Why Taking a Fifth Year Isn’t So Bad

To say that I was bummed out over having to return for a fifth year was an understatement. In my mind, I was ready to finish my degree and continue my studies. Unfortunately, things don’t always work out how we imagine them to. I could have sat in my room and cried about the “what if’s,” but instead I’m looking to move forward more positively!

  • Fix Academic Mistakes

I was not looking forward to having to return and re-take courses which I had previously not done well in. But, once I started talking to the professors whose classes I’d be re-taking, I felt more confident and less worried about once again doing poorly. A fourth-year seminar and a 1500-word essay don't really seem that intimidating anymore.

  • Become More Involved on Campus

I’ve always been the type to be involved in various clubs on campus; however, I have always found myself having to put it on the back burner. I’m looking forward to being able to spend more time getting involved in various clubs on campus! I’ve also been hoping to have more time to perhaps volunteer a couple of hours a week — seeing as it’s something I used to do quite a bit in high school. 

  • Take a Mental/Emotional Break

Since I’ll be moving at a slower academic pace than usual, I was worried about finding myself becoming rusty when it came to my academics; however, I feel like by not jumping right into another program, I am saving myself a whole lot of headache down the road. By going at a bit of a slower pace I’ll be able to save my energy and, in turn, have a better overall performance at school. If I had gone to my next program right away, I would have burnt-out six months in. I want to be able to give the best possible academic performance and this is a good way to relax a bit before I do just that.

  • Work More

I took a hiatus from working during my fourth year so I could focus on acing my final reading and research seminar. Overall, that was the best possible choice. However, I do miss being able to get out of the house and make some money. By having fewer worries on my plate, I’ll be able to make money, and perhaps even splurge on things that I’ve really wanted. Vacation? Sure. New wardrobe? Sure! 

  • Enjoy Time with Friends

A lot of my friends will either be working full-time or continuing with their studies in the area. I’d love to be able to spend more time with them doing things that don’t involve crying in the library three times a week. 

So, even though I wasn’t super thrilled at first that I had to take a fifth year, I have come to realize that it really isn’t so bad.