Movin' out: The stress doesn't
end when the last exam is done
By Aubreyann Hansen
May 1, 2008 | With only two hours until her last final
and six hours until final check out Elysa Campbell lets
out a growling scream from the depths of her stomach
with the power of hell and throws her stack of 133 flashcards
that scatter everywhere into open and half-packed boxes
and the tops of closed and marked ones.
Campbell, 19, is an English major at the Utah State
University. She has turned in roughly 25 pages of final
papers and has one final exam. She has teaching responsibilities
in her hometown the day after her only final which leaves
her no extra time to pack or be with friends after her
In the last week of school, or 168 hours, Elysa has
spent 32 of those on her 25 pages of essays and research
paper. Forty-two of the hours were spent sleeping, seven
and a half hours for eating, an hour and 45 minutes
in the shower, and eight hours and 45 minutes getting
ready. On top of all that she has spent four hours with
lesson plans for when she goes home. That leaves 72
hours of naps, leisure time, cleaning, and taking care
of roommates. Oh and don't forget the studying for her
final and packing her entire college dorm in that time
as well, and laying in bed with haunting thoughts of
what did not happen today and what tomorrow will bring.
"I just feel overwhelmed with everything that is going
on for school. Packing and getting living arrangements
and a job for the summer is just too much," Campbell
Campbell is moving to Washington for the summer and
has to pack boxes that go to her home in southern Utah
and ones that will go to Washington with her. Needing
to separate and keep packing organized is no easy task
for a college dorm habitant. Elysa also lives on the
fourth floor of a building with no elevator which adds
to the excitement of moving. Hauling boxes up and down
the stairs is tiring and Campbell sits down for a break
after every other load.
As her first year of college and being away from home
is over, Campbell has learned to stresses and challenges
of life without parents and just how much harder college
exams are from high school finals.
Campbell is not alone. She may be the only Utah State
Student with this situation but many feel overwhelmed
and have extremely stressful stories of their own.
Cassidy Gadd, 19, lives in Old Farm apartments in
Logan, Utah. Her finals last throughout most of finals
week at Utah State University. Gadd has enough "shit
to pack" that her parents are bringing a trailer to
fit everything in one trip. Gadd of course will not
fill the entire trailer by herself but at least half
will be stacked with Gadd's white college-style microwave,
a small television with a built in VCR, along with many
of boxes and bags.
Gadd also has to balance packing and studying with
a job and boyfriend. Practically everyone knows how
much effort relationships take, especially to have them
last through college.
Gadd said, "It's so sad because we don't really get
to see each other at all through finals week. Sometimes
he'll stop by to bring me some food or something to
be sweet, but we don't get to actually spend time together."
Gadd gets the biggest smile on her face and her eyes
glow when he shows up. She walks with a quick pace while
dodging boxes, books, flashcards, and notes on the floor
to embrace in a six-Mississippi-seconds hug with her
"Sorry to interrupt. I know you are busy. I just wanted
to drop by real quick," the boyfriend said.
They kiss goodbye and Gadd says, "Back to studying."
Gadd has much to study as she is getting close to
graduation in the psychology department within the next
year. This means many research hours, a 2-inch stack
of flashcard terms to know, and six books that each
weighs around 7 pounds.
Overwhelming is an understatement to students with
finals, cleaning checks and moving out, and even more
so for the ones graduating within the next year.
Each student is doing what they can to prepare for
finals in the ways that helps them personally in the
best way. Some spend the time and paper to make flashcards
galore. Others use poster boards to map out concepts.
Some merely review notes and read through the book.
The method differs from student to student and is
unimportant. But the time that goes into studying is
outstanding. If each student attending Utah State this
semester were to put in ten hours of studying for all
their finals, it would equal roughly 240,000 hours or
10,000 days of studying.
* * *
Go, Aggies! Good luck to everyone with finals and
moving out for the summer.