I am graduating. It’s crazy. The beginning of the year, I honestly panicked. New Paltz has been home for the past four years. It feels like more including all of the summers and winter breaks I traveled back early for orientation or RA Training.
There comes a point in every senior’s year, where they reach the “does it really matter?” question. Commonly and fondly referred to as #senioritis. Luckily, (I don’t know If I’d say luckily is the right word…) but I’ve had my senior thesis with the honor’s program to help me keep pushing through. My thesis DOES matter to me. It’s something I want to be proud of. :) I’ve mentioned it here and there, at quick little moments in this blog, but I decided to share more with you all. Disclaimer: I still consider it a “work in progress” I feel like this is a project I will be continuing for some time now.
What I wanted to do: Bridge my love of photography and the experiences both inside and outside of the classroom.
What I did: I interviewed and photographed three students of different campus involvement levels at two contrasting pressure points of the semester. Week 1 was during midterms, when stress is sky high. Week two was directly after spring break, when everyone is still calmly running around the quad barefoot.
How: I picked three girls, 1- minimally involved, 2- Actively involved, 3- Overly involved, on campus with work or extracurricular activities, and interviewed them in an environment of their choice. (Most went with their residence hall rooms)
I then asked them a series of questions about how they prioritize balance their personal, academic, self-care (mental & physical), and academic responsibilities.
I photographed all of their responses, in hopes to visually compare how their answers changed and how the stress of the semester may have physically took a tole on their bodies and their environment.
My 6 interviews acquired over 400 photos. (WHICH WAS A LOT TO SORT THROUGH. I was not the happiest of campers when trying to balance working on this project, along with my other classes, and role as an RA)
I am hesitant to share my research findings as concrete data, considering my sample size was only 3 students (vrs 100-200 participants) but I still think my thesis and the student’s answers are valuable hello areas for future research!
Here is a sneak preview: I have so many more and am working on uploading them to some sort of blog as a final product.
I hope you enjoyed a taste of my thesis! Have a great week!
<3 Marissa Lynn