Four Weeks In: What I’ve Learned

by Olivia Miller
Usually fall semester seems to go by slower than spring semester, but four weeks have already passed at K-State, making it ¼ of the way. Things are in full swing, our office has 20+ appointments a day, class projects are due, and family members are already asking me when I start job searching. Four weeks may seem like a short time, but during this time I have already learned a few things about myself, my work and my future. So, for the four weeks of school that have passed, here are the four most important things I have learned.
  1. I enjoy going to work more than class. My work both at ACIC and K-State First is more meaningful and exciting than sitting in class. Working with and for students, and watching them develop, is why I went into this line of work, and sometimes it is difficult to sit through class. I have always considered myself someone who enjoys classes and learning, but right now I am learning and applying more when I am working and not in the classroom.
  2. Effective change takes time. In my office there are a lot of changes going on – half of our staff is new, we have new office procedures and we are moving buildings next semester. While these changes are exciting, it takes time for a proper transition and I should not expect things to be perfect right away.
  3. Work/life balance is a constant work in process. I am trying my best to work no more than my expected 20 hours a week, as well as not checking my e-mail after 5 p.m. This has not been easy, but it is necessary for me to not feel burnout. Next semester this will be put to the test with everything put on my plate on top of job searching, but as they say practice makes perfect.
  4. Leaving K-State will be more difficult than I previously imagined. K-State has become my home, the people I work with my family and for the first time this week it hit me that I will eventually leave. As ready as I am for something new and different, I need to embrace my last few months here, and let my appreciation for this special place be known.
Now, of course, there is still plenty of time left in the semester for lessons – both in and out of the classroom, but I wanted to share what these four week have taught me. What have you learned in your first weeks?

Student Affairs - the First Years

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