Working on homework underneath the shady cover of trees at the Duck Pond was first-year student Emma Eckelmann, who agreed to let Daily Lobo readers in on what her school essentials are for a good semester.

Working classroom technology

Being in a classroom that has a working computer and projector is vital to Eckelmann, mainly because all of her professors utilize that technology.

“All of (my professors) rely on it; all of them use PowerPoint presentations or show videos, so it’s essential for their lectures,” Eckelmann said.

Not having working technology in the classroom disrupts the flow and rhythm of lectures while also taking away from the time students have to learn, according to Eckelmann. 

Good Wi-Fi connection

Eckelmann, who is an exchange student, finds that the Wi-Fi here on campus works great in comparison to her university back home in Germany. 

“I feel like (the Wi-Fi) works best in my dorm,” Eckelman said. “To be honest, I’ve only tried it in my dorm and around the Duck Pond, but it works really well in my dorm.”

Like most of us, she uses her computer and the internet for just about everything, so having reliable Wi-Fi is a must.

A quiet room

Eckelmann feels incredibly lucky to have a dorm room to herself. She was originally supposed to have a roommate but never ended up having one.

“Honestly I’m really happy about it; I’m not complaining at all,” Eckelmann said.

She finds that studying in her room works best because it’s the quietest. Sometimes even a library like Zimmerman is just too noisy to study efficiently.

Pen and paper

Although Eckelmann is heavily reliant on her computer, the classic pen-and-paper pair is the best for in-class note taking.

“I’m not a fast typer, so whenever I’m in a lecture I always write (notes) down,” Eckelmann said.

Sometimes she’ll type up her notes later, but the often fast-paced nature of lectures requires her to use the tried and true method of ink on paper.

Audible professors

If you can’t hear your professors, chances are you could be missing important information; this could be course material, due dates or both.

Even though masks make everyone sound a bit muffled and Eckelmann tends to sit in the back of classes, she acknowledges that professors are projecting and doing their best to be audible.

“I can see that they are trying and I can understand them well,” Eckelmann said.

With one week down and 15 to go this semester, making sure you have the best conditions possible will hopefully make this turbulent time go a little smoother.

Emma Trevino is the culture editor at the Daily Lobo. She can be contacted at or on Twitter @itsemmatr