Fri, 12 Aug 2022

Strive, thrive, survive

Posted on Monday, July 14, 2008

College is a time of testing new waters, pushing deadlines further and making up the rules for yourself . Sruthi Gottipati belts out some survival tips

college, survival tipsThere comes a time when the best of us have woken up at 7:40 in the morning and made it for an 8:00 am lecture. College is a time of testing new waters, pushing deadlines further and making up the rules for yourself (usually conjuring them after a wasted night). Here is the foundation course to surviving college and all the challenges it throws up: 
Be prepared to meet all kinds in college
It is a vast sea of individuals from the sociology majors who expound Marx to the vindictive librarian, and you have to learn to handle them all with the deftness and diplomacy of a politician. Analyses Xavierite Aruna Chandrashekhar, “In my BMM group projects, I have come across two types of people: The control freaks who will not let you near the project. They act like part of an elite bomb squad, that is, if you go near their project it will explode. They will not give you any credit for your work either. The second type is the drifters who surface on the day of the presentation with queries like ‘Am a part of your group?’. The drifters aren’t subject to human worries like stress, academic achievement or attendance. Keep in mind that both the above belong to the warm universal group of procrastinators.” And how does one stay sane in such times? “Start a countdown for the weekend,” comes the reply. Srishti Purandare, a final year BCom (Banking and Insurance) student of Jai Hind College further strategises, “You have to learn about group dynamics and how to survive in a group. For example, never insult Amisha Patel in the presence of Gujarati students.”      
Crisis management
You have to learn to fib your way through tricky assignments and do it like a pro. “You might have to whip up a project in less than two hours and still get a straight A on it,” claims Srishti. “Keep lots of positive energy and Maggi handy. It also helps to befriend the first bencher variety.” When faced with a lecture at an unreasonable time (like pre-10 in the morning or post-four in the evening), there is always the option of hitting the snooze button. Caught by an indignant professor in the middle of your nap? Nod and pretend like you are an exchange student from Bangladesh.
Sales and marketing
Learn to sell yourself. You have to make yourself believe those lame excuses for your procrastination in order for your teacher to buy the same. Remember the more innovative the better. The days of “my dog ate my homework” are long gone. Think fresh. Ideate. Execute.
Basic understanding of biology
It is important to learn the basics of the human anatomy to have a functional body and social life. Make wise calculations as to how many drinks you can down before go from happy high to the point of no return. During exams it is especially helpful to be well-attuned to your bodies needs. “I have got by with three hours of sleep in 70 hours because of invigorating my body on a diet of caffeine and heavy metal,” claims Aruna.
Believe in  “Extentionalism”. The fundamental principle of extentionalism is that when you are in doubt you have to remember that all deadlines can be extended.
Finding true love woes
A common complaint among female college students especially in the Arts stream is the lack of males (intelligent or otherwise) in their class. Solution? Stake out new sources. “The Internet forms a viable option,” claims a 19-year-old on the condition of anonymity. 
Broaden your horizons
“Don’t judge classmates too hastily,” suggests final year hotel management student Arpit Chundawat. “Sometimes first impressions can be deceiving. You might wind up making some amazing friends.” The payoffs could include a math whiz or two.
Test stress
Exam pressure got you slowly tearing the fibres of your brain apart? Learn to figure out on how to live on less than five bucks a day, because Xeroxing toppers notes are going to rob you in broad daylight. It might help to do selective study according to horoscope.
Serpentine queues
Canteen queues are no joke especially when you need that shot of caffeine before you head for your Ancient Indian Culture lecture. It is time to cultivate that intellectual look (jhola and thick framed spectacles form an essential component) and demand in an authoritative voice “Professor wants coffee. Quick.” Chances are that it will also be accompanied with tray and straw.
(These tips reflect the authors views. Any actual attempt to replicate them is at the readers’ own risk.)


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