I thought I would have plenty of free time during my semester abroad. Back home I work full time while attending school. On top of that, I am also in tons of extracurricular activities. Since I don’t work or am involved with extracurricular activities, I am able to dedicate my time to full-time school. However, I used to live at home and have my meals prepared by my mom, now I’m living in a dorm preparing my own food or looking for restaurants. I also have to be flexible about when I do my laundry and not do it last minute because sometimes the washing machines are occupied for hours.
At my school, each class is three hours long so we only have to come once a week. But that gives me 6-9 hours of class the days I do attend, and traveling every weekend tends to eat up my days. There were a couple of times when I arrived home late on Sunday night from my trip and have class bright and early the next morning. In at least two of my Monday classes, I have a quiz each week. I quickly had to learn how to manage my time.
Before I went to Morocco last weekend, I knew that I wouldn’t be able to do my work over the weekend because my itinerary was packed with activities so I tried to do as much as I could before I left. I had a math quiz to prepare for so I spent 2 hours each day studying and doing practice problems leading up to the day I left. I printed out all the readings I had to do for all of my classes. It was a 4-hour flight so I read and highlighted everything on the plane. The professor gave us a lot of discussion questions for class so I answered all the questions so I could be ready for class. On the way back to Prague, I used the 4 hours on the plane to review for my quizzes.
I made sure to use my time wisely because I knew I would get home late and I would be too exhausted to study. I wanted to go to bed as soon as I could because I would have 9 hours of classes with small breaks in between and I wanted to be ready to be an active participant in class and to not be falling asleep.
I always make sure that no matter how tired I am that I always make it to class on time. I made it right on time and took my two quizzes and I’m happy to report that I received an A on both.
I don’t want to just get by in classes, I want to do great in them. I don’t want my grades to go down while I’m abroad. It’s not always fun to plan every minute of my day and get my work done early especially when I’m not in the mood to do it, but I always appreciate it when I’m on my weekend trips and I can just enjoy myself instead of worrying about my work not being done.