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The Beginning of the End (of the Semester)

Figure out how to spend your last few weeks

December 4, 2018 9:08 AM

In case the 20- degree weather hasn’t clued you in, it’s almost winter. Which means it’s almost winter break. Which means we have one full week of classes left, and I don’t know about you guys, but I am mildly freaking out. So, with the 1.5 weeks of classes before finals week, how should you be spending your time?

If you’re the kind of student that has very few exams and  final projects left to do, congratulations. I’m very jealous. But, you’re in a spot where you can spend some serious time thinking about what you want to do over the summer. Maybe you’re waiting to hear back from industry internships; maybe you’re getting ready to apply for research positions. Whatever it may be, follow up on those emails, send out those resumes, make a spreadsheet to keep track of it all, and revel in the glory of being able to relax while your fellow students are running around like chickens with their heads cut off.

If you’re the kind of student that has a bunch of exams, but feels like the workload is under control, good job. That being said, don’t substitute comfort for complacency. Make sure you know what assignments you have to complete and exams you have to study for. Career-wise, this isn’t the time to throw all your effort behind getting a summer job, but that doesn’t mean to slack off entirely. Maybe go to a few events during free hour, and definitely respond to any recruiters reaching out to you. If you have a few extra minutes here and there, check Linkedin. But your top priority should be securing the best possible grades over the next few days.

If you’re the kind of student wondering how they are going to make it to winter break without imploding from stress, we’ve all been there. For the next 2.5 weeks, put worries about summer work completely out of your head. The only thing you should do is respond to emails and phone calls. You’ll have plenty of time over winter break to schedule interviews and apply for positions. But right now, make a list of everything you have to get done, get off myUMBC (I appreciate the readership, but not the procrastination), and get started. The more you do, the more manageable things will seem.

You’re almost there! Check back here next week for my guide on setting winter break career goals. Until then, make sure you’re sleeping and eating. Go to a Skills 4 Success workshop or make yourself a finals care package. Good luck with the last hurdle.
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