Choosing a major is one of the most important decisions in one’s college career. Unfortunately, it’s also one of the first choices students are pressured to make. And the ramifications for selecting a pathway inappropriate for you vary wildly, from adding on a semester to catch up on classes, to going back to school years later. Therefore it’s critical that you decide on a major that both satisfies your interests and secures your economic future. In my case, I simply lacked the experience to say for certain exactly what I was interested in. My parents were willing to support me in whatever career path I chose, which was very kind but ultimately placed greater responsibility on me to enroll in a program that was compelling and feasible. I ended up selecting a major that aligned with where I believed my skills lay, namely, English—with the caveat that I would return to the matter after my first year at UD.
Over the course of two semesters, I managed to explore a variety of topics within and beyond my selected field of study. I took classes in subjects that had always interested me but were not offered in my previous schooling, all the while fulfilling a collection of breadth requirements I would need to complete regardless. By the conclusion of this investigative period, I had finally landed upon an avenue of study that I had always trended towards, but never thought to pursue: Computer Science. However, the idea of altering such a fundamental aspect of my college education appeared quite daunting. I feared that I might go about this process incorrectly as a consequence of my own ignorance, hindering my ability to take required courses or even delaying my graduation date. I wasted valuable time mulling over my decision and attempting to research the necessary steps. Continue reading
In most college courses, classes consist of lectures, note-taking, and group assignments. But every so often students are required to demonstrate their knowledge publicly, in the form of an oral presentation. These occur so infrequently that many are unfamiliar with the strategies necessary to put on an engaging and informational presentation, or are out of practice with the behaviors of a skilled presenter. Fortunately, my high school afforded me plenty of opportunities to sharpen my proficiency in this vocation, and in this blog post I would like to share some of the techniques I have learned both through experience and mentorship.
There are certain practices that are familiar to all college students; chief among them being the “all-nighter.” In our hectic lives, sleep is often the first resource abandoned in favor of studying or hanging with friends. This is a real shame, because sleep is far more significant to an individual’s well-being than most people realize. In this post, I’m going to make the case for sleep, and ideally open a few eyes to the necessity of this forgotten practice.
Let’s start with the basics: what is sleep? A good night’s rest can be broken down into 5 phases, which are cycled through repeatedly as one sleeps. As we progress through these stages, the body moves into an increasingly deeper sleep, until finally reaching REM sleep. It is at this point that we experience dreams. So called “deep sleep” and REM are the most critical phases, and receiving an adequate amount of each is necessary to feel rested in the morning. In fact, if an individual is suddenly awoken during REM sleep, their body will instinctually move directly into that phase the next time the person sleeps. And while this is all fascinating, it isn’t entirely clear why we sleep. That said, the effects of sleep deprivation are evident and worrisome. Continue reading
I can hardly ever remember taking notes in high school. Besides a few select AP courses, notes simply weren’t critical to my academic success. I imagine the same is true for many of my fellow honors freshman, who have managed to perform well without developing this important skill. But circumstances change, and we now find ourselves in a demanding intellectual environment. It’s time to adapt, and that means becoming effective note-takers.
Perhaps you are of the opinion that this subject doesn’t warrant much discussion, much less an entire blog post. After all, note-taking is just copying what a teacher says, right? Unfortunately, there is a lot more nuance to this topic than there may seem. While you can still thrive by transcribing everything you see on a chalkboard, you are wasting time and effort by failing to adopt more efficient practices. So I implore you to read on, and consider implementing the following techniques into your regular note-taking. Continue reading