Never would I have thought that I was going to be getting married in my first semester at Tufts. No, I don’t mean in a white dress and with something old, new, borrowed, and blue. Instead, I got married with late night text messages, surprise homework notifications and panicked study sessions at the Rez. I am not writing about a real marriage, instead I am reflecting on my academic nuptial relationships. Similar to Miranda Bailey and Richard Webber in Grey’s Anatomy, I realized that many of us at Tufts have work spouses that help keep us afloat in our demanding environments. Although, the atmosphere at Tufts is challenging, I have felt that this university provides group support that leads to individual success. I have found sturdy support in my academic career through my work husbands and wives. In my Spanish class, my work husband is the first person I ask about an assignment or material that I found confusing in class. I go to him for reassurance about reasonable essay lengths or difficulty of projects. And of course, my work husband is the first person I ask to review testing material and vocab words on the morning of an exam. Although there is no romantic chemistry between my work husband and me, I still rely on him as if we had been married for years!
In my computer science class, my professor emphasized the importance of teamwork and collaboration. This class is incredibly rigorous, but luckily my work spouses have kept me buoyant in times of consternation. At first, I was surprised that my computer science professor made such an effort to discuss the importance of academic partnerships. But soon enough, I learned the potential power that work spouses hold. As peers, we can help each other reduce stress by contributing new perspectives to bewildering questions and concepts. As we battle through the academic storm, work spouses help us tackle problems together so that we do not have to endure them alone.