Senioritis: the lack of caring

(Photo by Ryan Hueglin)
(Photo by Ryan Hueglin)

If you’re a senior student like me, distractions, laziness and procrastination are still your worst enemies, even four years after you first started university.  Still, there are always going to be obstacles in your way when trying to do work.  I’ve had the opportunity to ask around and have discovered some mixed reactions from other seniors about behaviour and habits that are hard to avoid.

Fourth year Wilfrid Laurier University student Scott Clay reflected on his years here at WLU and determined that if he were to do his university career over again, he would not skip classes. “Don’t do it,” Clay warned. “Just making sure you go to class is one of the easiest ways to keep what’s going on in class fresh in your head, even if you might not be doing all of your readings.”

Clay’s advice for students who are not in fourth year and who may be in panic mode with assignments and other obligations is not to panic too much.  “Do a little bit of work here and there whenever you can. Go to class.”

I wasn’t convinced, however. To get a varied response, I turned to another friend of mine, Nicole Sguigna, to hear about her own ‘senioritis’ experiences throughout university. Admittedly, Sguigna has had moments where she took advantage of her seniority and did not put an emphasis on her academic studies.

“I wouldn’t say that I take advantage of my seniority, but I most certainly feel as though I’m a ‘senior’ of sorts,” Sguigna explained. “I find myself in younger year courses and feeling much older than everyone else. Even walking around campus, I feel so old and everyone else seems so young. That being said, on occasion I find myself not doing certain things or going certain places because I am in fourth year.”

Squignia reflected on her experiences at university and wished that she had done things differently in terms of her academics and her studies, citing a lack of time and effort as the main regret.

“I never weeded out giving myself enough time to not only complete projects but to just have fun and enjoy my time in university through volunteering, and creating a social network. I always planned to change this throughout my four years but I always put it off, telling myself I’ll do it next year,” Sguigna said. “Now four years have gone by and I’m slowly realizing that I should have just taken more time. Also, I wish I had utilized my professors far more than what I did. I thought, initially, that all I was was a number to them but coming from a major like religion — I have realized that they want to get to know us and help us as much as possible.”

One could say that one of the worst student habits would have to be procrastination. Putting off something that you know you should be doing is guaranteed to get you into more tight academic situations than you thought it would and you will regret it.

And no matter how many times you have told yourself that you will grow out of this comfortable bad habit and put more of an effort into your work, you soon discover that you always slip back into this bad behaviour. It is a cycle that is very hard to break.

As a senior student, you will without a doubt feel much more confident around campus, especially when you have to push through an onslaught of first years blocking hallways, and when you go to the Library to study, finding a spot is never a problem.

However, this feeling of power on campus amongst your peers should not give you a free pass to slack in your studies. There are always going to be distractions, and ignoring those facts won’t change anything. A big problem for many others and myself is to remember to focus on the task at hand.

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