Everyone at Trinity University is busy. Whether this is due to school, athletics, extracurriculars, Greek life or maintaining a social life, none of us seem to have enough hours in the day to get everything we want done.
While the normal and, some might say, sane student should take 15 hours, the majority of students pile on the workload â€” they pack their schedules with 18 hours, retain membership in three student organizations, play intramural sports on the weeknights, all while having the constant pressure of homework. This is an insane amount of work, but some people are even busier than that.
This week I had the pleasure of sitting down and talk with two members of the music and theater community at Trinity: Alex Bradley, a sophomore chemistry major, and Nico Champion, a junior human communications and theater double major.
Both of them are incredibly busy individuals, so in the short amount of time I had with them, I asked them what it was like to handle such crazy amounts of work, combined with rehearsals for their respective musical groups and keeping a healthy and happy mind and body.
Austin Davidson: So guys, how many groups are each of you a part of, in addition to how many hours you are taking?
Alex Bradley: Well Iâ€™m taking 18 hours this semester and probably 18 for the rest of college. This semester Iâ€™ve been in three theater shows, one of them going on right now, â€œInto the Woods.â€ Iâ€™m also an officer and teacher for the Swing Bums dance class and I am in the Trinity Band, but due to â€œInto the Woodsâ€ and its rehearsal schedules and chemistry, I was unable to do [band] this semester. But Iâ€™ll be doing that next semester for sure.
Nico Champion: Iâ€™m also taking 18 hours this semester and â€” let me see if I can remember how many â€” APO, Mu Phi, Trinitones, Residential Life, Trinity tour guides, Chamber Singers and Trinity University Players Society.
AD: Wow, thatâ€™s a lot. Have you felt that this semester has been your busiest yet?
NC: Yeah, itâ€™s been a pretty full couple months. I also directed two shows before I did â€œInto the Woodsâ€ and Iâ€™m currently also in two other shows that weâ€™ll be performing after â€œInto The Woods.â€ So itâ€™s a lot of theater, which means on one hand itâ€™s a big workload with rehearsals till midnight and 12-hour rehearsals on Sundays â€” but theater is something I love doing so itâ€™s not like the workload is arduous or painstaking.
AD: What has been the most taxing class or activity for you two?
AB: Theater. The rehearsals eat away four hours at night and take a whole day on the weekends. Itâ€™s worth it, but itâ€™s a lot. I miss playing the tuba and Iâ€™m excited to go back next semester to the band.
NC: â€œInto the Woodsâ€ or theater in general. With rehearsals, Iâ€™ve had to cut back on how much Iâ€™m a part of the Trinitones which has been really unfortunate, but luckily Iâ€™ve still been able to be a part of the Chamber Singers and go to the competition with them.
AD: With everything that you guys do, what advice would you give to a first-year or a fellow musician who wants to do it all? What lessons have you learned from this semester?
AB: Iâ€™d say balancing your work and working efficiently are key to surviving a busy schedule. I try not to work on multiple things at once since it means I wonâ€™t be doing the one thing well. Thatâ€™s why Iâ€™m not doing the band â€” I wouldnâ€™t have enough time to really do it well. So I guess I would say balance the work you have and make sure that you do it well. Also, make time to relax and just watch a movie or an episode of something, or youâ€™ll go insane.
NC: The biggest thing that helps me is my Google calendar â€” it keeps me in check and on schedule. If I keep my calendar up to date, then I can plan out when to eat, sleep and when I have to time to just relax and try not to stress about the 8,000 things I have to do. Also, make sure you prioritize your time and energy on what is needed. So just keep organized and try to make sure you give yourself time to keep a healthy mental state.
These two guys, like all of us, lead jam-packed lives. They balance school, theater, music and life, all while maintaining a healthy mental state. While not all of us can perfectly organize a Google calendar or crack the code on how not to distract yourself with YouTube videos, we can all learn from them that it is possible to do it all and still enjoy what college has to offer.