Press "Enter" to skip to content

Support Structure: It’s crunch time!

I’m out, I’ll admit it I’ve got zero ideas for a column today. At least zero ideas that I think would be enough to read. Usually, when I write these columns I try to look at the things which might be bothering students and then write a support structure advice piece which might best answer their concerns. But if I’m being candid (which of course I always am in this sympathetic advice column), today I can’t remove myself from my own experience, this column seems to be just another looming deadline.

As we reach the crunch-point at the end of the year when many students leave their accommodation to permanently move to the library, writing a column on time can seem like a minor concern, compared to a dissertation that’s supposed to be the crowning achievement of a degree, and a bevy of other essays seemingly thrown in there for laughs by our striking lecturers. The quandary of these assignments is however much the same as this column. Should I take pride in my work and try to make it original and with great effort? Or rush through to make the deadlines pulling together the most-thin points to build an article like a tower missing Jenga Blocks.

piece of academic work can be either perfect or finished

For so many of us at university, deadlines mean our work is never really an expression of what we’ve learnt on our courses or what we can do at our best, so much as an expression of what we had to do with the time available. Somewhere in an alternate universe there are a series of brilliant columns fleshed out, and written with time and care, entertaining the masses of QMUL students with thoughts on wittily relevant subjects I can’t even possibly imagine, although one of them is definitely a 400-word treatise on the stupidity of changing the name of the hive only to choose the nest.

So, what to do? Unfortunately we live in this reality, where my personal advisor once bluntly told me that a piece of academic work can be either perfect or finished, but not both (clearly lecturers suffer from this problem as well). Here, we’re paying to suffer these deadlines, so perhaps we shouldn’t get so worried about them, once they have past I usually forget my essay completely. Like this column, everything passes eventually, don’t worry about doing university work perfectly because it won’t last forever.


Image – Blanca González Alba

Be First to Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.