A Week in the Life of Rachel

Google Calendar is my life. I don’t think I can survive college without it. I plan out my homework sessions, classes, rehearsals, Bonner meetings, and even my meals occasionally on my calendar. Here’s a weekly view of my Google Calendar this week:
 
Here’s the breakdown:

Monday/Wednesday/Friday classes:
9:40am-10:40am – GEOL 194 – Geology: Planet Earth
It is a lecture based class taught by a visiting professor. I’m not particularly good at science and I really don’t know what to make of this class yet, so I believe I will use the pass/fail grading option for this class. (Each semester, we get to choose 1 class for the pass/fail option.)

12:00pm-1:00pm – MATH 135 – Applied Multivariable Calculus I
I decided to take Calc 1 because I felt like I was taking my AP Calc class just to get a decent grade, so might as well take it again! To be honest, Calc 1 is actually nothing like AP Calc; we do a ton of coding-like activities on a program called RStudio.

Tuesday/Thursday classes:
I don’t have morning classes, but I will be doing my Bonner work-study in the mornings from 9am to 12pm beginning in October.

1:20pm-2:50pm – POLI 294 – Civic Ideals and Higher Education in America (First Year Course)
This course is co-taught by a Political Science professor and the president of Macalester. Compared to my other classes, this class is very reading-heavy and writing intensive; however, I do think that the readings are very interesting. Some articles I have read discusses the purpose of higher education and the original purpose of a liberal arts college. Although this class gives me a ton of homework, I actually think it is my favorite class this semester. I can see that my writing and my ability to write reflection papers is improving with every paper that I submit.

3:00pm-4:30pm – HISP 305 – Intro to Hispanic Studies: Oral and Written Expression
I could have opted out of taking a language class because of my AP Spanish Language score, but it feels awkward for me not to take a language so I continued with Spanish. Depending on what happens in the future, I may decided to minor in Spanish, and this course is the first course that counts towards a major/minor in Spanish. At the beginning of the school year, I actually debated between this class and the Spanish class one level lower. My placement score landed on the high end of the range that is recommended for the Spanish 204 class, and with the advice of the Hispanic Studies department chair (who is now my Spanish professor), I decided to challenge myself and enroll in level 305. At first, I felt like I was the only student who cannot speak Spanish fluently in class, but I slowly realized that speaking is the strong point of others while writing is my strong point. My Spanish professor calls on people to answer questions on the spot each class. While it is very intimidating to me, it forces me to actively listen in class and practice my speaking skills, regardless of how embarrassing it could be occasionally.

4:45-6:15pm – Macalester Chorale
I decided not to audition for the smaller choir (Concert Choir) this year because of its time commitment, so I joined the Chorale as a first soprano. The Chorale has around 60 members and we practice twice a week for 1.5 hours each rehearsal. Our first performance will be early October during Family weekend; we will be performing around 5 pieces. (If you look at Saturday’s schedule, you will see a trip to the mall- I will be buying my concert attire then)

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Even from looking at the class descriptions above, you can probably guess that I’m a social sciences and humanities person. Math and natural sciences are not my strong points at all, and I’m just taking those two courses to get my requirements over with before actually considering another course in those departments. I’m hoping to major in International Studies and minor in Spanish, but it’s possible that I might change majors or add minors also.

As far as homework goes, I try to do most of my work on Mon/Wed/Fri since I only have 2 one-hour classes on those days. I aim for 6-7 hours of homework time on those 3 days and 3-4 hours of homework on Tue/Thurs. My study buddy, Jennifer (also a Bonner), and I have decided to make Friday nights a homework night because that’s when everyone is off doing something else, so all the study spots are super quiet. We try to do some work on weekend mornings too so that we have the afternoons and evenings free.

On weekends, Jennifer and I usually go out to eat or explore new places (from the past pics of Midtown Global Market, Mall of America, Minnesota State Fair, etc). This Saturday, we will go to Rosedale Mall to buy my concert attire and just check out the area. On Sunday, both of us will attend a CPR training course that’s being offered on campus.

Stay tuned for my next post! It’ll be about the Bonner work-study program! 🙂

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