The academic year has finally begun and we are already through the first week of classes at the University of Cincinnati, and that means that syllabus week has already come and gone! Now, there are some people that don't give a shit about syllabus week and never even look at it. Then there are some people, like myself, who somewhat live off of their syllabus and use it as their guide for the class.

To me, the two most important parts of the syllabus are (1) the daily schedule and (2) the attendance policy. Now clearly each professor has a different daily schedule for their class, however, the daily schedules that are embedded in each syllabus are like a Bible to me. Again, I realize that some students don't care about this at all and just throw the syllabus away. However, I have never talked to a student that doesn't take note of a professor's attendance policy regardless of where their syllabus ends up.

College students know that every professor, with the exception of maybe two or three, gives their students a "free pass" or a set number of penalty-free absences for their class. Most students definitely take advantage of their given number of free absences, whether it is a planned skip or a sick day. But I got to say, I do not fall into this category of students and it is not something that often crosses my mind. Over the past two years here at UC, I have calculated that I have missed a total of 5 classes. One class, I missed because I was ill to the point that I had to go to the hospital, two classes I missed due to being in academic meetings. And the last two I admit that I missed because I was mentally exhausted and just needed a break. I know that it might sound crazy, but as a perfectionist, it is in my DNA to become stressed and anxious when I miss class.

Now, I am not saying that using your free absences is a bad thing, it may have only been twice in two years but I have done it before. However, after taking two courses with the same professor, and in the process of a third, there is a bolded sentence in all of her syllabi that always pops into my head when I think about skipping class. She always writes, "you will get as much out of the class as you put into it." And the truth is, she is right. Therefore, I suggest that you ask yourself, "why do I constantly want to skip my classes?"

Not only are you paying to go to school here, but your professors are going to get paid whether you show up to your classes or not and therefore don't give a shit. So, at the end of the semester when you are sitting in your professor's office freaking out and maybe even crying because your grade is in the toilet, that is when they will deliver the bad news without feeling an ounce of remorse for you. And that news will be something crazy like that you need about a 110% on the final exam to bring your grade up to pass the class. It is then that you are going to wish that you didn't skip all of those classes. So I just advise you to keep in mind that you will get as much out of the class as you put into it.