Eat better. Drink less. Hit the gym. Study more. Sound familiar?

By ringing in the New Year, you or someone you know likely made one or more of these resolutions. And in the solitude of Winter break, there are few distractions to keep one from straying far from these goals.

But after the long break, the long awaited first week of spring semester comes like a light at the end of the tunnel: Syllabus week.

Syllabus Week Celebrations

“You could say syllabus week is like a black hole that sucks up your morals, dignity and good health,” said Conor Foley ’13. “You drink as if it is going out of style and pay little attention to anything else but having fun with your long lost friends.”

With all the hype of being reunited with friends and being out of the watchful eye of parents, the first week back at Fairfield has a connotation for being one of the least academic.

And unfortunately, in the free spirit that accompanies syllabus week, resolutions such as better grades and a healthier lifestyle almost always get put on the back burner.

Skipping Out

One sophomore male on academic probation reported that his resolution was to get better grades. He also reported that even so, his focus on his classes might dwindle during the first week of school.

“Syllabus week is a joke in the classroom,” he said. “You’re going out every night and probably not going to class.”

Dr. James Simon, chair of the English department disagrees.

“Many professors have a limit on number of cuts, and week one usually counts, so that compels [our] attention,” he said. “Most professors take it very seriously as an opportunity to set a tone for the course, a level of expectations.”

Keeping Resolutions

“My resolution is to go to the gym five says a week,” said Maggie McCuen, ’13. “But it’s going to be so easy to break at school because it’s cold walking from Bellarmine, and I have a fear of missing out on everything.”

The good news? If you happen to break your resolution during the hustle and bustle of the first week back, you aren’t alone.

“75 per cent of those who make New Year’s resolutions are sticking to them after one week,” said a recent article in The New York Times.  “But this drops to 40-46 per cent after six months.”

If do you skip that class Thursday morning, order Domino’s at 2a.m., or leave your running shoes in the back of your closet for a couple of extra days, don’t panic.

It’s the thought that counts, says The Times. “Those who make resolutions are still more likely to change their behavior than those who want to change but do not make a new year’s pact at all.”

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