First Week Back

I’ve now been back at university for my final year for a week now and although it can get a bit overwhelming trying to process all the work I have coming up, I’m looking forward to this semester.

I’m taking 19 credit hours, which is quite a lot, but I want to make sure I graduate on time. I’m taking conservation of biodiversity, introduction to physics (which also includes a recitation and lab), elementary organic chemistry (which also includes a recitation and lab), environmental ethics, writing for the professions and leadership in the life sciences. This sounds like a lot, but in reality, most of my days are only about four hours (except Tuesdays, we don’t talk about Tuesdays) and are over by early afternoon, giving me the rest of the day to do homework, work or just relax.

Conservation of biodiversity seems a lot like a class I took abroad (but for whatever reason, they wouldn’t transfer that course as an equivalent), but the topic still interests me and the professor has worked all around the world, so I’m looking forward to speaking with him about his career.

Basic physics is required as a general credit. I’m dreading it because the lectures are a bit dry and I’m not very good at math, but as this is an introductory course, I reckon I’ll do just fine.

I wanted to minor in chemistry, so I took one semester of general organic chemistry. After I barely passed that class, I realized that may not be for me. My major requires one semester of elementary organic chemistry but unfortunately, one of two semesters of general organic chemistry could not fulfill that credit, so here I am. On the bright side, the professor insists that it’s easy to succeed in her class.

Environmental ethics will probably be my most interesting class. The readings are engaging and my professor is lively. I like to touch on other areas of social sciences and apply it to environmental science and this course will give me a good glimpse into the philosophy of environmentalism.

My online English class (focused on writing in the workplace rather than academically) seems easy enough. I’ve taken online classes in the past and have gotten really great marks.

Finally, my leadership in the life sciences course meets twice a week. On Wednesday afternoons, I mentor a small group of life science freshman and help them transition into university life by setting goals, letting them know about life science involvement, and more. Later that day, I go to a class reviewing my progress and discuss next week’s goals. Although it’s a lot more little assignments to stay on top of compared to the United Kingdom system, the grading is much more forgiving and I’m sure I’ll get a rhythm down soon.

I got hired as an usher at a Broadway theater on campus halfway through my freshman year and as an usher for student events at the beginning of my sophomore year. I’ve done the onboarding for the second job and I’m pretty confident I’m getting my first job back, as well. However, I won’t start working until September.

Now that I’ve been in my new place for a few weeks now, I’ve gotten to know my roommates a little bit better and we get on really well. I wouldn’t say they’re my new best friends, but we’re all really friendly.

I am involved in several societies: Global Guides, where I help international students, both at general events and one-on-one, and Central Arizona Chapter Society for Conservation Biology, which has its first meeting Monday. I’m excited to do volunteer work and get field experience!

I enjoy the little free time I have by watching films and television shows, reading, working out and cooking.

I still can’t believe I’m in the final year of my Bachelor’s degree, but I’m determined to not let it pass me by!




  1. Joan Foster
    August 26, 2016 / 3:45 am

    Wow, that sounds like pretty heavy load!! I’m sure you will do well!! Take care and I look forward to your next post.
    All my love,

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