College classes: Are you a morning or a night person?

Caitlin Husted

Coming into college, most students are used to being up and at school by 8 a.m. or soon after, so when planning college schedules, it seems like a good idea to have class at early in the morning right? For some, yes. For freshman me, not so much.

Coming in freshman year, I was in a public speaking class at 9 o’clock in the morning. Signing up for it, I was like, “Wow! It’s going to be so nice not starting class until 9. I’ll have so much time to sleep in.”

However, I forgot to factor in the many late nights that would ensue over my semester.

I found that Friday mornings were the worst. Anticipating the weekend, my roommate and I would tend to stay up later on Thursday nights, making getting up in the morning even more difficult. My alarm would go off and I would just lie in bed, contemplating whether or not I actually needed to go to class that day or not. Many times, I would force myself out of bed and walk to class. I only that class one time (everyone deserves one free pass right?).

When it came time to make my schedule for the next semester, I focused on getting my classes later in the day and decided to take a night class once a week. I figured that since my brain is at its prime in the evening that it would be perfect.

I went to class that first night ready to learn and be engaged in the material, but was surprised to find myself tired and disengaged throughout the class. I figured it was just because I had done a lot of work that day, and still had high hopes for the next week. However, it was exactly the same. Each class period I found myself just being irritated that it was dark out and yet I had to sit in class and talk about books (which is normally one of my favorite things).

I would sit in class and just be wishing that I could be at my dorm snuggled up in bed doing my homework or watching TV. I couldn’t get myself to ever fully focus in my night class. This was frustrating to me because I am the weird kind of person who actually likes learning and being engaged in classes. I like being able to talk with my classmates and learn new things, which I just couldn’t seem to do in my evening classes.

I soon realized that as difficult as it was to wake up for morning classes, it was MUCH better than trying to stay engaged in a class after 5 p.m. During my time at Millikin, I have had three night classes and each has been just as awful as the last. However, my morning classes have improved. I’ve adjusted my sleep schedule and worked to become a morning person. Let me tell you, it’s completely worth it.

However, if I’m being completely honest, the best classes are the ones that start at around 10. It’s still early in the morning, so you don’t feel like you’ve lost your entire day after class, but it’s late enough that you can sleep in, if necessary, and still go to class refreshed and ready.

I’m sure night classes work for some people, but in my opinion, evenings are meant for homework, hanging with friends or just relaxing. If it’s dark out, no student should have to make the trek to class and sit for a few hours.