By: Maddie Boyer

Welcome back to school, Deacs! We hope you’re as excited as we are to be back in beautiful Winston-Salem. While this school year is unlike anything we’ve ever seen before, we’ve gathered some tips for making this unprecedented semester as successful and enjoyable as possible.

Make Movement a Priority

If you’re like me, virtual class means sitting in the same chair for hours…and hours. Getting up and moving your body is not only good for your physical well-being but will give your brain a much-needed break! Get up and get moving, even if it’s just a quick stretch or walk. You’ll be amazed at the difference. 

Take Breaks from Screens

Staring at a screen doing work for hours was already exhausting in years past. Now, with many (or maybe all) of your classes online, it’s more important than ever to step away from your screens and schedule time to unplug. Whether this means a workout, making dinner, or catching up with a friend, consciously taking time to step away from screens will help you decompress and recharge. 

Utilize Google Calendar 

With some classes online and some in-person, keeping track of all your work and due dates can be more challenging than ever. Putting all of your assignments into a spreadsheet for each week is SO helpful so you don’t miss a random assignment from Canvas! Google calendar not your style? Try using a physical planner, bullet journal, or online organizer such as My Study Life.

Take Advantage of Your Resources

Life during COVID-19 causes more uncertainty and stress. Luckily, Wake Forest has many resources for you to take advantage of! Feeling overwhelmed or anxious about the pandemic? Schedule an appointment to chat with the Counseling Center. Not sure how to study most effectively for online learning? The Learning Assistance Center has got your back. Looking for ways to relax? Reserve a spot in a fitness class through DeaconRec or see what’s happening on campus through Corq.

Get to Know Your Professors

Virtual office hours are a great opportunity to connect! Your professors WANT to get to know you and support you. Making time to get to know your professors will create a deeper connection and make asking for help even easier. Remember, they miss in-person class and interacting with their students as much as you do!

Make Time to Be Social (Smartly)

Social distancing doesn’t mean social isolation! It is far too easy to feel lonely with online-classes, so make time to connect with others. Whether this is a virtual face-to-face game night, Netflix Party, or an outdoor walk with a friend, there are still many opportunities to socialize while staying safe. Take a break from your studies and reach out to someone!

We hope these tips help you have a healthy and happy start to the Fall semester! Stay safe, Deacs, and welcome back!

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