Mastering My Craft In 2017

Seeing as I have not posted in quite some time, I thought the last day of the year was a fitting time for some reflection…

2016 has been an interesting year for me academically. As it began I was entering my second semester of graduate classes as a Special Student at Carleton, not yet in the MA program in History. Thankfully, I was able to end that semester very successfully despite a major illness in March.

My summer was then spent travelling to rest up for a very busy academic year. In May, I had the chance to travel back to my home province of Alberta and visit my relatives for the first time in over seventeen years in their homes. It was invigorating to see them and take in the natural beauty of the Rocky Mountains. Later on in the summer I then travelled to New York City, my favourite place in the world, with my father who I had not seen all year. Both of these trips were absolutely crucial to allow me to recharge my batteries so that I would be both physically and mentally prepared for the most challenging academic year of my career.

Not only was I facing a great deal of challenging academic work of my own, but in addition I would have the responsibility of being a TA for the first time. I knew that in order to successfully maintain the grades that I had in mind, I would have to manage my energy very carefully. Thankfully the History Department was very accommodating to this reality and helped me arrange my schedule to do so.

For years I have been waiting with great eagerness to try my hand at being a TA. The experience did not disappoint. While I didn’t get as much of a chance to interact with students as I had hoped, I did get a chance to build some great friendships with fellow graduate students as well as professors.

As I look on to 2017 I feel a great deal of excitement. This next semester is going to be a busy one with two major class projects due, as well as more TA responsibilities. However, I know that if I keep track of my energy, I can keep my stress level down and reduce any risks to my health. If I do this I will be able to complete these two major assignments to the best of my abilities. Once this is accomplished I can begin the most exciting part of my 2017, my Masters thesis.

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