By Joshua Fowler
Its getting to be that time of year again, the Christmas trees are arising, Those heartwarming songs from our childhood are playing yet again on the radio and all over the country, students are stressing out about finals, and final projects. It’s the most… stressful time… of the year, especially for college students. And for us Architecture students it means frantically putting the final touches on our designs and boards and models for those final critiques. Oh yes this is the time of year where the studio lights will be on nearly 24/7 for that last week before final presentations. The key to surviving this time of the year for architecture students involves several techniques…
1. Don't waste time panicking
While you know these last days and hours are coming to a close, just remember that no matter what happens, life will go on, so don’t sit there worrying about what you do or do not have when you could be spending that time working on finishing strong.
2. Plan, plan, plan
A good way to avoid panicking in the first place is to set a schedule for yourself. Don’t just work willy-nilly on things hoping you will finish because often times one may become stuck on making one aspect of their project perfect but missing other crucial material. Give yourself due dates if your professors haven't already and stick to them. This will force you to catalog all of the aspects of your project you would like to accomplish and then you can focus on doing them in the allotted amount of time you, or your professors, have given yourself.
3. Keep your self-confidence high
This also tends to be the time of year some architecture students will begin to doubt their abilities. You have worked all semester on your project/s, now it's time to show them off. Don’t worry about what student 1 or 2 has or the quality of what they have, rather focus on what you need to do, just remember you can do this.
With Christmas time right around the corner and Thanksgiving just past, there is a chance that you have let slip into some workless days or weekends. No harm done but try to relieve yourself from as many distractions as you can. Or work on your project when confronted with one of these distractions. For example, a family member may be able to give you some insight into how well your project is understood, presented, etc. Their interest and comments on your project may just inspire you to a great presentation idea or lead to a crucial missing element you may be missing in your project. Just look at the finish line, c'mon we're almost there.
5. Finish strong
No matter what happens it is important to end the semester with a head held high and confidence that this is your project, your work which you have been developing throughout the semester, and dig your heels into the ground and push as hard as you can to finish to the best of your abilities. When it comes down to it, if you can step back and honestly say that this is the best I personally could have done on this project in the given amount of time, then you have a successful project.