Ka’Turah Francis ’17
Hometown: Ashburn, Virginia
Major: Political Philosophy
Do you have any tips for time management as a Syracuse student?
Time management is very important in college, because when you have to balance school work, clubs, and maybe even a job, it can become a lot to handle. Obviously the most important thing is school work. The amount of work that a student has really depends on their classes and their majors, so how they should manage their time will differ from student to student. My advice in general is to write out a schedule that includes class times, club meeting times, and work times. If a student works, their schedule could change from week to week, but for the most part, their class schedule and club meeting times should stay the same.
I would advise students to use the gaps and free time they have in their schedule during the week to work on any homework and projects they have assigned. Because all classes aren’t back to back, there will be times where the student may have a couple of hours in between class to grab a snack and work on an assignment. It pays off to work on a few things over the course of the day rather than saving it all for night time and staying up late. There is also the weekend to do homework, of course, but I recommend doing as much work as possible by Friday, because with all of the events that Syracuse has to offer, it is nice to be able to spend the weekends having fun and relaxing rather than cramming in homework. It’ll also help in case one of the clubs that the student is involved in is having a weekend activity that they will need to attend. Time management really just requires the student to stay organized and keep track of how much time they really have during the week to get everything done.
Do you have advice for incoming students as they’re packing for their move to campus?
My advice for incoming students as they pack to move to campus is to really sort out the clothes they know they will wear often from clothes that they do not wear as much. When I packed for college, I packed everything because I thought I would wear all of it, but in the end I ended up wearing maybe half of the things I packed. Especially going to Syracuse, which is one of the coldest cities, my wardrobe consisted of leggings, yoga pants, sweats, and sweaters during the winter months. I was more concerned with bundling up than I was about looking cute for my classes. It is also smart to leave some of the heavier clothing behind and bring it back after Thanksgiving or winter break. Although Syracuse gets cold earlier in the school year, I could have saved a lot of packing space by waiting until break to bring back my winter clothing. Lastly, my advice to students who own a lot of T-shirts would be to pick maybe the top 10 favorites!
Do you have any tips for budgeting living in Syracuse?
I would say that to budget in Syracuse, it takes a lot of self-control. There are a numerous amounts of places to eat in the city of Syracuse and the University offers so many events that are low in price, but may add up if you commit to all of them. A good way to budget, though, is to set a limit for each month of how much is able to be spent on food and recreation, making sure that there is money left over to save. I am still learning how to budget myself, but what I usually do is take care of all of the important expenses, such as textbooks and any school related supplies, and then I choose a few events that I really want to go to instead of trying to do it all. I’ll eat out once or twice a month now because the food on Marshall Street and at Dinosaur BBQ is delicious, but can add up!
What is the healthiest way for a college student to cope with homesickness?
I think the healthiest way for a college student to deal with homesickness is to get involved with activities on campus and participate in activities held by their dorms or their floor. The majority of homesickness in college students is due to the transition from a place of comfort where they have their parents and people they grew up with, to a place that is supposed to become their temporary home, where mostly everyone begins as a stranger.
Since all students new to college are in the same boat, it helps to spend time with those people, because they, too, are seeking out friends and trying to find their place in college. When students start feeling at ease in this new place, they will think less and less about home, because they will find the happiness and comfort they were searching for through college. It is important for new college students to know that homesickness is normal and many people experience it when going to college. But it’s important that they find healthy ways to cope with the homesickness to make their overall college experience a positive one.