On Senior Spring Classes

February 7, 2024
Hadley Kim

As an AB senior, you are required to enroll in at least six classes and a minimum of two classes per semester. This means you can either take four classes in the fall and two in the spring, or three classes each. I took three classes my senior fall, so I now have to take three classes in the spring on top of my thesis. 

The general expectation is that your spring semester classes are an opportunity to take fun classes you never had time to fit into your schedule, or to finish up last minute distribution or major requirements. I have friends enrolled in breakdancing classes who have never danced before and others who are using the last semester to fulfill all of the remaining requirements for a minor they decided they wanted to pursue their junior year. 

For me, I have found that it is a mixture of both. As a result of studying abroad in the spring of my junior year, I still had to fulfill a language requirement for my major, East Asian Studies, which is why one of the classes I am taking is KOR 407: Readings in Modern Korea II. I also wanted to make sure that I took the opportunity to take classes I wouldn’t be able to take once I left Princeton, which led to my songwriting class ATL 496: How to Write a Song. In that class, the professor assigned us random songwriting groups every week, and we all have to come up with a 2-3 minute song. I, along with half of the class, have no songwriting experience, but the class is becoming a safe space for me to experiment and try new things.  

Finally, I wanted to finish my last semester at Princeton by taking a final class within my department. I had not taken an East Asian Studies class since my junior fall, and had never had the opportunity to take a class on Korea specifically. Therefore, I settled on my final class: HUM 234: East Asian Humanities II. The class splits readings each week between Korean and Chinese authors, with guest lecturers covering readings on Japan. 

Thus far, I feel that I have found a perfect blend of a fun and academically fulfilling semester, where I can spend a couple of hours a week writing a song with my peers and then immediately pivot to reading novels from my home country. 

Though there may be pressure at Princeton—whether the pressure is to be having fun senior year or to be constantly doing academic work—I feel like I have found the perfect balance, and am excited to finish my Princeton career strong.