Exam Week Support

Discussion in 'Publicly and Privately Funded Military Colleges' started by RahVaMil2009, Nov 29, 2011.

  1. RahVaMil2009

    RahVaMil2009 Member

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    It's almost that time of year: fall semester exam week. I thought it might be helpful to designate a thread for friends and family to share ideas on how they can support their cadets from afar. :smile:

    Just before exam week of fall semester of my rat year, my parents sent me a really nice gourmet fruit basket. It came in a box that was so large I couldn't see around it as I strained through barracks, so I took it to my Dyke's room (on the first stoop) to open it up. I was slightly disappointed that it was only a fruit basket that had been packed it a box a little over twice its size to allow for all the packing peanuts necessary to keep it intact, but it sure was fun straining back up to my room carrying a large fruit basket. :biggrin:
    Here are some other helpful items to include in exam week care packages:
    • Bubble Wrap. I asked my Mom to use bubble wrap instead of packing peanuts as often as possible. Nothin' beats squeezing the everlovin' crap out of bubble wrap when you'd rather punch some jerk in sallyport. :biggrin:
    • Silly Putty. Stress balls are also good, but I always preferred Silly Putty. I'd actually bring it into my exams with me and play with it in my left hand under the desk while writing with my right hand. It helped me work out some of the tension while allowing me to focus harder on the exam itself.
    • Healthy Stuff. It's okay to send cookies, but my parents were really wise to send me that fruit basket. They'll be craving all kinds of junk food, and it's totally fine to send them Rice Krispie treats and brownies, but sugar overload (and then the sugar crash that comes when the sugar buzz wears off) can really hurt their exam week efforts. Consider sending fruit (apples and clementines usually mail well), nuts and seeds (almonds, sunflower seeds, etc.), and other healthy alternatives.
    • The Funnies. If you get the Sunday newspaper, begin collecting the comics page(s) now and send them as many as you can. Anything to lighten the atmosphere of the room during exam week will be appreciated, and the stupid humor of the funnies will probably mean a lot more to them now than it did before.
    Finally, reassure them of your love and confidence. Don't be surprised if you send them an email (or two, or three, or seventeen) and don't hear back from them at all during exam week. The only time I remember talking to my parents during exam week (other than quick confirmations about furlough travel plans) was spring semester of my First Class year when I took Biology of Women and called home so my Mom (an LPN and mother of three) could quiz me. Don't think that an absence of response means they don't care about or need your encouragement--especially for the rats, fish, and knobs, who might be experiencing college exams for the first time ever.

    What are some other ideas for how you can support your cadets?

    Thanks,

    Jackie M. Briski
    VMI Class of 2009
    First Class PVT (Ret.)
     
  2. RahVaMil2009

    RahVaMil2009 Member

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    It's worth noting that most schools provide some venue of standard goody packages that can be purchased for exam week. At VMI, this is done through the X. My parents sent me stuff from the X more than once and it was usually pretty good.

    This year, the VMI Engineers Without Borders club is conducting a fundraiser with Krispie Kreme. Check out their Support Us page for more info on how you can have a Krispie Kreme exam package delivered to your cadet's room on Reading Day. All proceeds go to the Engineers Without Borders service trip to Bolivia, where they're helping an isolated village gain access to clean water by designing and building an irrigation system.

    -jmb-
     
  3. pennak

    pennak Member

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    Great idea! FYI: Their form on the link says that they will accept orders until Dec. 1, 2011, but I just called and they advised that they have extended the acceptance date to Dec. 6.
     
  4. larry2013

    larry2013 Member

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    My son's RAT year I sent a box- things they could eat at one serving with NO cooking needed - crackers, canned fruit - manderin oranges, peaches, canned or packed meat -chicken and tuna, beef jerky, oranges, power bars, dry mix drinks to add to water- during my son's crew years found special K power water we called it - mixes to add to water gave protien and vits/minerals- only few flavors - lemonaid was fav. Also did send cereal bars, nuts, dried fruit and bag of choc bars(small size) I also put in music greeting card - at least during my son's RAT year, they still couldnt have music regularly - so he said the card was a hit all around. I did send encouraging emails too - every couple of days to keep to finish line in sight threw the fog! am always trying to find new ideas - larrys mom
     
  5. easter2

    easter2 Member

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    Great ideas---can make up a neat goodie box that will be a surprise ;) Already ordered donuts from Engineers Without Borders too! My Rat always likes Mio (sp--the liquid stuff you put in water-liquid form vs powder tubes) also...
     

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