Monday, June 24, 2013

A Better Me

I went to class not knowing what to expect today. I figured that whatever we’d be learning, I’d learn quickly because I tend to learn fast in school. After the first day of class, I realized I wasn’t as fast a learner as I thought I was. When Reneta and Mark (our instructors who prefer to be called by their first names) asked the class to name a few well-known brands of hotels, I knew a few. There was Marriott, Hyatt, Hilton, Four Seasons, and a few others. However, once my peers started naming other hotel chains like IHG, Wyndham Hotel Group, Choice, and others, I was lost and confused. How could I not have known about these supposedly “well-known” brands? It turns out that I have to work extra harder than the others to make sure I know the material. Most of my peers have already had hotel experience from internships or from the family business. I couldn't let that phase me.

I also thought I was an expert at Math. In all my math classes, I’m always the go to person for help. Today, I found myself asking others for help with the calculations because I didn’t understand some of the vocabulary or I couldn’t catch up when Reneta explained a few problems concerning Occupancy, Average Daily Rate (ADR), and Revenue Per Available Room (RevPAR). Just because I’m considered one of the smart people in high school doesn’t mean I’m one of the smart people in the world. Tonight, I’m going to be studying the material more to make sure I’m not confused anymore.

At first, I dreaded such a long day in class. We Hotelies have class from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM with a few breaks and an hour of lunch. Then we have required office hours from 4 PM to 6 PM. By 6 PM however, I liked having the office hours. It ensured that everyone had time to do all, if not most, of their homework. Because I was confused, I was working slower than most people and only got 3 out of the 4 assignments done. If it weren’t for office hours, I would have procrastinated and not done my homework until late at night. The availability of instructors and TAs was very convenient as well. I think office hours in high school would be a great idea. Some schools have Study Hall for students to do homework at school instead of at home. This saves time for students and more homework would be done. In Study Hall, students would focus on homework and not on distractions like television or internet at home. Computers would be available in Study Hall, but social media sites and distracting sites could be blocked. More students would do homework and they wouldn’t be so tired during school hours since the homework would be done at an earlier time. Teachers would be able to help students with questions and students would go into class more prepared because they weren't confused from the homework. Although students would be staying at school longer, I think it’s worth it because all the work is out of the way and there would be more free time or rest. Also, grades would improve.
A few of the long and difficult calculations I did during office hours today
We took a Behavioral Style Test today and I’m an Analyzer-Sympathizer. I like working in peaceful environments and I tend to avoid confrontation. I also think carefully when I make decisions. Sometimes I think too carefully and I end up not making a decision. We took these tests so Reneta and Mark would be able to form better groups for group projects. It’s very important to work well with others. I liked being grouped with people who I would be able to help and people who would help me. In high school, I’d usually end up working with people who aren’t as motivated as I am and I’d be doing all the work. With specially picked groups, there are fewer conflicts. Maybe teachers at my school would adopt this way of grouping students together in the future in order to promote a better learning environment.

As it turns out, I learned a lot about myself today. Even if I’m at the top of my class, I could be at the bottom of the class at another school. I can’t just measure myself up to the standards of one place. I need to work harder because I know now that I’m far from being one of the best and the brightest. It was a bit of a shock to realize this, but it’s better I know now than later because I have more time to find a solution. I also work better without distractions and in a peaceful environment. When there are disruptions, I tend to not do as well. I’m glad this program is helping to make me a better person.

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