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Author: curtiskk

My Top 5 Tips to Survive Umich

My Top 5 Tips to Survive Umich

This was quite the year. Although it seems like assignments and exams drag on, the year itself flew by. I still feel like I was just in the Diag, exploring campus at Artscapade and trying to figure out where I would fit in at college. Now here I am, at the end of my freshman year, and it seems like it lasted barely a month.

With that being said, I have certainly encountered a few (a lot) of challenges. Of those, one sticks out: Make an effort to take care of yourself. This was definitely one of the greatest challenges I faced. I had to learn the hard way that if you do not take care of yourself, there is no way you can take care of school and perform well. So I have come up with 5 major points that I will keep with me for the rest of my academic career.

  1. When given the chance, pet every animal you come across.
    1. Studies have shown that they reduce stress
    2. Visit home to see your own animals
    3. Pet every animal that walks past you on campus
  2. Do not eliminate “you” time.
    1. Watch Netflix
    2. Get into bed sometimes
    3. Do the small things that make you happy
  3. Take care of your body and mind
    1. Exercise
    2. Start the day with a healthy breakfast
    3. Eat those 6 mojo cookies if they will make you feel better about your upcoming exam
  4. Your friends are your support system.
    1. Let them know about your classes and days
    2. Plan relaxing outings (or innings)
    3. Even if it takes time, you will find people you connect with
  5. Love yourself.
    1. Love yourself a lot
    2. Love yourself some more
    3. Love yourself the most

It was a crazy year, but it was one for the books and I would not change a thing (except for my General Chemistry grade).

Dying and Laughter Can Go Together

Dying and Laughter Can Go Together

When I initially opened the letter to myself, I was so shocked. What I had wrote was so relevant. I said things like “don’t give up, no matter how hard it gets” and “stay true to yourself”. These are still core values that I hold, and now that I am finishing up my first semester of freshman year, they matter even more to me.

This semester challenged me in ways I had never been challenged before. Even though I asked a lot of people what college was like before I came to Michigan, nothing could have prepared me. The experience overall was very good, but I definitely struggled a lot along the way. I remember getting my first exam grade back and crying because even though it was good, it wasn’t an A. I remember sitting in chemistry 80% of the time and having absolutely no idea what was going on.

One thing that I am most proud of is how I have changed to believe that a bad grade does not mean you are a bad person. I came into college expecting that I would ace everything, and that I would never, ever, receive a C. About a month in, I received a reality check and learned that I will not always know everything. This was a learning experience, because now I focus on knowing the material instead of trying to make the grade.

Even though it was challenging, it was also one of the most incredible experiences I have had yet. I got to experience all different types of people, coming from a range of backgrounds. I gained new perspectives on so many topics because of all the exposure to things I had never come across before. Even in the midst of being so stressed I was running on zombie-mode, I managed to find laughter and good times with people who were also running on zombie-mode.

One thing I am looking forward to improving is my health. Before college, I was in the gym 7 days a week and eating a clean diet. Once I came to Michigan, suddenly I had so many other matters that required my attention. It was hard to make time to even relax, let alone go to the gym. I am hoping that as I gain experience, I will gain better time management skills and get back to the healthy lifestyle that I prefer and love.

The first semester of freshman year of college has turned out to be one of the greatest and most difficult semesters of my life. The memories I have made thus far are truly heartwarming, and they will continue to make me smile for as long as I am alive.

Health Care is a Birthright

Health Care is a Birthright

After reading the “United States Health Care Reform” article by Barack Obama, I was surprised to find a lot of things. However, I was most surprised by the fact that in 2008, the United States devoted 16% of our economy to health care. This is most surprising because although this is a great number, health care in 2008 (pre-ACA) was not at the level it should have been given the amount of money spent. At this time, according to the article, more than 1 in 7 americans were without health care coverage. Those who did have coverage did not receive the quality of care expected from such a big health care spending budget. In other words, even though the United States was spending big figures on health care, it did not correlate with the quality of care, nor did it correlate with the amount of people receiving care.

Although Hilary Clinton and Donald Trump both have their pros and cons, I can confidently say that Trump’s plan is definitely the most risky. Trump would like to repeal the Affordable Care Act, because he believes that it has done nothing but result in higher premiums, and less competition within the market. However, if he repeals the ACA, millions of Americans will be left without healthcare coverage. They will no longer be able to afford it. If this happens, it would almost be like going back in time and undoing all of the work our late president’s have put in to try and get the ACA passed. That 1 in 7 uninsured figure would most likely return, and we would once again start from square one. I do not believe this is the direction we as a country need to be going in relation to health care. Hilary’s plan to reform and improve the ACA is the one I would like to see.

I have no suggestions for improving the health care system that haven’t already been considered and have been passed or rejected. I am not sure why the United States has not achieved a successful healthcare system yet, as many other countries have, but it is a shame. I will say that I believe we should start with the basic thought that health care is indeed a right. To say it is not is to believe your access to care should depend upon money. If we think this way, we are placing value on currency and not on human lives themselves. This would mean one could live or die based upon their financial status, a morally inconceivable thought to me. Health care should be a basic human right.