hour shift one day instead of eight, so that I can get more studying done that week.
4. Work early in the morning
I work at Starbucks, so I request to work from 4:30 a.m. until 1 p.m. This gives me my entire evening to get my work done, meet with my internship mentors, or catch up on any work I didn’t get done on my days off. Since I am an early bird anyways, getting up at 3:30 a.m for work has gotten a lot easier. I get to work, drink coffee my entire shift, and am amped up to get the work I need to get done done after work.
5. Take classes back to back
I save trips to campus by taking all of my classes back to back. Which is a struggle at times, because I get hungry or antsy to go home. But I manage. It saves me trips back and forth to campus, which cuts back on travel time. This allows for me to have more time in my week to get other things done. I have learned that taking all of my classes two days a week, and back to back, has given me much more time to get other things done.
I get asked all of the time how I manage it, but it’s all based on my ambition. I have to work full-time in order to maintain a living. And I am determined to graduate in 4 years, this being my last semester! I put in the effort given to get everything done, and I work hard to make sure that I am doing everything on time. It does get tiring, but the feeling of accomplishment I have helps to overcome that.