As the new semester begins, there is always a adjustment period to the new courses and seeing all your classmates again. As a perspective student, one of my biggest questions was about how the courses were structured and what my schedule would look like. Now, as a current student, I am able to enjoy all the flexibility and course availability to design my schedule to address my degree requirements and personal interests. With that, as a dual degree student, I am able to take some of my sustainable international development courses, while technically being in my global health policy & management year. I made sure to account for my interests when planning my schedule, and now that classes have started, I’m glad I did.
This semester I am taking 18 credits, with a few half semester courses and two full semester courses. My course topics range from econometrics, to demography, to monitoring and evaluation. Generally, each of my classes meets for just under three hours, and this semester, all courses are in person. This has been great for collaboration and group discussions. My schedule has either a full day, with both a morning and afternoon class, or just a half day. Having half days allows me to work on projects, other assignments and readings for class. Most morning classes start around 9, and the afternoon classes begin around 2. Even with the longer time block, there is a break midday to hang out with your classmates, eat lunch and relax before your next course starts.
The coursework for each of course is rather variable and depends on the style, length and professor of the class. It is great that the courses often have a mix of individual and group projects, as well as assignments you create your own path for. For example, students are often allowed to chose a subject area of interest within a set of criteria. This helps keep the assignments interesting and see how all students bring in something unique to your learning experience.
Thus far in my time at Heller, I have learned that your experience is up to you and to take time to explore your interests, both in and out of the classroom. I make sure to have time for my extracurricular activities like volunteering and reading, so while each semester brings new opportunities to explore, remember to continue to growing outside the classroom too.