Megan Brownell photojournalist
While university students have just recently gotten back from thanksgiving break, or a combined “fall break” as PSU calls it. It was nice to have a break and most of us go home and see family, those about 10 weeks between our last break of labor day got tough really fast for a lot of people.
For me, I became super overwhelmed really quickly from exam after exam, big projects or assignments, and even more from things I am involved in outside of classes. It was extremely stressful trying to juggle all of my classes, a job, and still being involved in other things on campus as well. During that time, all I wanted was a break from it all, I needed a week off to help my mental health come back to normal and to just go home and forget about all of my responsibilities here in Pittsburg. But I did not have that. While I watched friends from other schools get a week long fall break, I had to sit back and wait all the way until Thanksgiving for a breather from everything.
Granted, having a full week off for Thanksgiving is nice since not everywhere gets it. I was able to finally get that break I needed and go home and spend nine days with my family celebrating the holiday and beginning to the christmas season.
For me, this is only my second year at PSU, but I have heard that before COVID-19 we did have a fall break. So why did they take it away? I understand doing this in 2020 with the height of the pandemic so people wouldn’t go home and come back causing an outbreak. But now we do the same thing coming back after Thanksgiving, so what’s the difference?
Some people think having a fall break would only give us Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday off for Thanksgiving when that doesn’t have to be the case. Some schools have a fall break and still have all week off. A great solution would be starting one week earlier in August so we still get the full 16 week semester.
I know I am not the only student wanting a fall break. Having a fall break would help improve mental health in students by having a break to not worry about all of the big assignments hitting week after week rather than it going for 10 long weeks with no break. Having that long with no break is very hard on students and having a break can help improve grades by giving a boost to their mental health. I know for me when my mental health is better I do better in school because I have more motivation to do it, and I don’t want to just lay around in bed and procrastinate on it all.
So in conclusion, a fall break would be very beneficial for students at the university in mental health ways and to make the whole semester go smoother for everyone.