A Better Finals Week

Drew Houx
Class of: 

Thanks for taking a break from your Facebook recommended BuzzFeed article to read this blogpost. Unlike those articles, I hope that this one can actually improve your chances of having a great Finals Week.

Contrary to the popular belief that a student must lock themselves away in the Owen D. Young Library until it is time to pack up their room and leave for the summer, the best way to accomplish Finals Week is by taking advantage of the St. Lawrence community. This year, you should take a different approach to the stressful week by looking into what's happening on campus. Here are just a few ways being a St. Lawrence student can lower your stress, help you focus, and boost your GPA.

While the entire student body, staff, and faculty are slightly more stressed during Finals Week, the entire community can take a moment to connect with one another. For many of us, this is the last opportunity to enjoy time with the seniors that will be graduating later this May. This means that you should capitalize on the opportunities to connect with the people around you. For this upcoming week, look out for:

  • Doggy Destress Day: “The better I get to know men, the more I find myself loving dogs.” - Charles de Gaulle. When you are tired of dealing with people, find a dog. It is always a highlight to have dozens of local puppies join us on campus to relax us from our exams. It has been scientifically proven that human-dog interactions can lower your stress and clear your mind. So, find a four-legged friend to help you through the stressful week!
  • Holi: All of those textbooks are black and white, but that doesn't mean your life has to be, too. On Saturday, May 6 at 12 p.m., join A.S.I.A Club on the Java Quad to celebrate the Hindu "Festival of Color." The A.S.I.A Club will have over 50 pounds of 10 different colors to throw in the air. This is a perfect opportunity to get out of the books and distract yourself with a color party. Hopefully being covered with several colors can bring some light to the rest of your Finals Week!
  • Late Nights Finals Breakfast: Sponsored by Thelmo, you should go to the student center and get some bacon and eggs to fuel yourself for the inevitable all-nighter. This is a great chance to get out of the stuffy library and relax for an hour with your friends.

While connecting with the community is a great way to clear your head during Finals Week, another great way to excel through your stressful week is to focus on what you can learn. This might be the byproduct of not paying attention throughout the semester or deciding to complete your SYE, but there are a few ways that you can learn new strategies in this final stretch of the semester.

  • Study Groups: Getting involved with a study group is one of the best ways to get an understanding of how much you truly remember from the semester. Most likely, other students are looking for an opportunity to get together and go over class notes, so don’t hesitate to reach out and set up your own study group.
  • New Study Space: Study spaces in ODY can become some high priced real estate during Finals Week, but that does not mean you have to fight for the last rooms. In fact, every academic building on campus has 24-hour access throughout Finals Week. This means that you can venture out and find your own private classroom and take a break from your typical spot.

Lastly, finals are the culmination of a hard semester’s work. Use this week as an opportunity to celebrate all those hours spent reviewing power points and editing research papers. With the warmer weather coming in, it is a great time to get outside and recognize your hard work. Especially for the students graduating in a few weeks, this is the ideal time to celebrate your years of commitment to St. Lawrence.

  • Canoe Shack: The Canoe Shack is one of the hidden gems on campus; take a stroll down to the river and grab a canoe with a friend. There is no experience necessary! Even taking an hour out of your afternoon to get in a canoe and see different scenery will go a long way in ensuring the success of your stressful week.
  • Kip and Saddlemire Trails: The flat, seven-kilometer loop is the perfect way to get exercise and clear your head during the stressful week. One of the best ways to feel better, relax yourself, and get some fresh air is to take a lap around the Kip and Saddlemire Trails.

While the semester comes to a close and the workload increases, do not forget to utilize the community around you to make the most of the stressful time. Finals never get easier, but you can make this year’s test better by getting outside the library to connect with friends, learn from other students, and celebrate your hard work so far. Good luck on those exams and have a great Finals Week!