Spring Break: So What Are Your Plans?

Posted on Thursday, February 27th, 2014 by admin under athletics, Events, Student success, Student support, Students, Uncategorized. Tags: , ,

Student Perspective post by Matt Barrett
Graduate Assistant for Communications

 Does anyone else feel like the spring semester just started?  I can’t pinpoint it exactly, but time seems to fly during the school year.  It’s one of those strange phenomena, I guess.  One day our classes start, and the next we’re making plans for spring break.  I’ve noticed that in graduate school, professors tend to list every assignment on the first day, leaving us with a mountain of work that we somehow have to complete over the next four months.  In January, I made a calendar to outline all of the assignments that should be finished by spring break.  I was feeling pretty good about what I accomplished until I noticed that our break is only a week away.  So now that I have to read two novels and write three stories in just eight days, I might need to adjust my goals.

Truth be told, I’m very excited for spring break.  On Saturday March 8th, I’ll be flying from RDU to Boston, where I’ll spend the week with some college friends who I haven’t seen in months. Although there’s a fairly good chance I’ll have to survive yet another winter storm, I’m going to be in total relaxation mode and will even visit the New England beaches (while also wearing a hat and gloves).  My sister, who lives beside Fenway Park, will be in Boston when I’m there and drumroll…she’s turning twenty-one on St. Patrick’s Day.  I’ve noticed that Boston gets a little crazier than most places on this holiday, and even though I’d love to supervise the city-wide shenanigans, our classes start up that morning.  So while I won’t be there on her actual birthday, I’ll at least be able to give the “Please Be Responsible” pep talk just a couple days before.

As I researched UNCG spring break plans, I came across an awesome opportunity that the music department has been sponsoring since 2006.  From March 7th to 16th, undergraduates and graduates who are majoring in music can spend five nights in Vienna and three nights in Prague while touring some of the world’s most famous musical sites.  Dr. Nelson, a professor at UNCG, will lead the group on daily field trips—and the itinerary is extensive, from listening to world-class symphonies to exploring Mozart’s residence.  Graduate students who attend can even receive three credit hours for the trip.  So if you’re in the music program, this is how you should spend at least one of your spring breaks at UNCG.

In order to get a sense of how other grad students are spending their time-off, I took to the streets (aka the Graduate School building and my classes) and asked the increasingly creepy question: “So what are your plans for spring break?”  Prasamsa Sharma, a first year master’s candidate in Public Health, will be flying to Florida, where she’ll kick back on the Miami beaches.  And even though she has a lot of work, she told me, “I could really use a break”—and just like me, she plans on spending her time recharging.

Photo of Sumney sisters during raceShaina and Chelsea Sumney, on the other hand, will remain on campus for cross country practice.  The twins, who are both first years in Speech Pathology, will be competing on March 14th and 15th at the UNCW Seahawk Invitational.  Recently, they both placed second in their respective races at the Dennis Craddock Invitational, and while they won’t be able to relax 24/7 like me, they’re looking forward to working with their team.  Since they also competed for UNCG as undergraduates, this is their final year of collegiate eligibility.  So if you’re in the Wilmington area, make sure to cheer them on!

Just about every student I spoke to wants to spend at least part of their spring break “chillin.”  Brandon Haffner, for instance, will be heading to Austin, Texas for the South By Southwest music festival featuring some of today’s biggest artists.  Brandon, who is a first year candidate in Fiction, will get to set aside the seemingly endless pile of books (which I, too, have to read), at least for a couple of days.  It seems like that’s been the connecting strand in my interviews, the chance to reboot before entering the second half of the semester.  Whether or not you hope to do the same, I’d like to wish you the happiest of vacations.  Make sure to check back next week for another blog—if you don’t remember, my first blog of the semester was about needing to keep a better calendar, so if you’re confused why my spring break blog came more than a week before the actual event, it’s because I haven’t followed up with that plan.