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The Sound of Music Remixed: The Saga That Was Picking My Classes

Posted by on Sunday, December 8, 2013 in Academics, College Life, Freshman Life, General Information, Music, Studying.

I’ve recently been inspired by Carrie Underwood’s live TV performance in the Sound of Music, so I now proudly, unabashedly present my own recreation of one of my favorite songs from this magical musical, all about picking my schedule. Happy Holidays. Happy Finals-Procrastinating. Happy Reading.

CASPAR advisors and picking my classes, getting through AXLE and making a schedule.
Scrolling through YES ‘til my little head spins, these are a few of my favorite things.
Finding the classes that fit in your schedule, trying to find ones that aren’t at 8:10
Trying to plan out my life for this spring, these are a few of my favorite things.
Not knowing my major makes this process so hard, that’s why I turned to my CASPAR advisor.
Vanderbilt offers just so many classes; this is a part of my major dilemma.
I could take math,
Or a psych class,
Or a brand new language.
I simply can’t pick from all of these choices
But I know I must choose some.
Finding the classes that fit in your schedule, trying to find ones that aren’t at 8:10

I know, I know. I could give Rodgers and Hammerstein a run for their money. But aside from my musical, compositional gift, the point of this masterpiece is to demonstrate my thought process as I struggled to pick just four or five classes for each of my first two semesters at Vanderbilt.

When I sat down to pick out my classes, both in June for this semester and in November for the spring semester, I knew I was in for a real challenge. One of the many benefits of being a student here at Vanderbilt is that there are classes for virtually anything you could want to study. You can take a dozen different languages, learn about people on a global scale or a molecular one, discuss literature or current events, or even take a class on country music (yes, this is real life.) So I was faced with the terribly difficult problem of sifting through hundreds, if not thousands, of classes on YES to figure out what my schedule would look like. (Cue the Mission Impossible theme song.) How did I do this? Honestly, I’m not entirely sure, but it did happen. Twice. (Go me.)

I am a freshman in college. I am 18 years old. I don’t know what I want the rest of my life to look like or where I want to go after Vanderbilt. Sometimes this is invigorating and exciting. Other times, for instance when I have to pick four or five classes out of hundreds, this is overwhelming. Some of my friends know what they want to do with their lives, or at least they have a pretty good idea. They want to be teachers, doctors, lawyers, musicians, politicians, and so many other things. And that’s awesome; most of the time I’m just really proud of and happy for them. But I envied them when it came time to pick out classes and they already knew exactly what they wanted to take.

So I had to do a bit more reflecting and experimenting with my schedule than some of my friends. I met with my CASPAR advisor (aka fairy godmother of academic advice) and talked through my options and my plan to get through the requirements, specifically the AXLE requirements. These are basically the core requirements for Arts and Science students at Vanderbilt, and, though 13 courses sometimes seems like a lot, it is actually pretty manageable, at least as far as I can tell so far. I’ve actually enjoyed getting to justify my “random” classes because they fulfill AXLE requirements. It’s a good excuse to explore.

Anyway, after all my consulting, reflection and playing on YES, here are pictures of the schedules I have come up with for this year. Obviously, I can’t yet speak to the spring semester, but I have loved my classes this semester. Also, if you look at this and think “Clearly with all the pre-med prerequisites she’s taking, she wants to go to med school,” I admit it may seem like that, but I’m honestly not sure what I want to do. I just don’t want to give up on that possibility yet, which means I have to start the prereqs now. Also, contrary to popular belief, Organic Chemistry and Calculus are used for other things than med school too.

As they say, “so long, farewell, auf weidersehn, adieu.”

Fall 2013 semester class schedule
Spring 2014 semester classes as of now!

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