In high school I had the nasty habit of leaving all my long-term assignments to the last possible minute. My work was pretty manageable; I could get away with procrastination and receive the grades I desired. I figured that my habit would naturally dissipate as my academic environment grew more rigorous. Surely, the positive influence of my responsible Princeton-peers would rub off on me and I too could be the diligent student I wished to be. I could not have been more mistaken.
The propensity to push assignments off is more ubiquitous here then at my high school (granted that my observations of students is from a sampling that constitutes but a fraction of the Princeton community). Just about everyone here seems to suffer from the same last-minute oriented disposition. The students of Princeton University seem to exhibit a very special blend of lethargy, ADD (often Internet induced), busy over-booked schedules and the proven ability to ultimately “pull it off.” I have spoken with students from every grade here and the overwhelming ethos seems to be that work is meant to be done as close to the deadline as is manageable. In the elegant and truthful words of my friend Lucas Baradello: “what is left to the last minute, will only take a minute.” Perhaps I should be disappointed that it may be too late to change. But then again, I suppose it is not wise to fix that which is not broken.