College gives you choices and those choices can help express your identity.  Will you be the kid always 15 minutes early to class?  Will you be the social butterfly of the school?  Will you keep your schoolwork a priority or let it drift off to the waste side?

A balance can be struck between keeping a great GPA and having a social life.  Freshmen may not believe in such a thing.  Some enter a hard semester of courses and quickly become overwhelmed.  The key to this is both managing your time well and staying organized.

First, try getting a planner.  This comes in various forms: a whiteboard, a booklet planner or a calendar, either electronic or physical.  Add in your class schedule, and then look for the empty blocks of time in your week.  Do you have a day off?  Do you have a few mornings, afternoons, or evenings open?  Weigh your workload and your speed of completing homework, and figure out how many blocks of time you need to finish your homework.  Dedicating specific blocks of time to study ensures that your work will get done.

“Wake up early and do your school work, that way you can have a social life,” one senior from Penn State suggests.

A junior from California State University of Monterey Bay comments balancing school and friends is not hard if you have the right people in your social life.  Finding friends who influence you in a positive way and keep you driven is important.

For many, doing homework right after class while information is fresh in your mind can lead to a stress-free academic life.  You will never forget about an assignment and will keep your free time actually free.

Personally, I write in my planner that each class is one or two hours longer than it is, this way I can complete all of my homework.  If classes are back to back, adding a study block of time towards the end of the week tends to balance things out.

Stay organized and remember college is the most exciting time in your life.  Enjoy it, just don’t go overboard!


I’m reading The Career Fitness Program: Exercising Your Options