Staying Sane During Finals

Staying Sane During Finals

Staying Sane During Finals

When I first got here, I was very intimidated.I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to keep up with the work, or even enjoy the classes I chose to take. Now, I’m almost finished with my first term! Time has flown by, and I can’t even begin to describe how much I’ve learned. Although the work has been challenging, it’s manageable.

I feel the same way about finals: although they look impossible when they’re first assigned, once you begin studying, drafting essays, and outlining group projects, they become very doable. This term I was assigned a final paper for my Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies class, a final portfolio for my art class (Observational Drawing), and a final presentation/group project for my A&I, Civil Discourse in a Troubled Age. I’m thankful that I don’t have any exams this term!

My Finals ScheduleClasses end on Wednesday, followed by “reading days.” These two empty days leave time for students to study before their finals and prepare for final projects that will take place over the weekend. This can be a super stressful time—one way that Carleton has helped us out is by providing special food!

My favorite so far has been the hot cocoa and apple cider bar in the LDC! They set up (very chocolatey hot chocolate) and yummy cider, followed by a sweet array of toppings to choose from. The LDC also had a build-your-own street taco night, and offered free “snack-bags” for students to take. My roommate and I especially enjoyed these—chocolate covered espresso beans and cinnamon roles are perfect pre-exam treats.

Carleton also has a very special non-traditional tradition before finals: the primal scream.

“At 10:00 p.m. the night before finals start, Carleton students lean out their windows and let out a collective unearthly wail of anguish and despair. Then they go back to studying.”End of term comes quickly, but even in such a short amount of time, Carleton has become a safe space for me. It seems weird to be planning rides to the airport, flights, and long drives back home so soon. Because of the pandemic, we face an extra challenge—setting up travel plans has become especially difficult. Whether we will be able to return to the college for winter term is also unknown, which makes packing up for home even stranger. No one really knows what to plan for!

I really hope we get to come back in the winter—even though this term has been stressful and overwhelming at times (especially during finals week!), Carleton has become my home.Erin grew up catching salamanders, recklessly climbing trees, and running around barefoot in the Appalachian Mountains in a small town in North Carolina. This is her first year at Carleton, and she’s looking forward to meeting new people, exploring campus (especially the arb!), and essaysonline org experiencing her first Minnesota winter. She is currently interested in studying psychology and gender, women’s, and sexuality studies. Meet the other bloggers!