When Term 1 started a year ago, I had a plan — a study plan. It was complete with a fancy calendar, freshly purchased from Staples. This “plan” outlined which days I would study, when I would work late and when I would have time for friends and family. Much like a New Year’s resolution, the “plan” didn’t really last all that long. Life got in the way, and all of a sudden I was studying during work time, working during study time, and making the most of any free time I could find. From talking to my classmates over the last year, it seems like we all started with a system to try to organize this very busy time in our lives. Each of us has come to learn that study time just has to be squeezed into our busy schedules, in very small blocks of time. For me, this has meant that my books have come with me on all sorts of fun adventures, so that I’d be prepared whenever 30 minutes of “free” time became available to study.
As it’s now Memorial Day Weekend, almost exactly a year after I began this program, I thought I would take a look back at all the fun places that my textbooks have accompanied me:
- July 2012 – Virginia Beach, VA: I was accompanied by a stack of articles for Global Markets and Institutions class … these may or may not have come into contact with alcoholic beverages on the beach. Still readable though!
- September 2012 – Wrightsville Beach, NC: With my financial accounting textbook. I was on team calls about work-in-process inventory accounting in between family outings at the beach.
- November 2012 — Leesburg, VA: I was with my statistics course pack, studying in the kitchen while my mom made Thanksgiving dinner. I’m a great helper. I’m sure she really appreciated me just sitting there.
- January 2013 – Road trip to Toronto, Ontario: My backseat was full of Term 3 textbooks. My best friend decided to have her first child during the coldest month in Canada. So up I went to visit during a major snowstorm. I managed to read managerial accounting and marketing cases while holding her son Hudson, so she could nap. I’m still waiting on my friend-of-the-year award.
- February 2013 – Wintergreen, VA: The Term 3 marketing case came snowboarding with my boyfriend and me. It also came with us to the doctor the next day as we got an X-ray of Jon’s broken arm.
- May 2013 – Toronto, Ontario (take 2): Various electronic course articles on my iPad flew up with me for Memorial Day weekend. I’m spending another couple of days with my best friend and her son Hudson. Actually, I think I’ll inquire about my friend-of-the-year award while I’m up here …
And finally … a trip where my textbooks got left at home:
- March 2013 – San Juan, Puerto Rico: After I managed to take all of the Term 3 finals in the first four days of the exam block, I got a textbook free vacation … until I arrived home to find a box of Term 4 readings and books waiting for me on my porch.
So the plan is that there is no plan. You’ll have to take it one day at a time and make sure you reserve space in your carry on for your books!
I live in Richmond, Virginia, where I work as a senior manager of financial analysis at Capital One. I am pursuing my MBA to focus on improving my leadership and soft skills, to help me continue to advance within finance at Capital One.