Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Making Time for Time Management

Last week was rough. My mom was having surgery to remove organs affected by cancer. I drove the 2 hours and 40 minutes to get to my hometown on Sunday, spent the better part of Monday through Wednesday at the hospital and got back Wednesday night, in time to pick up my daughter from daycare.  After I left, I found out my mom had contracted an infection and was very ill. Halfway home I regretted leaving and called my sister to see if I should come back.  She assured me that she and my other sister and dad could take care of things there. On Thursday and Friday, I gave 5 presentations to incoming freshman on picking a major/career. In between presentations, I advised new freshman and current students and helped them picked their classes. By Friday night, I was exhausted!

Juggling work and home can be a challenge, but when you add in the stress of worrying about a loved one, it becomes overwhelming.  I was lucky in college to not have had to work during the school year. My parents wanted me to be able to focus on school work. I worked full time in the summer and part-time during spring break and winter break. 

However, it seems that the vast majority of SCC students have to work while going to school. They also may be required to be a full time student to receive their financial aid. Therefore, they are taking 4 or 5 classes, working, and commuting back and forth. Not to mention, if they have a family of their own or other commitments besides work and school (activities, sports, volunteer work, etc.). It’s clear that time management is a critical skill.

Our website has some great tips on how to manage your time while in college: http://www.stchas.edu/academics/student-resources/student-support/college-success/managing-your-time.html

We even offer a course called Time Management (BAS 132) and College Study Skills (COL 090) and College Success Seminar (COL 101) also cover this topic. The ACE Tutoring Center also offers tips and handouts on time management.

One of the best pieces of advice counselors give to students is to balance their work and school so that they can be successful in both. It’s always better to take fewer classes and do well in them than to get overwhelmed and have to drop or worse, fail. 

I am lucky to have the support of friends, family, and colleagues when I am having a stressful week. And at the end of the week, I found out that my mom’s surgery was a success and she is cancer-free!


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