Shelby Thompson, a third-year psychology student, writes about how she balances her academic and work commitments during the school year.

Finding a balance between work and fun can be a challenge for any university student. I personally experienced this common problem this past semester. This past September, I assumed my role of Events Promotion and Student Success Peer at the Student Experience Office (SEO) at Carleton. Myself along with others at the office are in charge of organizing and promoting different events going on around campus, while letting students know what fun opportunities Carleton has to offer them.

What drove me to want to be a part of the SEO? It’s simple – I had participated in many events on campus prior to getting involved with the SEO, and I wanted to get more involved and learn more about what Carleton has to offer while helping students have a blast. I was so excited to get more involved with events on campus and contribute to the Carleton atmosphere we all love.

In taking on this role I made a commitment to work hard and fulfill my role as a peer helper in addition to my keeping up with my schoolwork and other job. With so much going on I had to get organized and plan efficiently, I wrote out everything I had to do on my calendar to keep track. But simply keeping track of what I had to get done and when wasn’t enough. I would plan to get work done but other things would come up and deter me from accomplishing my goals. For example, I started to put less effort into my assignments because I found I was always crunched for time. I had to improve my strategy and actually get the work done and get it done properly.

I made my goal to use every minute I could efficiently, sticking to my schedule to finish everything on time. I didn’t think about everything I had to get done as a nuisance or stressful event but rather an experience I had wanted. This thought drive me to accomplish my goals and allowed me to keep my grades up while enjoying my time at the SEO.

Through this experience so far I have been able to better develop my current organizational skills, time management skills and my confidence when working under pressure. I have now realized that when I put my mind to something and work hard, good things will come. Improving my time management skills over the course of this semester allowed me to contribute to the organizing and running of the CU Amazing Race. The hard work of my partner and I resulted in an organized, fun filled day!

I would most definitely recommend this experience to other students looking to become more involved at Carleton, wanting to build on their already existing skills, or to learn new ones. The possibilities now seem endless, every student can feel this way and applying to be apart of the SEO is only the beginning.

Submitted by Shelby Thompson, a third-year psychology student.

For more information on the Peer Helper program, visit carleton.ca/seo/peer-helper


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