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Lauren

I have become quite seasoned at this whole college thing.  A lot of what I have learned about being successful in college has been through trial and error.  When I first started college, I took as many credit hours as I could, sometimes 18 at a time.  For some majors this is the norm; however, with my busy lifestyle, I was unable to keep my grades where I would like them to be.  I also tried online classes so that I would have the flexibility of not having to go to class, but I was unable to keep up with all the due dates without having a teacher present to remind me.  It wasn’t until I was determined to succeed that I was able to be the best student I could. I take all of my classes online in the Pathways Program so it is imperative that I stay on top of my assignments.  For example, I have a binder.  I know it may sound weird but it helps me stay on track.  I have a calendar with due dates as well as the syllabus for every class I am taking and any important papers I might need to reference.  I don’t always have the time to get online and check my email or Blackboard but I can make sure I am current on what assignments I need to work on by just checking my binder.  A game-changer for me was choosing a major that I was passionate about.  By actually caring about the material and what I am learning, I am motivated to do my very best.  There will always be bumps along the way, but with passion and organization, I will cross that finish line.

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Music plays a huge role in my life. From a young age, I was listening to The Beatles and my tastes have grown since. I will admit that when I think back to what I was listening to when I was thirteen, I cringe a little. I don’t know how my parents allowed me to listen to Hanson or Savage Garden. These days, I listen to a variety of music and each serves a purpose for me. I like to listen to the more upbeat, pop music when I’m cleaning or getting ready for a night out. I often refer to these as “dance parties.” There’s typically more dancing and loud singing than there is cleaning.  I drive 45 minutes to work and 45 minutes home each day so I have a “driving” playlist in my iTunes.  Depending on my mood, I either play songs that I can belt it out to or songs that help get my energy up in preparation for what will be a rough day.  It’s interesting that I always sound EXACTLY like Katy Perry, Ke$ha, or Florence Welch when I’m in the car!!  I almost always have music playing while I’m doing my homework.  I used to listen to Pandora but sometimes a song would come on and I felt like Pandora didn’t know me at all!  Now I listen to Spotify regularly.  Sometimes I will pick an artist at random and make a radio station or I’ll just listen to all the songs ever made by an artist.  I like to listen to low-key music while studying so that I don’t get too distracted.  My favorite band to listen to while doing homework: Death Cab for Cutie.  My favorite band to listen to after a break up: Dashboard Confessional.  My favorite artist to listen to while working out: Skrillex.  My tastes are all over the board but each band or artist I listen to speaks to me in a way that is unique for me.  I believe that is what makes music so wonderful; it can bring us all together but serve a different purpose to each individual.

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2014 is a very big year for me.  Some might be thinking I am graduating this year; not just yet I’m not.  This year I will be turning 30.  The big 3-0.  A time where people will joke that I am approaching being “over the hill” because they think it’s funny.  There is a part of me that is FREAKING OUT about beginning my third decade of life.  So, I am using that fear to make 2014 the most fun year of my life thus far.  In order to achieve this goal, I have started a  list of things to do.  While this is an ever-growing list (I do have a whole year after all) here are some of the things I would like to do: go ice skating at Steinberg, go to a winery, play bingo, take more pictures with my actual camera… and the list goes on.  I am sure some of these things many people have already done and that’s why they are on my list.  I feel like I am going to turn 30 and I haven’t done a lot of the things people my age have done.  Life gets chaotic and messy while trying to work, go to school, take care of a family, and still find time to go out and enjoy myself.  So this is the year that enjoying myself comes first; I’m ready to experience a year’s worth of fun and memories.

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Students writing for Real Life at Fontbonne are paid a small fee for each post by the university.