My love/hate relationship with group projects

Dating all the way back to Elementary School, the concept of group projects had become familiar. Ever since that moment of the first triune formation, I HATED group projects with an intense passion.

Mainly for this simple fact: I am a dictator. Unashamedly.

I love both being a leader, and despise it all at once. I love the leadership role, and people thinking my idea’s are noteworthy; but I hate the responsibility that goes with shepherding the pack. And about 95% of the time, that responsibility falls on me. I don’t know what I do to attract it upon myself, but it just happens. No question. 

I’ve always been the good girl in school. Worked really hard for my grades, made more friends as teachers than students, and been super responsible. So when I am placed in a group that doesn’t like to work as hard, it bothers me. Mostly because my grades are in the hands of a perfect stranger.

One thing I’ve quickly come to realize, is that Cascadia uses an innovative process called Integrated Learning. This is a hands on approach which involves much group work.

At the beginning of my three years here, I really despised this process. I was not able to let go and surrender control. The fact that most of my teachers graded me individually really helped in being able to let go of that negative stigma.

The truth is, group projects are the closest thing related to working in teams in the corporate world. This is something one can never truly run away from. By learning how to work well now, I am building my future for success in my chosen field of marketing.

It is teaching me much patience, empathy, communication skills, critical thinking, problem solving, and how to work with varying personalities, all while having fun in the classroom.

I am thankful to go through this process. As brutal as it may be at times, it is teaching, shaping, and molding me into a better, more confident, successful person.

This photo was taken today in my communication class. We had 18 minutes to build a structure together as a team. There were bumps in the road, feelings hurt, and expressed, but with two minutes on the clock, our team surpassed 4 other teams in accomplishing the highest structure using spaghetti straws, string, a marshmallow and tape. Our structure was over 2 feet tall! This was a great team building activity, and showed us just how important working in teams really is to our futures.


-Mila Prokopenko, Marketing Intern 


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