5 Easy Steps to Graduate IMSA with a 5.0

It’s one of the most commonly asked questions: “How do I survive IMSA with good grades?”

After extensive research and interviews, I have compiled a quick and easy tutorial on how to graduate IMSA with an esteemed 5.0. Read carefully, dear student, because if you follow these steps, you, too, can end your IMSA career basically nonexistent, just like your GPA!

Step 1: Throw yourself into a peer-pressured relationship.

Alright, this one is mainly for the sophomores, but yes, one of the best pieces of advice is to get yourself a significant other! (Extra bonus points added if it’s during Sophomore Rush, when you’re surrounded by other naive and overly-hyped peers who “hardcore ship” you with your Homecoming date). After all, you ONLY have schoolwork, clubs, sports, and a social life to balance, so adding a girlfriend or boyfriend to the mix is just a piece of cake, right? Dedicating an hour or two a day for a relationship (that just so happened to be the result of friends pushing the two of you together and announcing the end of your “single” status) should be no problem for Illinois’ best and brightest.

Step 2: Procrastinate on everything.

Due tomorrow? More like DO tomorrow! Procrastination is one of the first life skills that all IMSA students learn during sophomore year, but being a professional procrastinator is a completely different story. Finishing an assignment the day before it’s due? You’re better than that! Spend that day doing everything and anything BUT what you’re supposed to be doing, and spend the night (and all your free mods the next morning) in a procrastination-induced panic! A true procrastinator will find all the excuses they can to avoid their responsibilities, even if it means doing laundry, cleaning their dorm, or baking cookies. Instant gratification for the win!

Step 3: Don’t do your homework.

It’s common knowledge that most teachers don’t actually check homework completion until the end of the unit, so homework is completely optional! It doesn’t matter if you don’t practice the concepts you learned because hey: if it kinda made sense in class, it’ll still make perfect sense five hours later, right? Plus, you could totally use the time you save from not doing homework towards procrastinating (refer to Step 2) and do other much more important things such as…y’know, stare off into space for two hours, or walk your pet fish.

Step 4: Live off of ramen and instant mac n’ cheese.

We all know that the 3-minute walk to Sodexo for dinner is just not worth it, especially if you’re busy procrastinating, doing homework, or studying for tests. Walking…all the way across Yare? Into the main building? And then into Sodexo? Who in their right minds would ever do such a thing to themselves, just for the sake of food? Ramen and instant mac n’ cheese are the only things you’ll need to survive! Saturated with calories? Check. Insane amounts of sodium, just like how salty you’re feeling right now? Check!  Water (to make it healthy)? Check. Who needs vegetables or protein when you can just pop a cup into the microwave and finish a meal in less time than it takes to get to Sodexo?

*Disclaimer: As all IMSA students know, water is not a necessity of life, especially when the majority of students are camels who can go over 10 hours without drinking water. However, for the sake of not causing the fire alarm to start ringing at 3:00 am, please add the appropriate amount of water into your instant ramen or mac n’ cheese. Your hall-mates will thank you/not shoot death glares at you when they’re all huddled outside, awaiting the all-clear signal.

Step 5: DON’T SLEEP!

That’s right, you heard me. Teachers and RCs continuously advertise the benefits of sleep (that’s why we have internet shut-off and lights-out), but c’mon, how important is sleep really? Is seven hours of essentially being dead really worth it? Think about all hours you could use to binge Netflix or do all the work that you didn’t do! Sure, you’ll spend the next day looking and feeling like a zombie — but everyone is basically a zombie already — so you might as well blend in with the crowd.

About the Author

Eva Liu is a stressed (but somehow still surviving) junior, and proud wing guide of 02A. She comes from the snowy barren land of Canadian geese, also known as Waterloo, Canada, but if you ask her, she'll just say she's from Naperville. In her free time, she enjoys baking, reading, and playing piano.

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