Everyone Does Life At Their Own Pace, Don't Ridicule Me For Doing Mine Fast

Everyone Does Life At Their Own Pace, Don't Ridicule Me For Doing Mine Fast

I'm not rushing "the best years of my life," or any years, really.


Ever since I decided to enroll in college and start working towards my associates degree at 14 while simultaneously taking high school classes to get my diploma, a lot of the comments made to me regarding my decision were about how I was wasting my time and rushing to grow up.

But I can tell you right now, I was doing neither of those things. While enrolled in both high school and college courses, I still made time to do the things I enjoyed. I went to football games. I hung out with my friends. I even became the varsity soccer team manager and got my first part-time job.

Speeding up my schooling process wasn't me ignoring the opportunities and people I had in front of me, nor was it a blindly made decision. It was hard work. It was honoring commitment and dedication. It was success.

When I graduated from high school and college in the same month, I got snide comments about how I should make sure not to rush my time at Clemson because I didn't need to grow up so fast. But again, I didn't listen.

I sit in class everyday next to people two years older than me and I hold my own. I bring great things to the table and I am respected and treated just as equally as my older colleagues.

I will graduate a year and a half early. I don't regret it.

I go to all the football and basketball games. I set aside every weekend to spend with my friends. I still make time to come visit my family.

I don't regret any of the "fast-track" decisions that I've made in my life. I have learned great lessons from them. I have gained amazing friends, regardless of age and life path. I have chosen to look on my decisions and success with hope and joy for the future instead of mourning the past and present. Living fast has taught me to look on every precious moment with gratitude and to put my heart and soul into everything I do and everyone I meet.

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I Learned Forensic Science In One Day For HOSA SLC 2019 And Still Placed Top Ten

We all have those days where we have to cram for an exam you know nothing about the night before, but have you tried to study for it the day of the exam? I never knew I would find myself in this situation until I went to HOSA SLC. With minimal study time, my partner, Kasey Park, and I were still able to place in the Top Ten in Georgia.

Joel Lee
Joel Lee

As a member of my school's chapter of HOSA (Health Occupations Students of America), I went to SLC (State Leadership Conference), where members all over the state of Georgia come to Atlanta to compete in a variety of competitions in the field of Science and Healthcare. All members can pick only one competition to participate in, and the guidelines and rules for each event are posted on the HOSA website.

The event I chose was Forensic Medicine, which requires a team of two people to take a written exam about Forensic Science (Round 1) and write a death report for a case study (Round 2). You must pass Round 1 to move on to Round 2. I worked with a good friend of mine, Kasey Park, for this event. HOSA recommended two textbooks to study for the event: Forensic Science: Fundamentals & Investigations 2nd Edition and Forensic Science: An Introduction to Scientific and Investigative Techniques, Fourth Edition.

Kasey and I both had the books, since Winter Break of our sophomore year (2018-2019), and we both agreed to start studying during winter break. Instead, we both completely forgot about it and when we returned to school after the break, we knew we still had time to study, since SLC was in March. We made a game plan of what chapters to read and when to read them, and we agreed to meet for reviewing the chapters we read. But, it didn't happen.

This procrastination continued about a day before we needed to leave for SLC, and we both realized we needed to study two thick textbooks in about 24 hours. We both knew at this point we just needed to cram as much information we could possibly fit into our brains.

The way we crammed was we both read the textbook as fast as possible and absorbing information as we go. Even though will not understand everything, we can still get a lot of information that can help us do well.

We studied on the way to SLC and before the Round 1 exam, so we can have the best chance possible when taking the test. My partner and I took the Round 1 exam during the afternoon, and we both we did alright, but not good, so we were worried about whether or not we made the second round. We got a notification in the evening that we made to Round 2. Kasey and I started to study all night and during the morning to cram as much information as we could. A little before noon, we took the Round 2 Case Study Test, and we thought it was a breeze.

Since we finished our event, we could finally hang out with friends from our school, as well as students from other schools. I meant so many new people at HOSA SLC. The next day, we went to the award ceremony, and my partner and I did not get in the Top 5, so we were not recognized. But later we were informed that we got 9th place, which we were happy with since we did not study very much for this exam.

From my experiences ar HOSA SLC, I have learned many things and met many new people. I would recommend that if you have a testing event, you should start to study prior to SLC to give yourself the most amount of time to study before the test. I feel that cramming last minute at SLC is ineffective and very stressful. I also think that you should try to meet new people since the conference is for members all over the state of Georgia.

If you are a middle or high schooler, I would recommend attending HOSA SLC, as it will be a memory you will never forget.

Joel Lee
Joel Lee

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