Evernote is a valuable addition to college whether you’re an incoming freshman, experienced undergrad, or a graduate student pursuing a Master’s degree online. In this series, we’ll follow four students through a semester of college as they use Evernote for different tasks. We’ll explore their discoveries, victories, and their favorite tips as they bring Evernote with them from moving day to finals.
Today, we meet Evernote’s Fab Four and get their impressions as college begins.
It’s still summertime, but for first year college students, summer is always a little shorter than they remembered it. For Molly O’Donnell, an incoming freshman at the University of California at Irvine, this summer held more change than she anticipated. When she graduated from high school in June, she expected to be making her way across the country to Ithaca College in New York as a Theatre Studies major. “Despite their amazing theatre program, the school just didn’t fit who I am,” Molly explains. “I’m sure it’s perfect for others, but I felt unhappy and disconnected over my three-day visit. So I submitted an appeal to UCI, and after two long weeks, I was accepted into their drama program.”
Changing schools at the last minute added lots of stress and a few weeks to Molly’s summer. As her friends depart, one by one, for their respective universities, Molly is using the extra time to explore Evernote while she readies for her own journey. A natural leader, Molly thinks first of Evernote as a way to bringing other students together. “I think it will be a good way to start or maintain a study group,” she observes. “It’ll be good to help others if they’re confused about homework or a class.” Molly also anticipates using the audio recording feature in Evernote Premium to record long lectures, and keeping that file stored in Evernote right alongside her notes.
“Both of my parents are deaf, and American Sign Language is my first language,” Molly says. As an avid literature and Shakespeare enthusiast, I spend most of my time reading, writing, or running.” Her advice to others who have just been through the college application process? “Visit the campus before you commit!”
Vinson Luo returns to Purdue University in West Lafayette, Indiana, for his second year as a computer science major after a summer at his family home in Taiwan. Incoming sophomores have enough college experience to know their way around a college campus, but many find their projected career paths broadening as their world opens up to more possibilities their majors offer them. Vinson is no different. He approaches his return to Purdue with an eye toward a wider education. “This year, I’m just looking at simply learning,” Vinson says. “I want to broaden my horizons and acquire more skill sets that I’ll require for a future career.”
Another thing that sophomores like Vinson have learned after a year of college and a summer of reflection is the need to improve organizational skills. For that, Vinson is turning to Evernote. “Evernote is convenient for taking quick notes in class, highlighting and annotating PDFs of textbooks for study, and storing documents in an ordered, easily accessible manner,” he says. When he is dealing with thousands of lines of code, Vinson appreciates Evernote’s search functions the most. “It gives me quick and easy access, so creating, gathering, and organizing all my resources is convenient and efficient.” With so many hours of study and homework, it’s important to Vinson to be able to find and gather his materials quickly, and Evernote simplifies that process for him, giving him more time for his other passion: digital illustration.
“Although I’m majoring in computer programming,” Vinson explains, “I’m also interested in digital illustrations and animations, [and have been] since I was very young. I used to use various traditional materials and medium, but now I’m using digital illustration programs and modeling software to produce my work.”
By the time you’re a senior in college, you’ve got the college thing down pretty well. A Digital Communications major at Albright College in Reading, PA, Stephan Brown is no stranger to the world of online textbooks and organizing schoolwork to maximize learning. In fact, Stephan has been using Evernote since he started high school. “I mainly used it to study my Spanish,” he relates. “It was great to have all my vocabulary in one app.”
Now, Stephan knows he can use Evernote for more sophisticated studying. “I’ve learned about the capabilities of the document scanner,” he says. “I love that I can transfer all my paper documents and have it all organized within the app.” At Albright, many of Stephan’s textbooks are online, so he plans on using the annotation feature extensively and will create study guides that he can always have with him.
An energetic, involved college student, Stephan’s varied interests have taken him to 12 countries around the world. He also plays in a jazz ensemble in his spare time. “I enjoy bringing people together, and I love helping everyone as much as I can,” Stephan says. To that end, Stephan also made a documentary about college students’ travel experiences, and does a great deal of community service work, as well as working for a high-tech company in the summertime.
“This school year,” Stephan says, “I’m looking forward to creating unforgettable memories with my friends. This is my last year of school before the real world kicks in. I want to make the most of this year, because after it’s over, all of us will end up in different places.”
Incoming grad student Monica Bugaoan-Abakan already has a Bachelor of Science in Recreation, and she made the decision a few months ago to pursue a master’s degree in Public Administration. She enrolled in the online master’s program through Notre Dame de Namur University in Belmont, CA, so she can work on her degree while continuing to work for the City of Menlo Park, CA, in recreation. Her classes are sequential, rather than simultaneous, so she can focus on one class at a time. Still, a full-time job, a home, a husband, and a master’s program requires tremendous dedication and organization—that’s where Evernote comes in.
“Evernote is useful in all aspects of life, not just school,” Monica observes. “I could definitely use it to organize my life, and move toward a more sustainable way of keeping track of notes.”
With an online master’s program, Monica uses Evernote to take notes during lectures and reading assignments. Keeping checklists helps keep Monica’s busy life organized, and she’ll receive her master’s right on schedule, no matter what life (or school) throws her way.