We had the opportunity of interviewing Meera Parikh, a junior at Georgetown University, about: Balanced Life and College Life
In high school, Meera was involved in track, tutoring, and coaching Girls on the Run. In college, she does intramural soccer, South Asian dance, and GlobeMed (a global health club). Meera is passionate about pandemic preparedness and global health security and hopes to be involved in advocacy and public policy after she graduates.
Here are some key points she shares:
I like to work in blocks, and I definitely think it’s beneficial to plan breaks into studying. I also try to work on things based on how I’m feeling.
I still felt a major change between high school and college, mostly in the volume of work I had. For example, instead of reading a book every few weeks in my English class, we had to read 1-2 books per week.
Q: How did you give yourself time to rest and refresh in high school and college?
A: I try to schedule time to rest and relax whenever possible because I know I am much more productive when I am well rested and focused. I usually don’t do homework on Fridays and I try to spend time with friends and doing things I enjoy on the weekends, even though I usually have a lot of work to do too. Even on the weekdays, I like to take shorter breaks, like going for a run, or studying with friends, so I don’t feel as stressed.
Q: How would you describe the campus culture of Georgetown?
A: Georgetown’s culture is very studious, but most students are very passionate about what they do. I think people get excited to talk about their major and their interests and they take academics very seriously. However, people are also very collaborative and will go out of their way to help others and work together. Students are also very active in extracurricular activities and make time for their passions outside of academics, which provides for a very well-rounded atmosphere.
Q: What is your work ethic? (blocking things, using a planner, taking short breaks, finishing something when you start it, etc.)
A: I like to work in blocks and I definitely think it’s beneficial to plan breaks into studying. I also try to work on things based on how I’m feeling. For example, I know that I get really tired when I read at night, so I try to do my readings in the mornings or afternoons. In terms of organization, I keep track of my assignments on Google Calendar, that way I can see them from my phone or laptop and everything is in one place.
Q: How would you compare courses in college with those in high school?
A: I was lucky to go to a rigorous high school, which prepared me well for college. However, I still felt a major change between high school and college, mostly in the volume of work I had. For example, instead of reading a book every few weeks in my English class, we had to read 1-2 books per week. Also, instead of having frequent tests, in college, exams are only a few times per semester but are worth a large percentage of the grade and cover a lot of material.
Q: How do you balance between your extracurriculars in college and your academics?
A: The great thing about college is that the extracurricular activities you do are entirely up to you. You don’t need to worry about what your parents want you to do or what will look good for college applications. I was able to choose activities that worked with my schedule and that I genuinely enjoyed, which made it very easy to fit them with my academics. I tend to choose lower commitment clubs and activities so that if I do have a busy week, I can skip a meeting or practice and not feel guilty about it. Also, if I find that I am not enjoying an activity, I will try something else instead. I try to keep my extracurriculars low pressure and only for my own enjoyment.
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