The Gustavian Weekly

Gusties need longer summers for sanity | The Gustavian Weekly

By Lauren Casey - Opinion Writer | September 6, 2019 | Opinion

The end of summer brings back the ability to see friends again, start fall sports, have more independence and leave behind a terrible summer job or internship. But also, the end of summer brings back having to be prepared for challenging tests, hours of studying, endless papers to write, juggling activities, interviews for jobs, and pondering if our partner at the square dance really is our soul mate. Starting a new school year can be exciting, but also daunting to think about since college life can be mentally exhausting, which is why summer should be a tad bit longer.

Summer should be longer because being a student is not easy.

Having a little bit more of a break could be the factor that helps to ease anxiety and other mental health issues.

“School is honestly very stressful and anxiety inducing for me at times,” Sophomore Emma Larson said.

There is a reason why “student” is listed as an occupation; it truly is full time, but honestly, it is over time. Classes are already challenging enough, but being over involved Gusties, we make it even harder on ourselves by signing up for every random club under the sun, and then going and running for an officer position of those random clubs. Between classes, clubs, and homework, it can be hard to take care of ourselves. Because by the end of our days, we have no energy to do the tasks necessary to stay afloat and do it all over again the next day. This can’t be applied to everyone, but I am pretty sure this stressful paragraph can be applied to most students and staff. The school year to summer ratio is a bit off, and for all we do during the year, we could at least be spared another week or two.

For those who had internships, research, and summer jobs. Summer probably was about a week long instead of three months.

Summer break is deceiving because students continue to be full-time with the learning opportunities in which we participate. These experiences aren’t any less exhausting than the school year is, especially with 40 hour works weeks, difficult research, and terrible bosses that have you running around like a chicken with its head cut off.

“I wish we had more summer because I was working all summer and want some more free time,” Junior Emma Lohman said.

Think about what you were doing a week or two before move in day-preparing an end of summer presentation to present to the senior VPs, putting the final touch on your research write up or dealing with difficult customers. Once it is all said and done, the task of packing for college and moving in is waiting for you, leaving no room for summer and the word “relax” nowhere to be found. Having to go from one experience to the next leaves our brains no time to prepare for the next thing. One or two weeks longer would greatly improve our mental state coming into the new year.

The last reason that more summer would be great is simply because it is more time to spend doing our favorite things, and more time to be with friends and family. Yes, we are getting older, but sometimes three months with friends and family is not enough after spending a school year without them.

“I’d much rather have more time to be out and about traveling versus sitting in a classroom again,” Senior Paige Wormer said.

We all have our Gustie friends, but for those who have friends back home and go to schools our of state, summer is the time where we can finally see them again and try to make the most of it. More summer means more time for Twins games, lake days, bonfires, and time to do whatever your heart desires. If none of these apply to you, then more summer would maybe be just enough time to realize being at home is driving you crazy and you truly are ready to start school.

On the other hand, there are a lot of people who are content with three months of summer sun and are ready to be back in a routine again. There is something comforting about knowing how your week is going to go and staying busy. Having a schedule planned out for you instead of finding ways to stay entertained is a little thing we take for granted sometimes.

“I am ready to be back on campus because my CF job is the most rewarding thing I’ve been a part of so it’s nice being here with all the first years,” Junior Abbie Ranzau said.

To those of us that thrive with routine, me being one of them, knowing that school equals routine again can overpower the fact that everything we love to do during the summer is coming to an end just because we like the fact that our calendars are telling us what time to go eat dinner every day.

Summer can be hard sometimes because it means moving back into our parents’ house after being used to more independence all year. I don’t know about you, but moving back into my bright pink room with all my middle school and high school gymnastics medals and stuffed animals from when I was two, makes me feel like I am 12 rather than 21. Having the independence to make our own decisions at college and be responsible for ourselves, is what we are used to, and by the end of summer a lot of us are itching to go back.

I will say, being home for the summer is nice due to the fact that my mom does my laundry and makes awesome meals.

The end of summer is so bittersweet; we love to see all the familiar faces on campus again. But in the end we are here for academics, and that isn’t easy. While the school year can be so mentally draining, the Gustavus community helps to balance out the stress of being a student because we are all in the same boat, and there are so many resources to help make it easier on us. While I am supposed to pick a side on this topic, I feel as if I can’t because the benefits of being back on the campus overshadows the stress crying sessions in the shower, late nights in the library, and days where I “just can’t even.”

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