If you are looking at this site, you are likely considering college at a University of Hawaii campus. My name is Mark Bernstein, and I’m the President of the Harriet Bouslog Labor Scholarship Fund. I am also a proud alumnus of the University of Hawaii at Manoa, having graduated there in August of 1973. I know how difficult college can be, especially developing the self-discipline necessary to make your experience at UH less stressful, less frustrating and, thus, far more enjoyable.
The key to enjoying your college experience is planning, discipline and hard work. Wait a second you say. How can planning, discipline and hard work lead to more fun? Because this is an ironic world, the answer is a resounding yes, so please hear me out, because I had the time of my life at UH; breezed into a great law school with good grades and frankly, never stressed out the whole time.
The first thing that leads to having a great time at college is realizing you’re not in high school anymore…thank god! Now that you’re out of high school, you should soon realize that life goes on all 12 months a year, unlike high school. If you treat your college education as a year round endeavor while your classmates are treating it as a 9 month a year experience, you will have an extra year to complete your education, giving you an incredible amount of extra time to go to parties, football games, read books that have nothing to do with college; even have a meaningful relationship. Yes, your classmates may get a better tan or a head start to melanoma, but you have better things to do.
In the real world you now reside in you do not get the summers off. That means you can go to summer school where an incredibly boring core requirement can be completed in less than six weeks. So, instead of being tortured for an entire semester, six core requirement credits will be knocked off in 5 1/2 weeks if you take only 1 summer session, or 12 units in 11 weeks if you attend both sessions. Now a lot of your fellow students won’t want to do this which means that getting into some classes will be substantially easier in summer which will again reduce your stress levels, especially as you progress. I’ll admit that summer school can be intense, but would you trade 12 weeks of intense work for 40 weeks of very manageable workloads? I would and did and all I can say is what a great trade off!
As a result of knocking off 12 units of core requirements in 1 summer, my regular school years were a gas. Sometimes I only took 10 units with 2 electives and I never took more than 12. All of a sudden, school started to be a lot of fun with a work week of 40 hours or less. This approach also resulted in completing all of my requirements before I started my final semester so as I approached my final registration circus (we used to register in Klum gym using procedures which are now outlawed by the Geneva Convention) I was not facing the prospect of telling my parents I wasn’t going to graduate on time because I needed a class that wasn’t being offered that semester or I couldn’t get into.
My last semester was a delightful romp of 6 units so I could leave to go to the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland because I could do one last summer session to get Fritz’s comparative religion class I heard was fun. So all I can say is nothing creates more opportunity for fun or makes life more enjoyable than a little planning, discipline and hard work on the front end of any project you undertake. Have a great time at the University of Hawaii. It’s a great school and a great place to learn and grow.