Tag Archives: Finals

Mid-Terms, Finals and Blue Books (80 Weeks To Go)

By Kiera Reilly, C’93

The weekend of October 28-29, 2016 marked 80 weeks until the 25th Reunion of the Penn Class of 1993 (May 11 – 13, 2018)! And we continue the countdown to our reunion by looking back at memories of our time at Penn.

I have a box of old papers and things I saved, and as I sorted through it, I hoped to find ticket stubs from Penn Football and Basketball games. Or maybe those square colored paper invites to parties, or a program from a student performing art group. Surprisingly, I do not seem to have many, if any, of these items. But what I did save? My blue books from Econ 1 mid-terms and exams from our first semester of Freshman year!

Econ 1 exam blue book from the University of Pennsylvania courtesty Kiera Reilly

This must be from our first mid-term in Econ 1, first semester Freshman year.

Flipping through my answers to the exam, there are red marks with apparently the number of points I scored on each question (but no idea how much each question was worth), and a final tally of the points I earned on the exam. No final grade, or context to put the final point total.

Inside the front and back cover of each booklet is the Code of Academic Integrity, and there was a place to sign your name on the back cover.

I have not read through my answers, and probably have not looked at these books since we graduated. But I am glad I saved them, if only to vaguely remember what taking an exam was like twenty-seven years ago in the ground floor of Williams Hall.

Exam Blue book for Kiera Reilly Econ 1 class at University of Pennsylvania

Based on the date, this must be from a second mid-term or exam of Econ 1 from our first semester Freshman year.

Do you remember the exam blue-books? Did you save any of your exams?

Do you have old photos or mementos from our time at Penn? Photos of Spring Fling? Football at Franklin Field? Classes at DRL? We are taking a trip down memory lane and would love for you to share your memories with our class in a future post. Please email us upenn1993@gmail.com!



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Filed under 25th Reunion, Class of 1993, Kiera R., Uncategorized

A Different Kind of Study Break

Author: Carolyn Grace, C’16

In case you haven’t heard yet, Quakers, Finals Season is in full swing.  This explains why I haven’t posted recently, but with 1 final and 2 papers already completed I am back in the blogging game!

I am sure many of you remember from your college days the various “study breaks” offered by different college houses and groups at Penn.  Anything for free coffee and muffins, right?  This year, however, I had the pleasure of taking a study break that was a bit more, well, unconventional.

Planning the College Christmas Party is a delicate art.  It’s more than just ugly sweaters.  One needs the perfect amount of hors d’oeuvres and refreshments, one or two competitive games, and of course a rockin’ holiday playlist.  Fortunately, the lovely ladies in Harnwell Room 1712 are experts at throwing the ultimate College Christmas Party.

Alexa, Leah, Katie, and Nina have been some of my closest friends at Penn since my pre-orientation program and NSO.  Last year, they planned an awesome Christmas party from Alexa’s tiny single in the Quad, and luckily they had a bit more to work with this year in their apartment.   Leah baked mini quiches, Nina made latkes, Alexa and Katie ran the Post-It Note game and Christmas Bingo, and I had the honor of making the playlist.

Again, the festivities were a success!  Not only because of food, games, and music, but more so because of the company.  It’s very easy to get caught up in the gloom and doom of finals season.  I can feel bogged down by the papers and the exams, of course.  But one evening with friends is enough to remind me that I’m not in this alone.  We all have crazy amounts of work, but we also have each other as study buddies or necessary distractions.  Academics are an integral part of life at Penn.  I’d like to argue, however, that friendships are just as – if not more – important.

Happy Holidays from Harnwell 1712!

Happy Holidays from Harnwell 1712!

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Filed under Campus Life, Carolyn G., Events, Food Fiends, Photos, Student Perspective, Video, Videos

To Sleep or Not to Sleep?

Christine Uyemera, SEAS ’13

As the end of the semester draws near, students have to make the ultimate decision: to sleep or not to sleep?

Finals week is the most stressful time for everyone (minus those few lucky freshmen or seniors who got away with taking only three classes, pass/fail classes, or classes that give the option to drop the final exam grade). Between projects, papers, gift-buying, hanging out with friends before going home, and the finals themselves, it often feels like there aren’t physically enough hours in the day to get everything done that we need to. How can we possibly make good grades and still be sane? What is the right combination of sleep and other things? There are three main approaches that three different types of students take to solving this equation:

1. Sleepless Sallys: One option that some  students consider is to give up as much sleep as possible to make time for everything else. This is normally manifested in multiple all-nighters, sometimes consecutive ones, with 1-2 hour “power naps” sprinkled into the schedule and taken only when absolutely necessary (typically these naps are involuntary). Sleepless Sallys can be found with a Vente Starbucks coffee at any given time. Although they might complain about their workload, friends of Sleepless Sallys can see it in their eyes. They have semi-permanent setups in Van Pelt/Houston Hall/ Huntsman and will probably be living there 20-24 hours of the day. A typical day for a Sleepless Sally begins at the library during either day or night and has no clear end, despite the so-called sunrise and sunset.

2. Balanced Bettys: Despite students’ constant insistence that they have no idea how so much work piled up, and there’s no way they could have ever gotten it all done before now, there are always students who actually started the project the day it was given out/read the chapters every week before lecture/followed the timeline for the research paper. At least enough to where Reading Days and Finals week is manageable. Finals week is truly no big deal at all to Balanced Bettys, who spend a scheduled, moderate 2-4 hours per day working or studying and are free to do their Christmas shopping in the mornings and go to end-of-semester BYOBs with their friends at night. Balanced Bettys are probably in the College, and will almost certainly protest that they are just as stressed and busy as anyone else.


3. Party Pats: Finally, there are the students who put immediate happiness before all else. Party Pats pull all-nighters in a different way. They wouldn’t be caught dead staying up late for schoolwork and spend ample time on their holiday shopping and end-of-the-year friend-visiting. They will spend a few hours here and there looking at course material when they can’t find anyone else to hang out with or they need a break from the TV show marathon they’ve been watching. However, the majority of any project-doing or exam-studying is done the night before or the day of. Party Pats can exists in either extreme academically: they will either make the A+ on the exam regardless of the amount of time spent studying or fail the class completely. Either way, Party Pats live by the phrases “oh ,well,” and “whatever…”

All three of the these student types have their pros and cons. The choice is really dependent on what kind of student you’ve been all semester, your personal expectations, and how much pressure you can take before going insane. Freshmen will be struggling to decide who they are going to be while upperclassmen have known from day one of finals week. Regardless, come December 22nd, it will ALL be over and we students can go into hibernation mode for a few weeks before starting all over again.

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Filed under Academics, Christine U., Student Perspective