UNDERGRADUATE ADMISSIONS at WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY in ST. LOUIS

A Day in the Life

Sophomore year, in my opinion, is woefully underrated. Coming into your second year of college, you have the information you need to pick a stellar class schedule, the best study spots locked away in your memory, and great friends to support you when things get busy and chaotic.

Even still, a day in the life of a sophomore is not always too unpredictable.

On a typical Monday, I’ll wake up at 5 to hit the gym by 6. (It’s super early, but totally worth it.) I work out, shower, and then walk to class, which is luckily in a building only a few minutes away from my dorm. On Mondays, my first class is an 8:30 A.M. section of “Present Moral Problems”, which has helped me get a better grasp on my interest in philosophy and changed the way I evaluate logic and argument.

Immediately after, I have second level Russian. Within my major, students pick a language to study all four years of undergrad. I’ve always loved Russian literature and am working on integrating it into my long-term academic plans, and that’s how I’ve ended up in my second year with Professor Palatnik. This course has opened my eyes to the benefits of studying culture through language and the importance of being as global a citizen as possible.

We spend the class discussing vocabulary and grammar in the context of weddings. Professor Palatnik is really good about switching into a little bit of English when our blank stares hint that we might have missed something. By the middle of class, however, everyone is usually pretty acclimated to our other language and its exciting to understand a video or a news article that seems harder than what we’re used to.

After Russian ends at 11, I get lunch and do some work. My favorite spot is Holmes’ Lounge. It always has great sandwiches and wraps with meats from the carvery station or really great soups, not to mention that the ceiling in the dining room area is amazing.

After lunch, I head to “Becoming Modern”, a five person seminar class on Virginia Woolf and her coalition of writers and artists. Right now we’re delving into E.M. Forster’s Howard’s End, and are starting to get a better picture of the late Victorian/early Edwardian era. I’ve never taken a course relatively centered on just one person, so the formatting of this one has been really refreshing. Professor Milder has guided us through biography, autobiography, and the literature of the inner circle in just a few weeks. Building up the context of Virginia Woolf as a person and a writer in this way has really driven up the suspense around studying her actual texts!

Class ends at 2:30 P.M. and I head back to my dorm. I usually put on some comfier clothes (fuzzy socks because St. Louis can get chilly even in early October) and get through a few readings for one of my Tuesday courses, “Classical to Renaissance Literature”. We’re working with one of Sophocles’ tragedies and transitioning to a few Japanese playwrights as well. I’m very excited to see this course feature material not usually considered canonical. East Asian literature deserves much more attention.

Next, I usually edit a short story for my fiction writing class or the article that I’m working on for The River, our literary journalism magazine. Couple that with finishing my Russian homework and I’m finally able to grab some dinner with friends or my suite and unwind for a little bit.

Then its back to my dorm to turn the thermostat down and get some sleep. I definitely have to recharge before I can do it all over again!