Higher Education & Student Affairs

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Rejoicing in the Chaos by Megan Foo

Megan Foo, Graduate Hall Director in Texana

I’m a planner-and-checklist kind of person. I love filling in my planner at the beginning of the semester and giving structure to the chaos that accompanies the HESA program and an apprenticeship as a Graduate Residence Hall Director: class assignments, readings, meetings with students, trying to maintain a healthy lifestyle, getting enough sleep, and other duties as assigned. It’s not a secret or a surprise that grad school places a lot of demands on your time.

I spend some time at the beginning of every week creating my schedule and checklist for the week.  I plan out my week: classes, meetings, office time, workouts, and time to study. I even leave some empty time as a buffer, just in case I needed to add something at the last minute. I also make a checklist of all the class-related things and another list of all the work-related things I need to accomplish between Monday and Friday. After a year in the HESA program, I’ve found that this kind of organization is necessary if I want to remember everything, get things done, and feel like I know what’s happening in my life.

A few weeks ago, I sat down on a Sunday night and planned out my week. Everything was going according to plan until chaos struck on Friday afternoon. I was in the middle of an afternoon full of meetings with students when I got a phone call about something that needed immediate attention. By the time I finished handling the situation, I was stressed out, tired, and worried about how I was going to find time to reschedule the meetings I had missed. As I was sitting at home that evening, Psalm 118:24 came to mind: “Today is the day the Lord has made. Let us rejoice and be glad in it.”

Through everything that grad school throws at me—the long checklists of things I need to read for class, the late nights spent finishing up that paper that I should have started about a week and a half ago, the unexpected emergencies that pop up, and the seemingly-endless emails in my inbox—I’m reminded of what a privilege it is to study and work at Baylor. Not only do I get to learn how to be a student affairs professional, but I get to do so in a community of people who are committed to loving God and loving others. How incredible is that?

When you work in student affairs, you never know what the next hour is going to bring. If an emergency comes up, my carefully planned schedule goes out the window. Life happens, priorities shift, and plans change. Though these things are all challenges to my schedule-and-routine-loving self, the Lord is using them to refine my character, change my attitude, and remind me that each day is a blessing. He is teaching me to be grateful for this season of life in grad school. He is teaching me to rejoice in the chaos.

megan_michener • September 11, 2017

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