Second Time Around: Sophomore Slump?


“She doesn’t even go here!” Here you’ll learn more about the life of a transfer to Brown University. I’m Wenbo Bai, a first semester sophomore fall transfer, and this is my Second Time Around.

It’s here, and it’s everywhere–the sophomore slump. We thought we’d be able to avoid it like how I’ve been lucky enough to avoid the flu these past few flu seasons (knock on wood!), but it’s here, and we can’t do anything but to embrace it. The sophomore slump–or my experience of it, anyway–describes a rut in which the symptoms include glazed-over eyes, a decrease in the number of hours slept per night, and an increase in entropy of the cleanliness of my room.

I’m blaming the etiology of this disease on my past two weekends (don’t worry–the following is all SFW). Last weekend, I flew back home to Las Vegas, NV. This was the first time I had been back home since school started this semester, and I was also able to wear flip flops in the balmy west coast weather. Amazing? Yes. Conducive to studying? Not as much, especially when I arrived back on campus an hour before six hours of classes. This weekend, a friend of mine visited campus, and I spent my time on Saturday seeing her (we got cupcakes from Duck & Bunny, a popular restaurant that I am sure 99.9% of the student population has visited) and my China Care Playgroup session (in which we made chrysanthemum flowers out of tissue paper). And because I came from a school where sports were a mere whisper on campus, I went to a bit of the Brown’s basketball team home opening game. So, all of these activities have cumulated into me starting my homework for the week at 7 PM on a Sunday at the Rock (John D. Rockefeller Library), not to mention the number of notebooks strewn about my room.

Well, maybe it’s inappropriate to call it a slump. As someone who has almost always exclusively focused on academics, I’m beginning to understand there’s much more to college than studying and stressing over homework and tests. Getting to see family and friends and attending more events and activities around campus has redefined “college life,” especially in comparison to last year. Also, being in a completely different new environment is relatively rejuvenating. Even though I might have gotten a fewer hours less sleep these past two week, it definitely has been worth it. I think I’ll change my diagnosis from “sophomore slump” to “sleep deprivation.”

Thanks for reading! Should you have any questions or concerns, feel free to contact me at, or leave a comment below!


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