Where did my winter break go?

DOWNEY - With the holiday festivities coming to an end after this week, many of Downey's college students will either continue to enjoy their winter vacation peacefully or once again start to stress over the fast-approaching spring semester.Depending on which institute a Downey college student attends, the length of winter vacation could vary anywhere from three to five weeks. With the first two weeks of that time consisting of either never-ending family festivities or double shifts at work to handle the holiday rush, students who attend CSUs still have three weeks following the holidays to properly enjoy their rest. "By having five weeks off for winter break, it allows students to relax from all the hard work and grants them more time to spend with their loved ones," said student Sonia Loera. Spending more quality time with the family and fitting in proper rest is crucial for students who spent those weeks leading up to break stressing over class schedules, essays and project deadlines, and the dreaded final exams week. Having to think about it all over again for the spring is the last thing on a busy college student's mind, especially since the end of the fall semester is still fresh. "I am very grateful for the five weeks we get off because during these five weeks, I feel I am able to rest from the semester's hard work," said another student Catalina Guzman. "We spent four months with homework and tests and stress so it is very rejuvenating to get five weeks where we can get ourselves physically and mentally prepared for next semester." While five weeks of vacation seems completely ideal for a student in need of a head-to-toe rest, CSUs and certain private colleges are only privileged with such extensive breaks. Several UCs operate on the quarter system, with those students heading back to class as early as Jan. 3 while junior colleges get three weeks off, starting their spring semester Jan. 10. Though many junior college students would enjoy a longer vacation, to them any break is better than no break at all. "I think three weeks is enough," said student Cristal Alvarez. "It doesn't compare to five weeks but it keeps you more on track because it doesn't give you too much time to get way too lazy." No matter how long or how short the vacation may be, college students are more than thankful for the time they have to breathe between scantron exams and stressing over their spring classes. The idea of having long winter vacations sounds great and all, but for the college students with a set, get-up-and-go mindset, the length of the break is only just a number. "I think we should be happy with whatever break our school gives us," said student Amanda Rodriguez. "A couple of weeks, with or without a job, is a perfect amount of days to enjoy the holiday with my family and still get organized for next semester."

********** Published: December 30, 2010 - Volume 9 - Issue 37