You might be a SCAD student if…if a kid biking down the street in full cosplay seems normal; if you’re a sound designer who can draw in flawless one-point perspective (if you’re a sound designer and you know what one-point perspective is); if you puff yourself up to full Gerard Butler swagger before fighting your way onto the red line. We can all spot fellow SCADites from miles away, so I’ve decided it’s time to turn the mirror inward. Welcome to (Cult)ure, a weekly column dissecting the ins-and-outs that make us SCAD kids SCAD kids. It’s a laugh-so-you-don’t-cry sort of thing.

On the whole, SCAD students have an incredible work ethic. It’s undeniable; you have to work hard to succeed under the SCAD workload, it’s part of what prepares us for competitive careers in the arts.

But we’ve taken that sense of competition too far. Student culture has reached a point where we must constantly one-up each other’s busy-ness.

If my friend works and goes to school, then I surely must have to have two jobs on top of my classes. The next person in line works two jobs, takes classes, and freelances in her field. You get the point – we can do this all day. Whether it’s true or elaborated for dramatic effect, it seems like every conversation that starts with, “Hey, how are you,” eventually ends up down this road.

We all have to maintain our portfolios and websites, build up our resumes and attend classes. Add a sport or hobby and friendships, and we’re all busy, all the time. We get it.

If our go-to response to, “Hey, how are are you?” isn’t “busy” or “stressed,” it’s “tired.”

Most of us are already neck-deep in final projects, so we’re busy, stressed and tired. The era of the all-nighter has come. Even if you haven’t been pulling all-nighters throughout the quarter, you’re almost guaranteed to need at least one full night of work to wrap up the year. If not, well, we’re all going to be bowing down to you one day, even if we resent you for your organizational skills now.

When it comes to all-nighters – and finals in general – all I have to say is this: get it done. You’ve come this far, so you have no choice. Don’t relish it. Don’t calculate how few hours of sleep you’ve snagged in the past 72 hours so you can recite the numbers to all of your friends (that’s more work, after all). Just buckle down, drink plenty of water and get it done.

Written by Shelby Loebker.