Posted April 2, 2012 by Erin Morrell 

Six Weeks and Counting

It’s that time of year when many student activities and college union professionals get extremely busy and overwhelmed. The academic year is coming to a close in the United States and students are preparing to celebrate the beginning of summer. Students are busy looking for internships and jobs, while we are working out last-minute details for the programs and events that are still to come.

Commencement is looming and so are those pesky final exams. Many activities professionals (and students) are preparing for the last festivities of the year, while college union folks are preparing to hire, select, and train new student employees. Many advise the senior week committees and even dabble in orientation responsibilities.

No matter what your job description entails, the last five or six weeks of the semester can be a blur—an exciting blur. Personally, I have been reflecting on the fact that when my students graduate this year, I will have seen two complete cycles of students come and leave from Albertus Magnus College. I still keep in touch with a great deal of former students, and even call some of them friends. Through my job and my relationships, I have done my best to make some changes here, and I can’t believe how much life on campus has really changed over the past eight years. It’s amazing how fast time flies by and how quickly students come and go.

I appreciate all of the work that my students have done and will continue to do as this semester comes to a close. I am extremely proud of all they have accomplished and learned this year and have done my best to show them my gratitude as often as possible. I send emails or cards to thank them for a job well done. This may seem like it’s not much, but it can encourage and help validate their hard work and dedication.

If you are feeling like the end of the semester can’t come soon enough, take a moment to sit back and enjoy the ride. Some of your students will soon be gone into the “real” world, and others will leave for the summer, eager and ready to return in the fall. No matter how busy it gets, remember that there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Some of my Region 1 friends love to jokingly call this time of the year #maprilay on Twitter in honor of these months just blending together with so much activity.

We can love this time of the year, even if it means we may get less sleep and more headaches. We are the people who welcome students to campus each year, as well as those who wish them a fond farewell as the adult world or even just the summer months await them. My best advice for getting through the next few weeks: Smile and laugh—it only gets better from here.
Have you told your students how much you appreciate all of their hard work this year? Do you often hear it back from them?


Erin Morrell

Erin Morrell is the Associate Dean for Campus Activities & Orientation at Albertus Magnus College.

Erin has responsibilities in advising student organizations, including the programming board and student government, and supervising department student employees. She oversees the Albertus@Night late night programming series, and serves as the Director of New Student Orientation.


Nice article Erin - this reminds me of something I heard at #ACUI12 - had to do with writing letters to students' parents when they do great things on campus that we're aware of. I'm planning to write letters to the graduating seniors in the fraternity I advise to thank them for supporting their son's decision to join. Sometimes parents of our student staff and student leaders need to hear thanks as much as the students do.
Jeff Pelletier
Comment posted 04/02/2012 5:02 PM
Great post! I can relate to some of the same feelings. This year's crop of graduating seniors started at SNHU when I did. That means this coming year will be the first cycle in which all the students I know now are ones I didn't know when I started. That reminds me to stop and enjoy "Maprilay," no matter how hectic, because these amazing students will move on quickly.
Gavin Telfer
Comment posted 04/03/2012 10:00 AM
Seriously Erin! I was just about to finish my post this week on the exact same topic! Now I have to exert major mental energy to think of a new one. Maybe I'll just post a ditto! Great job of course!
Comment posted 04/03/2012 11:51 AM
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