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4 Tips for SPS Students Balancing School Work & Family Life During the Holidays


During the holidays, adult learners feel the pull between school work and family – here are some quick tips to manage the stress.

The holidays are coming. For many of us, that means preparing our homes, our calendars, and our families for guests, big meals, parties, gift-giving and travel. All while managing the regular work commitments – and the end-of-year pressures. 

Adult learners, like the students in our online Masters and certificate programs, are experiencing all that – and the end of the academic semester with final deadlines, projects, and exams. 

Balancing family commitments, work expectations, and coursework during the holidays can be stressful. Here are four tips from our Student Services Team to organize your commitments to your academic program, so you can focus your time and energy on the people and experiences that make this time of year so special. 

Schedule Time for Assignments and Projects
As an adult learner juggling a lot of priorities, you most likely review the syllabus at the start of the mini term and plan your time accordingly. With the Thanksgiving holiday quickly approaching you may need to adjust your schedule. 

If possible, work ahead and plan to attend your weekly synchronous sessions – or block out time on your calendar to review the recordings. Subscribe to the course discussion board conversations as a reminder to reply to classmates’ posts. Check out the Refreshers section in the Pearl Cafe for discussion board tips and setting your notifications in Canvas. 

Communicate Your Needs
It is important to advocate for yourself – especially during this time of the year. As we get ready to embark on a new year, consider what you need to continue to be successful. 

Are there academic, technical or well-being resources you would like added to the Pearl Cafe? Are there career-related webinars or social gatherings you would like to participate in during the coming year? Share your thoughts about how we can improve your Wake Forest experience at stuserv@wfu.edu and always share your feedback via your end of course evaluation! Your anonymous feedback helps improve the course and impacts future course and program development. 

Register Now for Spring Courses
If you are a continuing student, work with your Student Success Manager to determine what classes you need to take in the Spring and register via the Wake Information Network (WIN) now. Registering and reviewing the list of required course materials for your classes can be done prior to the end of the semester and is recommended especially if you need assistance from the SPS Associate Registrar.

Enjoy the Holiday Break
The time between the end of the School of Professional Studies’ fall semester and the start of spring semester is a lengthy break. Unlike the time between our other minis (four days!), Fall 2 ends on December 7th and Spring 1 won’t start until January 9. You’re likely juggling preparation for the December holidays, work, and family or friend fun and obligations, so find some time for YOU during this four-week break. 

If there’s anything we do to support your success before the end of this semester, please do not hesitate to contact us. 

We can’t wait to see you recharged and ready to return to classes in the new year.