As finals week steamrolls towards Mines students, even the most diligent are frantic to prepare for exams. The houses on greek row are no different in feeling this pressure. While most houses have academic/scholarship chairs, members charged with the difficult duty of keeping other members on track in their classes, greek members of every kind are scrambling to prepare for upcoming tests. A few of those greek members shared their habits and advice to get through finals.
Mines junior and Alpha Phi scholarship chair, Katie Poffenbarger, said, “I color a lot when I’m starting to feel stressed out,” Katie also refuses to study at all the day of the test. According to her, “it makes me feel like I have a better grip on things.” When asked about the Alpha Phi GPA she said, “I redid our study this year and added whiteboards with new study resources. It’s my job to check up on girls to make sure they are doing everything they can to do to get good grades. I have to help them pull it together when their test scores suffer.” The greek GPAs, which are posted online annually, is a constant source of competition between houses.
Sigma Kappa Sophomore, Leah Marshall, offered advice to students with upcoming tests, “Staying focused for five straight days is the worst, try to take little breaks throughout the day so you don’t go crazy.” The Pi Phi house is also hard at work in their endeavors to succeed during finals. Kaylin Berry, a Pi Phi Sophomore, said, “It’s a network of people that have already taken the classes and are willing to help you, so that has really benefited me,” of the help she received from her sisters. Berry also has an interesting ritual for the day of her tests, “The morning of the test, I get up early and study my butt off then watch an episode of TV before I go to my test.” As for her advice to new finals takers, she says simply, “don’t underestimate them.”
Students in fraternities are also buckling down for the final stretch. Kyle Heser is one of those students. He balances impressive academic performance with leadership roles in organizations all around campus. Kyle, a junior in Metallurgical Engineering, is currently a lead peer mentor, the vice president of Blue Key, and is the president elect for Sigma Alpha Epsilon in the fall. Sitting down with him for a few minutes, he looks stress-free for the amount of involvement he takes on within the community.
Kyle’s hardest final of the semester, according to him, will be modern physics, and his studying style is “bunkin’ down with a couple of classmates, a couple of textbooks, a large cup of coffee, and studying long into the night.” When asked about his finals week stress relievers, one of his tips is to “[read] a good book before going to sleep, instead of studying up until bedtime.” He also enjoys playing “roofball” with friends during study breaks, a wall-ball type game played inside the courtyard at Sigma Alpha Epsilon.
Roofball is not the only benefit of being greek during finals week. “Everybody is studying for the same finals, so you always have study partners in your house,” Kyle says. “The advice and help that upperclassmen can give is also helpful.” Overall, Kyle is a perfect example of a greek student who knows how to finish strong and stay relaxed in the process.