Seattle University's student newspaper since 1933

The Spectator

Seattle University's student newspaper since 1933

The Spectator

Seattle University's student newspaper since 1933

The Spectator

It’s Been A Long Quarter

Zam Ortega

Being less than a week away from finals, students have a lot to say about how the winter quarter went.

Winter quarter is typically the toughest quarter for students, mainly due to the  gray and wet weather. The few daylight hours during the winter months do not make it any easier. Some students find themselves struggling with seasonal depression and the potential lack of motivation can make some go on auto-pilot mode. 

With that said, the winter quarter is almost over.

Keegan Santiago, a third-year English major, says that their winter quarter was slow compared to the fall quarter. He mentioned that the biggest reason why the winter quarter has been so slow has been due to the weather impacting his motivation and energy to engage in his classes. 

“It’s out of the quarter’s control. Since the weather changes, more people are less bound to participate in school and attend class,” Santiago said.

Santiago commented on the impacts of the weather on winter quarter attendance, which impacts  the culture on campus.

Jean Simpson, a third-year English major, says that her winter quarter was quite stressful and a lot has transpired. Despite feeling stressed, she has pushed through the tough moments, reminding herself that finals are just around the corner. Simpson elaborated by explaining that the struggles faced during winter quarter aren’t specific to SU.

“I think this winter quarter was really stressful. Mostly because of my own doing, I would not blame the school or the quarter system or anything of that sort. I do think that the quarter system is so straightforward.”

Simpson also gave insight into how the quarter system produces an “all work no play” mentality for students. 

“There are not a lot of breaks. Not a lot of chances to take a rest and that kind of screws me up because it’s hard to keep pushing and pushing,” Simpson said.

Simpson agrees with Santiago that the climate significantly impacts students’ mentality in regard to life on campus. 

“Bad weather and not really feeling like you’re up to your normal level of standard and self. It’s really difficult when everything around you is kind of miserable”.

Simpson opened up about their feelings at the end of the quarter surrounding finals and preparing to end the winter quarter. They commit to trying their best but acknowledge how draining the final days of the quarter can be. 

With the quarter system, the 11-week span can pass by a lot quicker than expected as students are covering more material within a smaller time frame than semester schools. Santiago echoed this sentiment and highlighted that everything can suddenly blend together which can feel as though it’s taking a toll.

“I lose track of how far into the quarter I am. I realized that finals week is next week not long ago. I did not realize that it was coming up so fast. I kind of just lose track of where I am,” Santiago said. 

Alternatively, there are students who try their best to focus on the bright side of finals. 

Alec Willard-Herr, a third-year biology major, has a more positive view on the winter quarter. 

“This quarter has been a mixed bag. I think that because the winter quarter is so short, it feels like a lot of material for classes is really cramped into a short time span. Every quarter is a good quarter in a sense. You have to look at it positively even when there’s stuff working against you,” Willard-Herr said.

Willard-Herr expressed that the best part of finals during the quarter is being able to show what you have learned. He went on to say that even with the stress and pressure of studying and taking exams it reminds him of the knowledge he’s gained.

“I’m looking forward to the final projects because it allows me to show my professors what I have learned over the quarter. It proves to me that I have gained this information,” Willard-Herr said.

He also commented on the weather’s impact on his studies and level of energy during the winter, noting that seasonal depression can play a big role in people’s lives Yet, he encourages others to not feel discouraged by how that may impact their academic performance in winter quarter. 

“My biggest suggestion in terms of going into winter quarter is that you’re going to be working a lot to meet the same standards that you do in other quarters. Even if you are not performing as well as you like, that does not define you as a person or your academic career” Willard-Herr said.  

As the long-awaited finals come to an end, the bleak weather and short days will soon be a thing of the past. Just remember, the spring quarter ushers in a fresh start, presenting endless opportunities to embark on new exciting adventures, revel in the sunny weather, and set new academic milestones. It’s time to seize the moment and make the most of this season of renewal.

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