Archive for December, 2008

New Year’s Resolutions

It’s that time of the year again. Now that you’ve written your Annual Review, it’s time to bundle your thoughts together and look forward to the new year.

Chances are, you know how to make a standard list, and may or may not have accomplished them (provided that you even remember your list).

I’m not going to try to reinvent the wheel, but instead point out some new ways of writing our that set of “resolutions” and strongly suggesting resolutions that should make it to your list this year.

If you’re looking for a new take on the New Year’s Resolutions list, this is the post for you.

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Commentary: SAT Changes Policy, Opening Rift With Colleges

NY Times article: SAT Changes Policy, Opening Rift With Colleges

“In some respect,” Mr. Fitzsimmons said, “Score Choice will help defuse some of the pressure and give students a sense that not everything is riding on the tests, which really is the case.”

While I see this as a sly business tactic, allowing students to choose which scores to send will probably reduce stress all around, especially since the SATs are now a what… 4-5 hour long test with a 15 minute snack break? However, perhaps, more inequality and inefficiency?

Having only one more set of Standardized Testing to go through and repressing my memories of the SAT, I would deem my reaction as slightly positive, but mostly neutral.

Overall: Upgrade! Colleges supposedly consider just the top scores anyway.

Your thoughts? Yay? Nay?

Your Personal Annual Review

For those heading out to the Real World, the Annual Review is a time for both employer and employee to reflect, grow and learn from one another.

It’s a way to re-remember what the hell happened in mid-February and grow from your learning “opportunities.”

Because December is coming to a close, take some time to write an annual review for yourself.

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Happy Holidays / Winter Break!

Relax. Sleep for 12 hours a day. Become nocturnal. Get less than 10% of whatever you had planned actually done. Watch the achronological House marathon. Catch up on all two seasons of Chuck. Help the American /European /International economy.

Eat ginger bread cookies. Play in the snow? sand? foothills.

Ignore your post it notes.

Regular blog posts will be returning at the beginning of January.

I promise I’ll return with some crazy life / school / reading period hackery techniques.

I’m saying bu-bye to that design lab paper that I thought I’d have mostly written (thanks for taking my survey by the way), sooo that means you should too!

Keep Your Computer Working for You: Minimize Sadness

While I’m not the techiest of all, I’m astonished by how people treat their computers on campus. I hear horror stories of people dropping their computers, scarier stories of people sending their computers to get fixed, and sad stories of Justice papers getting lost.

If you aren’t sure what preemptive measures you should be taking with your computer, this post is for you. Read more…

How You Know You’ve Chosen the Right Concentration

After talking with other juniors who are relatively happy with their concentrations, I’ve slowly realized that there is one common trait:

You enjoy the work you’re supposed to do for your concentration

This should perhaps be a “duh,” but it can be fairly easy to ignore this preference when you’re juggling other concentrations based on say, future prosperity. I’m an econ major because I really enjoyed doing the problem sets in Ec 10 (and fancy that, Ec classes have a fair amount of problem sets). I am not a math concentrator because I absolutely dreaded each problem set. I am not a philosophy concentrator (despite really liking philosophy) because I couldn’t imagine myself writing philosophy papers for the rest of my time here.

My math concentrator friends generally really enjoy their math problem sets. My CPB friend really enjoyed orgo. My history concentrator friend would happily check out a 2 foot stack of books from the library whenever she had to write a paper.

Pay attention to your mood when you’re doing homework. If you’re happily reading about linguistics or happily writing papers about social norms, then you probably know already what would be a major that would make you happy.

It’s super easy to be interested in many, many subjects (and enjoy lectures on many of said subjects), but chances are, you probably actually enjoy doing the work in just a few of them.

That’s all folks!

Harvard is Great When You’re Not Stressed Out

Coming back from Thanksgiving break can be a bit of a shocker. Turkey break is a wonderful time to chill out, eat food, ignore homework etc. etc., but getting back onto campus can be painful especially if you’re facing a mountain of work.

Somehow, this is one of the few times, I’ve managed to come back from break without actually facing a mountain of midterms / papers / psets / blahblah. I’ve discovered, funny enough, that Harvard is a fantastic place to be when you’re not stressed out.

There are interesting people about, good conversations to be had, fun events to go to, lots of ways to amuse yourself. But when you’re stressed, Harvard just seems like a dreary place.

If Harvard is lame, it’s because you’re making it that way.

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