Student Spotlight

By Shae McCoy


We all know that going to college isn’t always smooth sailing. There are a lot of times where we want to throw in the towel and second guess the reason why we are even in college to begin with. Tuition, exams, and homework are just a few of the things that may stress us throughout the semester, but there are many outside forces that may be contributing factors as well. Here are some testimonies from our peers about how they deal or have dealt with stress while school is in session.


Mari Rakijas

“I loved UB. My time there was the happiest 3 years of my life. But law school was definitely not easy and stressful as all get out! I can’t recommend enough how helpful it was to have a pet. Sometimes you just need to vent to someone who won’t talk back! Even after the roughest day, I knew I could snuggle with my cat and I felt like everything was going to be okay. Plus they make great moot court practice audiences.

Dominic Cromwell

“During my time at UB, each semester was a different story between my personal life and actual school life. I can say that what helped me make it through college was my PlayStation 3. I know it sounds silly but every night my friends and I would play the game together at 11pm. We get all of our work finished before then. We did this every night so it was kind of like our treat to ourselves for a long day of work.”

A’Jasia Summerville

“To ask how one gets through stress, that to me is asking how Houdini escapes a padlocked room. No actual answer, just assumptions. Getting through stress, there is no set answer or remedy. How I’ve gotten through stress, well that’s a story. I’ve managed by being a workaholic and redirecting my energy elsewise. When I have deadlines to meet, I work up until then. I work myself near exhaustion, I procrastinate to the bitten end, and then I grind to the bone. That has perhaps gotten me through all 11 semesters while studying at University of Baltimore.”

Taylor Walker

“I’m an alumni of University of Baltimore. I graduated four years ago but I remember the challenges I faced while going to UB and developed a routine for dealing with stress that I continue to carry while navigating my day to day life as a post-grad. While in school, I remained a full time student all four years at UB, never dropping below four classes per semester. I developed a habit of carrying a planner during my fall semester sophomore year. I live by it as it was my bible. Instead of simply writing my homework assignments in it, I chose to us my planner as a To-Do list. I made a goal to complete three tasks a day per my To-Do lists and reward myself for my accomplishments.I think what helped me the most was choosing to perfect my time management skills. I believed if I became better at time management, it’d be likely that I’d be less stressed and not feel too overwhelmed. But if I felt a moment of weakness I had other things that helped me, as well. Other methods I used while dealing with the stress of school are talking to one consistent friend I trusted in confiding my issues in and taking time to myself doing something I enjoyed such as play the Sims or read a book. I mastered all these thing that even now when I feel stressed, I go back to these same tasks to mellow.”

Anita McCoy

“Graduating from UB was one of the best days of my life, another milestone, another accomplishment., but… the stress I dealt with, was another story. Freshmen year, going into college, I must say I didn’t know exactly what I was getting into, nevertheless, I got through. Some different ways I was able to get through stress was talking it out to some colleagues, trying not to get overwhelmed, taking some time to myself, clearing my head and never giving up. It’s important to enjoy college, and do what you can to not get flustered. I had to stay organized, get a planner, plan every assignment, my study sessions, etc. so that I would have time to complete tasks and not procrastinate. Time management is very important, and necessary. Get rest, it seems impossible but its not. Some nights I only was able to sleep for maybe 4-5 hours, but that wasn’t an every night routine for me. It was typically during finals, after my late night studies and closing out the semester.

Keep in mind that graduation is the goal and if you are stress- ing, its going to make that day seem so far away.”

Shawn Newsome Jr.

“I’m one semester away from graduation, and all I can think about is how much progress I’ve made throughout the years. One thing that college taught me was that I should never be afraid to ask for help. Another is that support can be very crucial to one’s success. From the time that I started college in the fall of 2012 to fall 2014, I felt that I could give 60%- 70% of my effort and get through with no problem. I was wrong. My toxic relationship weighed me down. I received no motivation to do better, no one to push me. I failed all of my classes in the fall of 2014 due to my failure to attend classes and my refusal to put effort into topics that didn’t interest me. In the spring of 2015, I put a team together to keep me on my toes, and remind me of that fact that I can do much better than what I displayed. My philosophy professor, Steven Scalet, was a huge help with bringing me to open my mind. My mentor from the BMALE program, Ray McCree, checked with me often to hear of my progress and anything that troubled me outside of school. My friends reminded me of how great I am, and joined me on my journey to become a better version of myself. I handled stress by exercising consistently, and making it an obligation to take some free time from the loads of work. Resting is definitely needed for growth. Without that rest, you tire yourself out much quicker.”

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