No Rest for the Weary


After two weeks of camping out in my apartment, studying for hours on end for finals, the last place I want to spend my intersession is at home. During finals’ weeks (yes, plural because it is more than a week) I spend my days, and occasionally even part of my nights, at my main base camp — our dining table— where I have the space to spread out stacks of textbooks, notebooks, notecards, handouts, empty water bottles, calculators, pencils, and even an extra table lamp to help me stay awake. Outside of meal breaks, sleeping, and the couple of hours spent each day at school taking the actual exams, I can be found inside my dining room. Based on a loose calculation, over the course of nine days, for a total of approximately two hundred hours, I am homebound with little else than numbers, formulas, and facts permeating my thoughts.

A break is no doubt needed after this nine day marathon. And we finally reached the finish line, we were greeted with a single day off from school followed by the weekend. This minimal recovery period was not enough to rejuvenate from such a challenging fortnight. During these few days of reprieve, I desperately need to be out of my house and have a change in scenery since I had been locked up for such a long period of time.

Going away for intersession is a rainbow after the storm and clearly a treat that most students do not indulge in. Thoughts of an undiscovered destination or a shared experience, is something to look forward to as you push your way through your exams. Everyone has just been in the same situation for two weeks,focusing only on schoolwork and sidelining all the rest. Changing one’s surroundings, even just for a couple of nights, provides excitement and can help avoid the post-finals hole of suddenly having no work and spending the 48+ hour break period on Netflix. An alternative could be to offer a winter retreat for students to a local ski area complete with numerous outdoor options. This would allow students a chance to escape their study caves and be together in a relaxed setting without the added costs of air travel.

Whether spent at home or enjoying time away with friends, a twenty-four recovery period is not enough to give students a chance to both indulge in activities together from movies and restaurants or excursions, and also to catch up on sleep. Especially now that the extended President’s Break has been cut for next year, which was the reason the second day of inter-session was originally taken away last year, another day off could help ensure time for the best possible break between semesters.