Photo of students using the study pods on the fourth floor of the Brown Family House of Learning.

I am a fourth year Bachelor of Business Administration student at TRU. I am proud to say I have been a Dean’s List student for four consecutive semesters as well! The Dean’s List includes students whose GPA is 3.5 or higher. With this designation, I am recognized as a hardworking and disciplined student. However, the truth is that I was not always this student. 

In high school, I was someone with high grades and found that I didn’t need to study much to achieve them. I graduated with Principle’s List and was recognized as the top 5% of my graduating class. In 2019, I started my first year of university at TRU. I felt that it would be easy; why would I have to study in university if I barely did in high school? I spent a fraction of my time doing homework and the rest of it I spent hanging out with friends or working. When it came time for exams, I studied, but not effectively and not very much, which resulted in final grades I was not pleased with. I just thought it was difficult and that these grades were my new reality since university is more challenging. The next semester I repeated the same pattern, especially when halfway through, Covid started, and school transitioned to online learning. My first-year grades reflect my poor study habits and my little care for school.  

Although quarantine was a difficult time for everyone, it was by far the best thing that happened to my studies. Spending all that time at home and reflecting, I realized that I had to change something to improve my grades, especially with courses being entirely online. I researched and tried different study habits, and I asked my friends and peers what they do to study and to stay organized. I bought a to-do list/planner and decided this was my best bet to stay organized. I put aside time every day to study and to do homework, and I made this a habit. I learned that the motivation to do well in school was not enough; I needed to become disciplined. I wrote down the work I needed to complete every day, and I wouldn’t get up from my desk until I completed my work. I was taking difficult classes that I never thought I could do well in when I registered. Exam season came and went with my continued study habits and organization. My jaw dropped when the final grades came out. My GPA had skyrocketed, and I felt so proud of myself and what I had accomplished. When I was emailed saying I had made the Dean’s List, I knew that I had finally turned my attitude around towards school. 

A screenshot of Taryn's email informing her that she earned a spot on the dean's list.

From my second year onward, my grades reflect how hard I work. I look forward to school every day and I look forward to learning as much as I can from each course I take. Finding the best study and organization methods for you can take time, but once you find the ones that work, it shows. Now when I speak to family, friends, professors, and employers, I am proud to disclose my GPA. Although my grades from my first year affect my overall GPA to this day, I don’t mind because I’m so proud of how far I’ve come and know my past self would be proud as well. I am now on the path to graduate with honors, and if I was asked about this in 2019, I would’ve never thought it was possible. 

Future Student Ambassador, Taryn – Bachelor of Business Administration. “A Student’s Story of Improving Grades” 8 Nov. 2022

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