Married students juggle time

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    By Marc Buchanan

    When Doug Farr was single, the social scene in Provo would keep him out until the early morning hours. His schoolwork would get done at the last minute. Then Doug met Heather, fell in love and got married. Now he manages his time between school, work and his wife and was recently rewarded with his first 4.0 GPA at BYU.

    Nearly one-fourth of the day-time students at BYU are married and must balance between school, work and spending time with their spouse. While the new responsibilities may seem overwhelming, many students say it is easier to focus and get schoolwork done.

    ?There are fewer distractions and less social pressure, which makes homework a lot easier,? said Farr, a senior majoring in anthropology. ?When I was single it was hard to study at home because there was always something going on. Now I can come home and get my schoolwork done because it is quieter and more relaxed.?

    Heather agreed with her husband.

    ?It is a lot easier to concentrate on what needs to be done and have time to complete it,? Heather said. ?I get nostalgic for being single sometimes, but overall I feel like I have stepped up and am more responsible.?

    Having a clear future can help married students in school as well, said Cody Olsen, a senior majoring in statistics. Cody married Kim in April of 2004. Since then, Cody said he has felt a greater motivation to finish school.

    ?I feel more accountable, and that makes it easier to focus,? Olsen said. ?My future is easier to see, and that makes me want to do well.?

    Olsen said a key to maintaining a balance between studying and spending time with his wife is to leave schoolwork at school.

    ?I try to get my homework done by five, so I can go home and spend time with Kim,? Olsen said. ?That has helped us to have time together and not be trying to get more done then we have time for.?

    Marriage doesn?t guarantee more time for school, however. Jamie Chunat, a junior majoring in advertising said she feels it is harder to find time to study with the new responsibility of marriage.

    ?Since Glen and I have been married, homework has taken a back seat,? Chunat said. ?When I was single, roommates would share the load around the apartment. Now it is just the two of us, and there never seems to be enough time to get everything done.?

    Chunat had to cut back on the number of credit hours she has taken so she can play the roles of wife and student.

    ?It has been well worth it to take fewer credits this semester so I can not be as stressed and get things done at school, at my job and around the house,? Chunat said.

    When she has to choose between school and spending time with her husband, Chunat said being with her husband wins out.

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