Home Education Options Feeling the Heat? How to Stay Motivated in the Online Learning Environment This Summer
Feeling the Heat? How to Stay Motivated in the Online Learning Environment This Summer

Feeling the Heat? How to Stay Motivated in the Online Learning Environment This Summer

Start a degree program at American Public University.

By Megan Hines
Senior Social Media Coordinator, APUS

As an American Military University (AMU) or American Public University (APU) student, have you found yourself struggling to stay motivated this summer?

Finding a balance between your professional, personal and academic lives is never easy. With the additional activities that summer brings, focusing on your academic goals becomes even more challenging.

The good news: You are not alone! We recently asked members of our social media communities to share tips for staying motivated during the summer. We hope that their answers will inspire you to stay on the path to academic success.

Of the more than 500 responses we received, the most popular ways our students stay motivated are by planning ahead, leaning on others for support and remembering the ultimate goal.

Planning Ahead

“I am currently in my last semester at AMU and dealing with classes during the summer and a little bit of senioritis has been difficult. I have tried to get my homework done early in the week. That way, I have more time during the weekend to get outside and enjoy the weather. Proper time management is what has gotten me this far and hopefully that will continue over these last four weeks!” – Samantha Frazier, AMU

“To stay focused during the summer, I often plan out my schedule for work, school and personal time. This allows me to get work done, study for my summer classes and still enjoy summer. The worst thing I can do is tire myself out when I do not need to, so taking the time to plan out your summer can help quite a bit.” – Brandon Smith, APU

“To stay motivated throughout the summer, I make sure to focus on my short-term and long- term goals. Short-term goals include finishing my bachelor’s in the next year. Long-term goals include finishing law school in 2022. One thing that helps me to not go crazy while I’m both working and going to school full time is making sure to take time for myself, my boyfriend and my family. Spending time with those I love most and making time for myself is what keeps me refreshed and able to accomplish my goals.” – Alyssa Daley, AMU

“Create micro-goals! You know where you want to be in the big picture, so keep yourself motivated through the summer stretch by creating smaller goals and landmarks along the way. Not only are these goals more gratifying in the short term, you get the satisfaction and encouragement of completing them. Every project is about mapping out a path to success, and summer motivation is no different. Now, go and rock it!” – Sara Shipley, APU

Look for Support and Motivation from Others

“I stay motivated through the interactions with my classmates during our weekly discussions on forum posts. My fellow classmates interest me with their perspectives and encourage me with their enthusiasm. I look forward to our “conversations” each week and consider them great motivation in my challenging graduate studies.” – Deborah Cruz, APU

“What keeps me motivated in the summer is my son. He sits and does his summer workbooks while I do my classwork. Being an example for him is my motivation. There are times when neither of us wants to do our schoolwork and I tell him that ‘it is okay; let’s go do something else and then come back and hit the books.’ We are always able to get our work done, and then we reward ourselves with something simple like renting a movie on Amazon and eating some popcorn.” – Ryan Cellarius, AMU

“I stay motivated by looking at photos of those who have already graduated and reading their stories on Instagram. For instance, I’ll put in a graduation hashtag like #Graduates and tons of photos come up. It can be truly inspiring to read about others’ struggles and success stories. The other thing that keeps me motivated is my children. I want to lead by example and show that knowledge is power!” – Candace Roberts, APU

“The way I stay motivated is by going to the AMU Facebook page and seeing that everyone has the same struggles, questions and motivation. We all seek them out at different times. Reading the comments and seeing those that receive their degrees in the mail keeps me motivated. You see their sacrifice, their long hours, their time from family and the hard work put in. How can a person not be motivated and say, ‘That will be me; they started at the beginning too!’” – Kevin Pendleton, AMU

Remember Why You Started and Your Ultimate Goal

I continue to stay motivated by looking at the end goal that I want to achieve. I hope to create a new life for my family by continuing my education and becoming an officer in the USAF. I have only a few years left to complete all prerequisites for NECP. I need to stay motivated and continue school with minimal breaks to give myself the best chance to chase my dreams!” – Derek Havens, AMU

“I stay motivated during the summer by always remembering what it is I am working towards. I also remind myself that if I get my coursework done early in the week, I have plenty of time for summer activities.” – Dennis Ferguson, APU

“I personally love knowing that the degree I earn will help better myself and my family. Right before I start any studying or schoolwork, I either talk to my daughter or look at photos of her, just to remind myself that I am not going through school just for me. Family is important to me and being a father, I want to prove to my child that attaining certain goals can be difficult but most can be earned.” – Sony Flibert, AMU

“I stay motivated in school during summer by focusing on my career path. I tell myself that once I accomplish my career, then I can enjoy all upcoming summers without any further stress of incomplete education. I need to utilize my time in a way that it can pay me back with happiness and success. Furthermore, I also check my transcripts, the completed classes and the remaining classes to motivate myself to keep registering for classes until I see the “Almost Graduated!” statue.” – Sadeka Behlim, APU

We hope that these tips from fellow classmates help you as you’re working toward academic success. Do you have tips for staying motivated? Share with us in the comments below.



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At American Public University, students are priority one. We are committed to providing quality education, superior student resources, and affordable tuition. In fact, while post-secondary tuition has risen sharply nationwide, the university continues to offer affordable tuition without sacrificing academic quality.

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