Short breaks from school don’t serve their purposes | The Triangle

Short breaks from school don’t serve their purposes

Photograph courtesy of Kerrie Brailsford at Wikimedia Commons

The week-long breaks that Drexel gives its students between quarters just aren’t long enough. The fact that breaks are only a week long was something that I never really cared about all that much during my freshman year at Drexel, but that was mainly because of summer break.

Now that I’m a sophomore, I no longer have summer break to look forward to and this has made me more and more conscious of the breaks that Drexel gives its students. The break between fall and winter quarter is perfect. Three weeks off isn’t too short like the one-week breaks between winter and spring quarters, and the spring and summer quarters. Even the two-week break from summer quarter to fall quarter is a good one.

It’s mainly the one-week breaks that can make life difficult for students and faculty alike. During the last quarter, I had all my final exams and projects and co-op interviews in finals week. And to add to that I had to attend my brother’s graduation ceremony. By the end of that week, I was drained of any motivation to be productive and I ended up spending my week off playing video games and catching up on as much sleep as possible. But before I knew it, I was back on campus and in Barnes & Noble getting my books for the new quarter.

It was at this moment that I came to terms with the fact that I wasn’t quite ready to hop into another 10 weeks of classes. In my mind, the purpose of the breaks is to give everyone a chance to reset their brain for the next term, but that’s a bit difficult to do with only seven days. There have been times where I’ve heard professors talking about how they also disliked week-long breaks. I recall one of my professors not having a syllabus ready for the first day of class. He said that the reason for this was because he was busy doing final grades for classes during the break week and didn’t have enough time to make his new syllabus.

Prior to this instance, I hadn’t even considered how the short break is also sometimes not enough time for the professors. At this point, I think everyone would benefit from having the one-week breaks extended to at least two weeks. While I’m not entirely sure about the feasibility of making the breaks longer, it would certainly benefit both students and professors alike. It would also make the fast-paced quarter system a bit more tolerable for those who find it overwhelming at times.

One could argue that students at Drexel do essentially get a six-month break while on co-op, as most students at colleges with regular summer breaks do work at jobs in the summer. However, I still think that extending the shorter breaks between quarters would go a long way in making the transition from quarter to quarter smoother for everyone and it’s something that Drexel should look into doing.