With only eight days remaining in the semester caffeine becomes second only to oxygen, as the life blood of students hurrying to finish their final projects. Review sessions are popping up all over campus, and those who slept through that lecture all semester, feel their heart rate quicken as thoughts of that accumulative final hangs over their heads.
It is also at this time where individuals look at the events of the past year and how it shaped them as students. Whether it was surviving the daunting freshman year, getting admitted to their respective professional program and at the same time finishing those all important Pre-requirements. In this time, for some, is a countdown to an end of a college career as graduation invitations are placed in mailboxes.
“It’s been different,” Kara Reisdorph, a freshman business major, said. “I think overall the first year has been pretty challenging.”
Reisdorph grew up in Missoula and decided to stay to attend the University. She described these final weeks of the semester as difficult, and finding new ways of finding her way through the gauntlet of tests to which she is self described as having difficulty in normal test settings.
But for those who have braved the years of pre-professional, like Tim Kempff the future is now, with the entrance into the School of Education. Kempff is an Early Education major and is found his career solidified with his first step into a classroom. Where the children of the fourth grade class turned to him as teacher, and not a student, nervous he took a deep breath and begins his short lesson with them.
“Excited the first time I got into the classroom,” Kempff said. “[I] got excited for my future career all over again!”
However there are some students that rise above the call of academics, and answer the call of their country, and Junior Jennifer Bush knows this all too well. Bush on top of her classes at the University, is a National Guard Reservist in the 379th Engineering Battalion stationed at Fort Missoula.
“They help pay for school, but it gets overwhelming, and [I] worry about getting though school without getting deployed,” Bush said.
For most students the only focus is on getting through the next couple of days. Their remains many students, like Bush, who have to struggle everyday with the thought of being pulled out of class and sent to the frontlines.
For seniors the tension is constant, yet it’s not solely confined to thoughts of graduation, but what, if any, jobs will be available to them. In one of the worst economies since the Great Depression, seniors with any form of degree, know all too well that any job is worth taking.
Chris Williams, a senior photo-journalism major, was hard at work on his final video project, which will be the last of his college life. Williams sat at his computer desk, eyes glued to the computer screen examining every possible frame as his documentary comes together. His mammoth dog, whose distinctive odor filled the tiny apartment, lay at his feet. His desk was littered with tapes and digital disks.
“I’m really excited, learned a lot from the [Journalism] program,” Williams said. “I’m just looking to get out there and do my thing.”
Williams main focus in journalism has always been the outdoors, the wallpaper on his desktop and posted all over his apartment, are photos he has shot of the outdoors. This only excites him further about the internship with Backpack Magazine, in Boulder, CO, this summer.
“This internship is a dream come true for me, I only hope that I can do well enough there to make it a permanent position,” Williams said.No matter the circumstance every student faces many challenges every day, whether it’s as simple as getting out of bed, to sitting down to the biggest test of the semester. Yet with all the obstacles that come with college life, most are able to overcome and succeed. That above just getting a degree, most has a belief that at the end of all things that they are happy, and a hope of a better tomorrow.