College Students need Spring Break

With the pent-up stress from school, students need an outlet to let loose and let live


Katie DelVerne, Cal Times Opinion Editor

The past three years of college, I spent Spring Break catching up on homework, crafting for my sorority, and going on internship interviews. Never have I traveled out of state or out of Pittsburgh, or have I done anything remotely exhilarating during this week some college students count down until. Though it is always refreshing to have seven days free from the stress of classes, I still have always craved an adventure. I watch my friends having the time of their life on social media as I sit on my couch watching the Food Network with my dog. If this sounds boring to you, you now understand why I made it my personal goal to book and secure an awesome Spring Break trip. After all, it is my senior year.
After much deliberation with friends, we decided on Las Vegas. The lights, the sights, the glitz, the glamor, it seemed like the perfect option. However, as a Spring Break amateur, I really have no idea what to expect.
Spring Break has a rather negative connotation associated with it. And as someone who has never really showed much interest in a Spring Break trip, that negative connotation is all I know. It seems as if it is just a week that thousands of college students flock to the warmest destinations and binge drink for seven days. Corporations and television stations like MTV capitalize on these shenanigans, broadcasting them live from the hottest spots like Panama City and Cancun. The media paints this chaotic picture of the week with girls in wet t-shirts and boys doing push-ups on a stage in the sand. Or at least that’s what I remember seeing on TV.
Nevertheless, these organizations jump at the opportunity to exploit college students, and make them out to be the biggest party animals the U.S. has ever seen. As college students, we are made out to be these wild, raging alcoholics who have no morals in the media when these corporations advertise Spring Break. But does anyone ever consider why college students let so loose during that week?
Booking a trip to Vegas, it is obvious that I had the intention of partying and having a fun time. However, my motivation was not to book the trip to get drunk at a pool party. While I knew there was a high possibility of that happening, I booked the trip because I wanted to relax, spend time with friends, and get far away from all my looming responsibilities. And I think that is the majority of student’s feelings when they book these Spring Break trips. While most students do realize what is going to happen at these locations, I think their drive to go on the trip comes from a place of exhaustion and anxiety.
Most university Spring Break falls either before or very soon to midterms, somewhere between March 5 and 29. This the peak of the semester, and usually when students tend to get the most stressed out. With the added stress of midterms from the usual stress of class work comes the need to let loose. And Spring Break presents the perfect outlet to decompress and forget about all the pressure of tests, projects, and homework.
While I’m sure the media does exaggerate what happens at these locations, students are going to let loose whatever way they seem fit. Whether its drinking on the beach, hiking through the mountains, or playing the slots in Vegas, students should be able to advantage of the opportunity to have fun free from judgment. Spring Break is one week free of responsibility so it’s only natural to want to have the time of your life before the harsh reality of college settles back in.