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cadet blogs

Cold Times Ahead

(Academics, Class of 2012) Permanent link   All Posts
Mark Zanowicz It’s September here in New London. It’s a time when air is just starting to get that little chill in it that hints a brisk fall is just around the corner. Likewise, classes are in full swing and I’m starting to get that same little chill about the tests, quizzes, and projects that are in store this semester.

2/c year as a Marine Environmental Science major is slightly different than my other semesters have been. As a 4/c, I felt constantly loaded down with work. Performing the balancing act between a full schedule of classes, military obligations like maintaining an immaculate uniform and studying required knowledge (or indoc as we call it), as well as trying to get enough sleep, was quite taxing. I had to budget my time perfectly just to get everything done.

However, now that I’m a 2/c I actually feel as though the workload is quite a bit less. I’m only taking five classes this semester for a total of 17.5 credit hours. While that may sound like quite a load for any other college, it’s not bad at all compared to many of my classmates. There is no doubt, however, that my classes this year are much more difficult than in years past. As a 4/c taking classes like Chemistry and Leaders in U.S. History, you’re likely to come in with a least a rudimentary knowledge of the subjects at hand. But now? I can sit through an entire class of Ocean Dynamics and have no idea what how to make sense of what you were just told. I see some symbols go on the board, I hear a few things that my brain tells me are logical, and yet I still find myself walking out of class sometimes and asking “whoa – what just happened?” It’s the nature of the classes, really. The tests are more demanding. The textbooks feel more cryptic. I have the time to study, but the difficulty level is intimidating.

Paradoxically, having more time now actually means I need tighter time management skills, not more relaxed ones. I often find myself with the dilemma of whether I should read my textbooks or load up my Instant Queue on Netflix and see how many TV episodes I can squeeze in before class. Considering the subject of this entry, it’s probably pretty obvious which one usually wins out. Regardless, I’m still keeping ahead well enough, and if nothing else, I feel like I’ll come out of this semester with some real knowledge about stuff I’m actually interested in.

More about Mark.