Making the most of your spring break

February 23, 2010

Use the week off to re-fuel, re-energize, and re-gain your life

Just when the semester gets really crazy with midterms, projects, and essays, students are granted a much-needed week of bliss. Just hearing the words “Spring Break” is enough to provoke a sigh of relief from any student, thankful that there’s a light at the end of the tunnel of textbooks (for a week, at least). Here are some ways to make the most of your Spring Break. Outdoor Adventures. What better way to spend Spring Break in Colorado than a backpacking or canoe trip? The Recreation Center Outdoor Program sponsors an eight-day trip backpacking through Canyonlands National Park for $375 and a five-day canoeing trip on the Colorado River for $300. Talk about a refreshing escape away from classrooms and studying! Volunteer. If you don’t have time to volunteer with classes in session, using Spring Break to give back is a great way to spend your time. There’s nothing more rewarding than giving your energy to a positive cause, and a week of doing it will definitely have you going back to school inspired and motivated. Check out the Volunteer Resource Center for opportunities and organizations.

“Spring Break is a great excuse to take a break from academics and get out to do something you've been putting off: climb a mountain, relax on the beach, or volunteer around the country.” – Russell Shearer, senior

Relax. Take this week to re-fuel for the rest of the semester by simply relaxing. Perhaps get a massage or take a yoga class. Enjoy the outdoors with a bike ride, walk, or hike around Chautauqua or the creek. Take time to hang out with friends. Catching up on sleep could also be an excellent use of time. Taking time to relax is a great way to re-energize your mind and body.

“I feel like Spring Break should be more about relaxing and taking care of yourself. College is such a crazy and hectic 'go-go-go' type of atmosphere, and Spring Break is the perfect time to get away, take a break, and come back feeling fresh and rejuvenated. That's what I'm doing at least!” – Tiffany Ahern, junior

Catch-up. Use this week to catch-up on schoolwork or errands you don’t have time for during classes. Getting a head start on assignments may sound lame now, but come finals time in May you’ll be glad you did. Or do little things like your laundry or cleaning your house. This would also be a great time to update your résumé or write cover letters for upcoming internships.

“Spring Break is always a good time of the year to reconnect with friends that might have gone off to a different school around the country. I usually travel back to San Francisco to revisit my friends I grew up with, the places I enjoyed the most while in middle school and high school, and spend some much needed time with my parents.” – Alison Mesinger, senior

Travel. Getting out of Boulder, Colorado or even the country is always a nice break from the monotonous school schedule. If you don’t already have a trip planned, think about picking up a cheap plane ticket with a few friends or taking a road trip somewhere. If you can’t spare the entire week (or the money), plan a day or two for a “staycation” somewhere in Colorado. Family time. Whether you’re from out of state or right up the street, take this week to visit your family. Home is one’s foundation, so reconnecting is a great way to de-stress and gain clarity. It’s understandable that home can be stressful as well, so plan your stay accordingly. Also, make sure to take advantage of the free washer and dryer, home cooking, and free utilities.

“This is my last year of college and I plan to visit friends for one weekend, but spend the rest of the time with my family. I feel like it’s important because I don't know where I will be next year and won’t get to see them as often.” – Vanessa Walker, senior

Safety first. If you are staying on campus, take into consideration that many students leave campus for the week, so keep safety in mind at all times. Always stick with a group, utilize CU NightRide, and be cautious of strangers. Just be smart, and trust your instincts. Now it might be tempting to throw all inhibitions to the wind and party every night of Spring Break, but think about it; that’s just going to leave you with a headache and other “pleasant” side effects that will leave you feeling worse, not better, as you head into the end of this semester. Have fun, but don’t be stupid about it. Basically, make the most of your Spring Break—whatever that means for you personally. Take the week as an opportunity to set yourself up for a smooth transition into finals; but more importantly, use it just to take care of yourself. —Maggie Schoonmaker, Junior, School of Journalism and Mass Communication