Swerve director Sarah Vassello
I am a senior who hopes to graduate in May, so I’ve been down this exam road a time or two (or like 20). At least four of those times, my final has made or broken my entire grade. And, spoiler alert, it’s all turned out fine and I’ve passed and we’re all doing great.
As a senior who panics about her grades all of the time, I have a lot of advice for you, first-years.
Rule number one: START STUDYING EARLY. One first-year recently told me she was worried not having enough time to prepare. Cramming doesn’t work because, often, you’re so worried that you don’t retain the information. Go out on LDOC, have fun, take a break, relieve some stress. Then get to work the next day.
Rule number two: Practice self-care. The same first-year said she was already feeling regret and guilt about her exams. Girl, same. Those feelings do not go away when you take exams, and that’s just a fact. No matter how well you did, there’s always going to be something that you wish you did better from your semester. What I’ve learned in four years is to lean into it. Embrace your stress and allow yourself to feel your guilt — and remember that for next semester. Celebrate an exam down by going on a run or take a shower or watch a (read: ONE) episode of “The Vampire Diaries.”