I think this is going to be my hardest semester of college. This is semester number 10 for me. I have always taken a full course load. Usually that meant 15-18 credits, though on one notable occasion I did 20. Last semester was the easiest I have ever taken. Only 12 credits, one class was an online that only lasted til October. So, 9 credits for the second half, and one of those was a pretty much guaranteed A as long as I showed up. So, there were really only two classes that required any effort, and by the end, I was doing very little but still making out alright, and I came out with all A’s. Hurray. I would be more excited, but at this point, it’s not a novelty for me anymore. My GPA is 3.9. Getting something other than an A is now unexpected.
But this semester, I will have to work for it. We’re only 3 days in, and I can tell that I’ll actually be spending a great deal of my time outside of work/school doing homework. It’s like the opposite of my senior year of high school. Luckily, I’m actually interested in everything that I’m taking. I finished the (useless) gen eds a few semesters back, so it’s all been major and minor classes for the last year and a half. Well, with French thrown in just for fun.
For one thing, all four classes are actually using all of the books listed on the school bookstore’s website. This is a bummer because it’s expensive. But, it’s also an indication that I will be reading. A lot. Like, a lot, a lot. Currently, I have to read 5 Anthony Lane movie reviews, 3 Woody Allen satiric essays, a host of vaguely dull articles on the class website for editing, and pretty much all of the first chapter of my French textbook. Oh, and Yoga Journal for the magazine writing class. And that’s just the reading.
I feel like I’m complaining. I’m not really. I enjoy reading, and (with the exception of the vaguely dull articles) I am interested in everything we’re reading. I actually already finished the Anthony Lane pieces (well, I’ve got to prepare a 10 minute presentation on them for next Tuesday, so I’ve finished the first read-through), and they’re quite fascinating, despite the fact that I have seen only one of the 5 movies the reviews discuss.
Donc, it’s not really a complaint so much as an acknowledgment that I am about to be very, very busy for the next four months. Also, it’s a bit exciting. It’s been a while since school has actually presented any sort of challenge for me. Is that pretentious? Maybe a smidge, but after 18 years of non-stop education, graduating high school with an unweighted 4.0, and making it through 4 1/2 years of college with a nearly 4.0, I think I’ve earned it.
The only thing tarnishing that idea of a GPA well-earned is that I feel I have rarely been challenged by the American education system. I have trouble deciding if I’m really all that intelligent, or if I’m actually pretty average from a global standpoint, and a lack of really difficult material has made me cocky.
This semester should be interesting.
Random photo: I’m just going to leave this here.