I STARTED OT SCHOOL THIS WEEK!!! CRAZINESS!
This week was met with a lot of nervousness, a lot of excitement, and so much gratitude! I spent my Labor Day weekend before classes started stressing over the anatomy & physiology competency exam scheduled for Day 1. I busied myself with organizing my binders, books, backpack, and checking emails repetitively. I reviewed the A&P information religiously until Tuesday night when I turned to Josh and said “I just can’t keep looking at this”. So, instead of staying up late studying feverishly, I spent the night before classes started relaxing, preparing my belongings for the morning, and spending time with Josh who insisted on sending me off on my 1st day of grad school (side note: my parents were in Utah visiting my brother so they weren’t home all week so I am extremely grateful that Josh was willing to be my support system for my 1st day jitters!).
Wednesday morning Josh & I were up early because he had to leave my house early in order to get to work in time. My mom insisted she needed a 1st day of school picture so before Josh left my house he was snapping awkward 1st day of school photos at 6 o’clock in the morning. I stood next to a smiley face balloon that Granny had given me the day before. Quite comical if you ask me!
After Josh left, I ate a hearty breakfast and packed my lunch. I kissed the dogs goodbye and headed out the door for my 50-minute commute. I left my house two hours before class started because I was worried about finding parking and didn’t want to feel rushed. Five minutes into my drive, I approached an unexpected detour. Just my luck! I found my way around the detour and continued on my intended route. I also took the wrong jug-handle at one point in my drive. Oops! Nevertheless, I arrived before 8 AM, there was plenty of parking, and I wandered through campus to calm my nerves.
I got to class 30 minutes early, sat next to a classmate I remembered from orientation, and settled in. We all chatted amongst ourselves which was a wonderful way to distract ourselves from the looming competency exam.
We took a class picture (the most awake and put-together we will probably look all semester). We did an ice breaker activity called “speed dating”. This was super fun! We also reviewed for the exam in an untraditional way which I enjoyed!
By mid-morning, we were taking the competency exam. This was pass/fail scoring. You either passed or you didn’t. After turning in the exam, I knew my weaknesses and what I needed to improve on moving forward. I was confident I had passed but knew that I still had plenty of room for growth!
We had an hour lunch break so I printed a few things and relaxed outside. The remainder of the day included a review of the class readings we had already been assigned. Also…. I had passed the competency exam! YAY!
On the second day of classes, we reviewed the syllabi, discussed our reading assignments, and began a case study on schizophrenia. I am excited to continue to learn about my cohort and the material for each class. I know it will be challenging but I know it will all be worth it!
I also met with my professor for my graduate assistantship. I was given some of my responsibilities for the semester and I’m excited to get started on this!
Our professors also continuously reminding us that the cohort & faculty are a team. Three-hundred people had applied to the program but only 30 were given seats. We are no longer competing against each other because we all deserve to be where we are. We will help each other succeed and overcome challenges. We will work together because we all share one common goal – to become occupational therapists. The faculty wants us to succeed so they will help us when help is needed.
We’ve only had two days of classes (hence why this blog is titled “The Half-Week”). I spent today developing a weekly “agenda” (basically a check-list for each class) of readings, assignments, quizzes/tests that are “due” the upcoming so that everything can be somewhat organized. I am using this as a supplement to my planner for the time being so that everything is organized in a clear and concise way. I’m not sure if this is something I’ll stick with in the long-term, but with so much information in the last two days, I feel this is the best way to move forward.
I have so much gratitude the start of this new, exciting adventure. I can’t wait to continue to learn, be challenged, and develop strong relationships with my cohort and professors! I am grateful for Josh being there for my 1st day of grad school and the support of my parents/family from afar.
I’m sure that this blog posts won’t always be this lengthy, but for now, I hope that you’ve enjoyed my rambling!