At the beginning of a new school year, students approach the semester with excitement, anticipation, and eagerness for the new opportunity to have a successful and productive semester. This semester, Maryville College students and students around the world are experiencing a semester like no other.
As expected by all students, a semester is full of hard work and dedication, but with at least a short break. These breaks offer a few days to breathe, take a step back and rejuvenate before finishing out the semester. However, this fall 2020 semester has been a completely different experience for students around the globe.
As I reflect on the semester thus far, with midterms now completed and the “home stretch” fast approaching, I begin to think about how this semester has affected me and the students around me. With several changes and alterations to life on campus, it has been a semester that I, and other students at Maryville College, will never forget.
Being a second-semester freshman, I had high expectations for my first fall semester here on campus. I anticipated an exhilarating and thrilling semester from cheering at football games to weekly Fellowship of Christian Athletes meetings.
Even more than that, I anticipated a short mid-semester break to take some time to reflect on the semester and prepare to finish strong. However, this semester took a turn of events for the safety, health, and protection of students.
With the pandemic, it was going to be impossible to have a normal semester. However, Maryville College has done a phenomenal job at creating an environment for students to still experience the amazing opportunities Maryville College has to offer in a safe, socially distanced environment. Although the annual fall break had to be cancelled to be able to finish classes at a productive rate, I still have found this semester to be an amazing first fall semester experience.
Without the addition of the annual break, I have definitely been more drained from the workload. It has had its ups and downs, but I am also very thankful for the strategic schedule Maryville College has put into place for me and the students on campus to finish at a productive pace, while still remaining safe and healthy on campus.
A semester without breaks has not been the easiest feat, but I have learned to look ahead and realize that as one student body, we will finish strong. Sometimes, it may look like a long journey to the end of the semester. But, in actuality, it is right in reach. As a whole, this new and different semester has taught me a virtue that I will hold onto for years beyond my time here at Maryville College: finish strong, finish well, and do not lose the determination.
As it has seemed difficult for myself and other students at Maryville College to finish this semester at times due to not having a moment to just breathe, we as a student body can all agree that it will be worth it in the end.
As midterms are now complete and the latter half of the semester is in full swing, let us not forget to finish strong and finish well.