Congratulations! It’s midway through the third week of school and we’ve successfully crossed over to February.
To some, this is enough time to decide whether a class seems worth attending or if it can be easily passed with infrequent visits to the classroom.
To me, every class is always worth attending because I’m paying $372 per unit as an out-of-state student and I’m not a fan of wasting money.
Unfortunately, I learned this the hard way, as many students do. As an incoming first-year student I fooled myself into thinking college was going to be a breeze.
I was so naive to think not showing up would somehow be OK when finals came around. So naive to think I could chill while missing class, which only perpetuated my stress later. So naive to ignore the sinking feeling of possibly having to repeat a class, or worse — tell my parents about it.
In the end, of course, I did have to tell my parents about my poor grades. Let’s just say it wasn’t pretty. I got a job in construction, learned what I did not want to do with my life and came back to school.
It was a completely new experience. I had made my mistakes and was ready to learn.
My mom always says 90 percent of the battle is showing up. Even though that statistic is subject to change, she’s right. The work we do in college builds on itself.
Not showing up to class means missing serious parts of the groundwork that comes before the grades.
There will always be the temptation to miss class. If it’s raining, if I have a cold or if it’s Thursday and my friends don’t have Friday classes, of course drinking beer sounds better.
And there’s always, “I’m not going — my professor doesn’t take roll and we’re not doing anything important today.”
But what am I here for? Absolutely nothing?
I’m one of the privileged few who make it to university. What am I here for if not to actually attend classes?
Regardless of whether a professor takes roll or not, showing up will make all the difference.
Spring semester of last year I earned the highest GPA of my college career. My secret? Going to class.
Like anything done frequently enough, it can become a habit. Starting off the year by avidly attending classes will carry on throughout the semester.
Every time I miss a class there’s an underlying feeling like I’m supposed to be somewhere. Then I realize, “Oh, I am supposed to be somewhere!” Consequently, a slightly guilty feeling sets over me.
Another way I avoid missing classes is by developing relationships with my professors. If I feel the urge to leave early, the thought of their stink eye will often keep me in my seat.
But most of what keeps me showing up to classes throughout the semester is the amazing feeling that comes when it’s over. I know I’ve finished out the semester well, and I know I worked my ass off to do so.
Julianna Eveland can be reached at [email protected] or @theorion_news on Twitter.