Our first semester at Haas is actually more like two mini quarters that put together makes up the usual 15 week semester. After all of the fun and excitement of orientation, we've been settling into school work, the internship search (yes, I know we just got to school, but it's already time for the internship), and of course playing much much much to hard. It's very different from undergrad in the sense that you don't want to be at the top of the class, but you just want to be in the middle of that curve so you end up with a decent grade at the end. This is a bit counter-intuitive for me to not constantly aim to get the best grade. Now, I just need to do enough to pass. Luckily, that means that I have enough time to work on my internship search and play hard with the rest of my class.
Our class has enjoyed lots of good times together so far. We've had toga parties, 60s parties, checked out bars in SF, bars in Berkeley, barbecued, made bets on who's going to win American's Next Top Model, and enjoyed countless lunches and coffees together. With all of these fun things going on, it's sometimes difficult to make it to all of them, let alone make sure that enough time is spent on revising your resume and doing micro homework.
Thus, I've been learning how to say no. For some reason, it's always been very difficult for me to not do things. Here there really is no choice though when there are 2 career related events, 3 fun events, and a GSI's (Graduate Student Instructor) office hours. Since I haven't perfected the art of being in 6 places at once, I have to decide which is the most important and cannot be done at another time. There's something freeing about deciding to say no that somehow leads to more saying no. It's definitely good because there are so many opportunities to do so on a daily basis.
With three more weeks left until the end of our mini quarter, we're definitely heads down on our group projects! More opportunities to say no coming up!