Navigating The New Normal At Fairmont State University


With the semester in full swing, many students are hard at work balancing their academics, extra-curriculars, and their lives outside of Fairmont State. Either you are nearing the midterm season, or it’s already arrived. Therefore, I am here to provide three life hacks to get through this semester! Being a senior here at Fairmont State, I have experienced the “normal” college experience pre-COVID, and like many of us, then learned to navigate and adjust to the new normal here at Fairmont State University.

The first tip I would like to share is to develop good time management skills that best suit you personally. Investing in a planner is a great way to see day-to-day tasks right in front of you! To stay on track one can use anything from a small calendar, a notification app on your cell-phone to remind you of upcoming assignments, or even writing down a daily to-do list in a class notebook. Staying on top of academic due dates and personal obligations is a necessary, and oftentimes, a preventative step to avoid feeling overwhelmed and stressed at the very last minute. I like to plan out my week surrounding commitments.

To avoid stress, I also leave a bit of wiggle room and make sure to set aside time to indulge in some of my favorite hobbies and make sure to get enough sleep. Knowing that lack of sleep can heighten anxiety and depression, I always make sure that I am able to get at least 6-8 hours of sleep every night. If there are larger assignments that I am able to stretch out over the week, I work on them in small increments and then they do not seem so overwhelming and I am not cramming to meet a deadline at the last moment. This was something many professors had advised me to avoid procrastination when I was a freshman, but it took me a few semesters to truly understand that putting off assignments tends to snowball and then I am left scrambling to put assignments together that may not exemplify my academic strengths.

The second tip I would like to share is to utilize Fairmont State’s very own LEAD Center! The LEAD Center is located on the second floor of the Ruth Ann Musick library and it is a safe support space for studying sessions and logging study hours for sports. There are numerous peer tutors who can assist students with any coursework or answer any questions that they may have. According to their website, they “offer a variety of resources to students, including peer and professional tutoring, workshops, peer mentoring, and more”. To find more information on the LEAD center or to find all contact information, click here and one can also book an appointment through Navigate. The hours of operation for Fall 2022 are:

Monday – 9am-6pm

Tuesday – 9:30am-6:30pm

Wednesday – 9am-7:30pm

Thursday – 10am-6pm

Friday – by appointment.

I highly recommend stopping in!

The third and final tip that I would like to share is centered around self-care! After a long week of working on assignments, participating in extracurriculars, and even working an outside job – it is VITAL to take a breath and recharge one’s own social/personal battery. Reading, writing, listening to music, playing sports, playing video games, getting involved with campus activities, planning a get together with friends at home, or even going out for a nice dinner with friends or that special someone are just a few ways to ensure that we are taking care of ourselves and enjoying life as it comes. Occasionally, life tends to move pretty fast and it’s quite easy to get swallowed up in academics and work, but that does not mean that you must sacrifice your own mental well-being all of the time. If you are feeling alone, stuck, or stressed-out, there are resources that Fairmont State University offers to help you out. Fairmont State’s counseling services are offered for free to ALL students, and counselors can be found on the 3rd floor of the Falcon Center, near Student Health Services in suite 340, and information about counseling services can be found here.

Remember you are not alone, and there are a number of people who are on your side and want YOU to succeed. Please keep in mind, my fellow Falcons, college may be difficult at times, especially in this new “normal” world, but we have a community here to get over the hurdles that may stand in our way. I truly believe in you, I believe in myself, and I know that together, we will achieve great things in our futures!