By Graham "GSM" Matthews
This weekly blog will document my firsthand experiences as a student at Endicott College. Additionally, I will attempt to offer advice to fellow college students or those looking to attend college down the line.
One of the biggest changes about coming to college is the amount of time you have. If you were like me in high school, then you probably had zero time to do anything. From homework to work to chores to sports to other extracurricular activities, you more than likely had little to no time to pursue other interests or have a social life in high school, especially during your senior year when everything is going on (getting your license, going to proms, etc). Once you go to college, that all changes. Unless you are on a sports team or in a club that takes up most of your day when you are not in class, then you probably will have a lot of time on your hands. One would think that a normal person would use that time to their advantage. This may not come as much of a shock to you, but in reality, a lot of people don't.
As teenagers/young adults, we like to procrastinate. It is in our blood. I did it quite a bit in high school (or just life in general), and I know I am not the only one. However, I have changed my ways since coming to college. I am no longer able to attend MMA classes, I no longer have driving school, I don't do a radio show or film videos on a regular basis anymore, so I have a lot more time to kill. That being said, I have learned how to utilize said time wisely.
As a college student, you are no longer in school for eight consecutive hours a day and doing work constantly. Instead, you have classes at different times each day and have breaks in between to eat, relax, rest and do other things. In that free time, you have to learn to get your work done. If you wait until the night before the assignment is due and are on the verge of falling asleep, well, then that is your own fault. Be smart and get your work done in the free time you have during the day so you don't have to cram at the last possible minute.
Unless you are commuting in college, you won't have your parents with you every step of the way. Remember the days when you would be annoyed by your parents asking you if your homework was done? Well, you can now proceed to thank them, because without them, you are more likely to procrastinate than you were in high school, which is a scary thought. You need to learn to discipline yourself into getting your work done. There is going to be a lot of distractions in college (and I mean a lot), but it is up to you to resist the computer, video games and other things in an attempt to get your work done on time.
Your work load will be doubled by the time you get to college, so it is important to be constructive with that time and no waste it. As the old saying goes, time is a precious thing to waste, so don't be naive and think you have all the time in the college. You don't, because time will fly faster than you think it will. Find a quiet place to work, such as a library, where you can go to get your work done without distraction. It has worked well for me personally thus far (I am actually at the library as of this writing) and I strongly suggest others to do the same.
Once your work is done, then you can spend the whole night/day doing whatever the hell you want. I spend most of nights watching wrestling and catching up on my shows because I managed to get all of my homework done beforehand. If your college is like mine, then you will receive a syllabus for each class, and a syllabus can be your biggest benefit if you use it correctly. Plan ahead by seeing what is due in coming weeks and getting the work done long before it is due so you won't have to worry about cramming if something was to come up unexpectedly. You are granted a lot of freedom in college, so don't squander that privilege by not managing your time accordingly.