How to distribute time in Harvard? (article c video)
22.09.17
How to distribute time in Harvard? (article c video)

Skill3

10 Required Student Skills at Harvard University

Skill # 3: Time Management

As you already understood from the previous article, the academic life of a Harvard student is intense, and you cannot do without the ability to learn on your own. And this skill exists in close connection with the skill of time management. The ability to prioritize and effectively organize your time will allow you not only to cope with the academic part, but also make the most of the unique resources of the university.

Of course, I also don’t know about all the possibilities myself, so I’ll tell you about those for which it’s just necessary to learn how to plan and distribute your time correctly.

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What else does Harvard student need to free up time for?

Well of course, to work and internships! Such a large employer as Harvard University, or any other similar university, exists at the expense of the work of students. All students, including international ones, can work on campus (for international students, the limit is 20 hours per week). Even working 10-12 hours a week, almost a third of the working week you will be busy. The good news is that you can create a schedule grid yourself that is convenient for you. However, is it worth it to spend time so you don’t sleep at night?

With an average salary of $ 12,5 per hour for undergraduate students and about $ 20 for graduate students, this is certainly a great opportunity to make money on coffee and weekend entertainment, and sometimes even on spring breaks in Mexico. In fact, work is a very important component of career development and resume building, especially for international students. It is within the framework of the work that students will be able to master the etiquette of professional communication and communications, which to a large extent can differ from the usual home. In addition, at Harvard you can find a really interesting job at any of the schools of your interest. Thus, you will receive an additional platform for the acquisition of practical skills, as well as the development of a network of acquaintances and mentors.

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Harvard University Job Search Page Screenshot

Research students, especially international students, often work in the form of unpaid work or internships. If you are lucky enough to get into the laboratory and help with the research, then most likely it will be an unpaid activity, since most of the research is financed from the federal budget and funds. So, this semester I started working as part of the Laboratory “Brain, Experience and Education”, and instead of paying, I get an additional “course” in transcript and unique experience, and spend about 8 hours of my time.

Harvard has such unique resources that you cannot go past. For example, Harvard Innovation Lab. It should be noted that wherever you go, no matter what topic you speak, everything is everywhere about the same thing - that “you need to learn to make innovations” (“learn to innovate”). And the university really gives a lot to support the innovative spirit of students, providing practical tools, access to experts and even funding opportunities. iLAB is a kind of incubator where a student of any course and any specialty with an unformed idea or simple question, with a business plan or an active startup can come. iLAB will not appropriate your idea and will not require a stake in the company. For example, I am a frequent visitor here and actively take the opportunity to meet with experts and business leaders from various industries who help me bring to mind a new business project. You, of course, remember that communication and networking are the most important assets that you acquire during training, so sometimes you just need to be here to communicate, get to know each other and exchange ideas. And of course, wherever in iLAB you can take courses on virtual and augmented reality, start-up trainings and take part in an investment challenge and, perhaps, win a President of Harvard grant in the amount of $ 100.

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Photo from Harvard Innovation Lab

And you also need to leave time to participate in various student organizations. Of the hundreds of existing organizations, everyone here will find something to their liking, and if they do not, then they can start a new club and cultivate a new culture within the university.

At the end of each week, the Student Relations Department sends a calendar of events for the coming week - there are lectures with experts, practical workshops, recruiting events with companies, etc. You can analyze and plan the upcoming week in advance.

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Photo from a meeting of a student organization

And of course, sports teams or just visiting any Harvard gym for $ 150 a year!

I would like to note the general high pace of students' lives. And this is not an accident. The university cultivates and supports just such an environment by accepting students of a certain profile. Assessment of the candidate’s skills in managing time and multitasking occurs at the stage of consideration of the application. In addition to academic data, the selection committee pays special attention to the study of your extracurricular activities. And here it is important to understand that not their quantity, but the quality, duration, depth of immersion, as well as the results of your participation will play a decisive role!

Students with access to the same resources, even at Harvard, may have a completely different experience. It is the skill of time management in tandem with the already mentioned goal-setting skill (see Skill 1: Goal-setting) that will probably allow you to achieve goals faster than you planned. And perhaps, due to new experience, these goals will generally change and you will suddenly find your calling ...

In the next plot, we will return to one of the important academic skills. In the meantime, you can rate pass the testto evaluate how good your time management skill is and, if necessary, start working on it right now.

Author: Evgenia Efremova, graduate student at Harvard University
and academic director of Global Ambassador

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