As a college student, one of the scariest moments is when you start feeling sick. Not only are you far away from home, but you alone are responsible for letting your professors know that you won't be in class. Now, if you go to a big university and have all of your classes in huge auditoriums, chances are you've never faced this problem before and you make a habit out of skipping class. But when you go to a small school like I do (Go Dutch!), most professors start class by taking attendance and always know who's missing. When it's time to email your professors, there are a few anxious thoughts you probably have.
1. How can I word this so that they actually believe me?
Last school year, I had tonsillitis three times in five months and actually ended up in the hospital due to dehydration. I never knew how detailed I should be in my emails to the professors. Saying that I "wasn't feeling well" didn't seem to cut it, yet the "cold sweats and unable to breathe or drink anything" felt too personal and dramatic.
2. If I feel better around lunch, should I risk running into the professor in the cafeteria or just make more ramen?
Because, when you go to a small school, chances are pretty high that you will run into your professor somewhere outside of the classroom.
3. Should I bring a doctor's note to prove that I really am sick?
How many times can I use the "tonsillitis" excuse before they begin to think that I really just like to sleep in?
4. Which class could I sleep through and not be behind?
We all have that one class that you don't really need to be present for in order to pass.
The good thing about going to a small school is that professors really do notice when you aren't in class. They also see you enough to recognize when you aren't feeling like yourself. Yes, I did use my sick days, but my professors were always understanding. Being sick away from home can be scary, but it's important to take the time to rest and feel better before jumping head first back into your crazy college schedule.