Kids around me seem to be talking about this more and more. It’s been a long time since I’ve had a spring break, but since I’m in grad school I’m hearing about everyday. Looking back at my undergrad days, I’ve come to realize that there are three things to do over spring break in college. For you college kids, whether you’ve already made plans or still contemplating what to do, here’s my take on the ways to enjoy spring break.
1. Traditional – This where college kids opt for a week of partying in Florida, Cabo San Lucas, Galveston, etc. For obvious reasons, it’s the most popular (I’ve gone this route a few times) and people seem to drop their jaws if you tell them you’re not opting for it over the break. But it’s not bad if you choose not to party over that week.
The Goods: You can let loose, meet lots of people and have one your most memorable moments in college. You might even meet your new “lovie”!
The Bads: It can leave your wallet a little light, and if you’re on financial aid or money is just too tight, this option might not be for you. It’s also not a good idea if you have a big assignment due right after, because you will not get any work done. Believe me, I’ve tried!
2. Alternative Break – My school is big on this. It’s where you spend a week doing community service as far away as Africa, or locally. You might spend a week helping out a community that is still recovering from Hurricane Katrina.
The Goods: Looks great on a resume, you’ll meet new friends, and you’ll giving back to the community, which fulfills the old “better to give than to receive.”
The Bads: This isn’t a vacation. You will be on a schedule the whole trip with very little free time. If you’re craving a break from having to be somewhere at a particular time, you may want to avoid this kind of trip.
3. Staying Home – Often referred to as “the last thing I wanna do”, and the least popular option. It’s where you sacrifice your spring break to get caught up on school work. If you’re taking 18 credit hours or more, this may be the only time that you can finally get your head above water. If you’re going to school away from home, here’s your chance to play tourist and explore your town or city (since you haven’t had the time prior).
The Goods: Get ahead on work, save some money, finish that project that’s due right after break – basically do whatever you need to do to save your GPA!
The Bads: Giving up spring break, and moping as you think about your friends having a blast somewhere hot and fun. Checking Facebook, Instagram, etc will be painful. At least you’ll be ahead of them academically, right?
There is no “right” option for spring break. It all depends on your financial situation, and what gets your engine going. I’m opting for staying home this break, as I have to work. You should, however, try all three options during the course of your college career. All three are rewarding, and will help you academically, professionally and socially. Whatever you’re doing this spring break, stay safe and enjoy every moment!