It’s getting close to summer, and as a college student, i’m really wondering how should I spend my summer? Even though I get out of school in 4 weeks, my summer plans are still up in the air. I just got back from spring break two days ago (yes I had a really late spring break this year), and while I was on the plane back to college, I overheard an elementary school teacher talking about how she teaches at a year-round school. I found this really interesting because this is the first time I’ve actually heard of year-round schooling.It turns out that despite what most people think, year-round schooling has the same number of academic days as a regular school would. The difference is only the amount of breaks. Whereas regular schools have short winter and spring breaks, year-round schools have 3 week breaks and more 3 day weekends. Personally I wouldn’t want to attend a year-round school because I like being able to look forward to 3 months of no worries.
For college students, I think that the addition of summer school is like year-round schooling. Most students spend their summers at the beach, on vacation or doing other activities, but there students who choose to stay in school during the summer. There are benefits though to working hard while everyone else is vacationing though. Last year, I took Legal Environment of Business at my local community college. Taking this class was actually beneficial because I was able to take the class online while I was traveling, and still earn credit towards my degree. Especially at colleges where classes are difficult to get, summer school could mean the difference between graduating on time or staying an extra term. Even if you’re not looking to graduate early, taking summer school can lighten you course load during the academic school year.
Unfortunately, there are also downsides to taking summer school. Summer classes are not usually included in tuition which can be a real bummer because each credit can cost a fortune. I know that at Chapman it costs $610 per credit, and with a 3 credit class that could get really expensive (don’t forget to include housing). Also not all classes are offered during the summer so it may be difficult to register for classes you need.
I find that summer classes can be worth it because it’s still cheaper than staying having to stay an extra term. It’s also more beneficial to keep your brain in school mode over the summer rather than forget everything. I still think that it might be nicer to get a job over the summer and save money to pay off my student loans. Maybe i’ll consider taking summer school at some point, but for now, going to school year-round seems like too much.