Class, lunch, class, dinner, library, sleep, repeat. This is what people think a pharmacy student does in a typical day. It may hold some truth, but there is a much bigger picture. Yes, pharmacy school is tough. It isn’t a walk in the park, but what doesn’t challenge you doesn’t change you. Nobody learns from an easy class. Nobody makes strides by taking the easy road. Not only do you have to challenge yourself academically, but socially, in the community, and through leadership. I’ll use something that I know a lot of people can relate to as an analogy. Let’s say you are going to the gym because you want to be summer ready. The first few times are fun because it is a new experience and you are making steady progress, but after a while the workouts become stale. No longer are you working your hardest, and as a result you aren’t making nearly as much progress. You aren’t finding the same early success and you become discouraged and quit. This happens much too often for college students. You dive into school work head first without any other types of outlet. What these students don’t realize is by finding organizations, hobbies, and other things of interest you will be more committed to school work and achievements. If our imaginary lifter would have mixed up the routines, tried different compound exercises, and changed the scenery and frequency they would have made more gains and not have lost interest. This is why I’m such a big advocate for trying out every different avenue at STLCOP. I’ve held positions in SBU, worked as an RA, am getting much more involved with SPA and MPA, and have tried out research at the Radiation Oncology Center at Wash U. You may think I’m working myself too thin, but I truly believe that my grades would have been worse had I not taken on so much. I have an invested interest in the college in things besides just classwork. I work to challenge myself in everything that I participate in. I’m developing leadership, interpersonal, and academic skills. I highly recommend to any newcomer to give any interest you possible have an attempt. It’s absolutely fine to try something out, find out you don’t like it, and move on to the next interest. I’m not saying don’t continue to strive for excellence in the classroom. If you go to the gym and don’t do the core exercises like squatting, bench press, running, so on and so forth, then you won’t be making much progress. Find a happy medium where you can succeed, but continue to challenge yourself outside of schoolwork.