This is a list of 6 helpful tips that, if I had cared more about them earlier, would have saved me from a lot of stress. As a Senior, I wish I had taken this advice much seriously much sooner. (Disclaimer: All of these are from my life. If they describe you it is merely coincidence)

1. Check and respond to your Cairn email. I’ve missed numerous deadlines (payments, book return dates, etc.)  because I either neglected to read my email or just chose not to care, expecting that things would go my way. Entitlement is not an appropriate Christian attitude.
Lesson Learned: Freshman Year

2. Take responsibility. I don’t know about you, but I have weaseled my way out of lots of problems, even at a Biblical university. I like to blame the cosmic forces that are (so, God I guess) for every problem that comes my way. “I’m sorry,” is a much better response than, “I can’t pay that $500 fine for this overdue book because I’m busy and never check my school email.”
Lesson Learned: Sophomore Year

3. Work now, play later. Prioritizing your life as a student means that assignments come first. If for some reason they can’t, then you need to re-prioritize so they can. Completing work on-time and completing work well can be an act of worship with the right motivation. Do all things to the glory of God.
Lesson Learned: Junior Year

4. Print assignments early. A lot of folks like to print out papers 10 minutes before their class starts. Waiting in line at the printer can be super frustrating especially if the printer malfunctions (which can happen), and puts you in a poor mood for class.
Lesson Learned: Sophomore Year

5. Accept help with grace. Cairn faculty, staff, and student workers are not out to get you. We want to help because we in fact do know that life is tough, stressful, and out-of-control at times. If you let go of pride and accept help (or let go of pride that things could ever dare go wrong for you) then we can help you more effectively.
Lesson Learned: Junior Year

6. Trust Jesus. Ultimately, a failing grade does not have eternal weight. It may bring shame or disappointment, but your righteousness and approval before God is found solely in Christ. If you truly grasp that, you have the power to go before a professor and admit your mistakes (not hiding them because you fear punishment) and even ask for help. Repentance plays just as important role in human relationships as it does with God and will prevent a lot of problems from getting as bad as you might let them. 
Lesson Re-learned: Every Year

~Ben Overbey

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