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Balance of School, Gym, Work 

Thomas Fitzpatrick, C'24

mount st. mary's university campus

College – it's a time of growth, both academically and personally. But amidst the lectures, assignments, and exams, there's another lesson to be learned: the art of balancing school, work, and personal pursuits. As the architect of our own destinies, it falls upon us to master the delicate dance of time management, a skill I've honed to a fine art over the years.

From day one, I knew that juggling school and work would be my reality. Even in my first year, I held down a part-time job alongside my studies, a routine that became second nature as I settled into the rhythm of college life. But as the years passed, my responsibilities grew, culminating in a full-time job during my third and final year – a challenge I was more than ready to tackle head-on.

Of course, amidst the whirlwind of lectures and deadlines, there's one aspect of my life that I refuse to compromise on: my commitment to fitness. For me, the gym isn't just a place to work up a sweat; it's a sanctuary, a refuge from the stresses of everyday life. And so, I made it a priority to carve out time for my workouts, even if it meant rising before the crack of dawn to fit it into my packed schedule.

In those first two years, my routine was grueling but manageable. With classes in the mornings and work in the afternoons and evenings, finding time for the gym required careful planning and dedication. But with a little creativity and a lot of determination, I found a way to make it work, squeezing in my workouts before the sun had even risen, setting the tone for the day ahead.

Now, with the added challenge of a full-time job, I've had to get even more strategic with my time management. Crafting the perfect school schedule was key, ensuring that I finished classes at the same time each day, allowing me to seamlessly transition from campus to the gym and then to work. It was a tight schedule, to be sure, with little room for spontaneity, but I thrived on the structure it provided.

Sure, there were days when it felt like I had zero free time – days when every minute was accounted for, leaving little room for relaxation or leisure. But those moments of respite, however fleeting, became all the more precious, cherished as rare opportunities to recharge and rejuvenate before diving back into the fray.

In the end, it's all about finding that delicate balance – a balance between work and play, between ambition and self-care. And while the road may be long and the challenges many, I take comfort in knowing that I possess the resilience and determination to weather whatever storms may come my way, emerging stronger and more resilient on the other side.

Thomas Fitzpatrick, C'24