As fall progresses, we have reached a point where students at other institutions will begin their fall reading break. But why not NAIT? This year we only got a few extra days off around Thanksgiving, but most other schools get a full week off in November. In my opinion, NAIT students could benefit from having this time off. Even instructors and student’s families would have time to catch their breath and catch up with the busyness of life if we got a full week off.
A full week allows us to catch up on our studies if needed. It would also give us a mental break to prepare for the final stretch of the semester and finals. Instead of being stuck studying at home, those extra days would give us time off to spend time with our families without the pressure of a coming test, quiz or assignment. Also, if you have siblings in other post-secondary institutions, having the same break would allow you to plan for having family over without worrying about scheduling issues. I have this exact problem. In the fall semester, as the middle of November rolls around, all my siblings get the week off to catch up on their studies and recharge before the end of the semester.
All except for me.
I trudge through the cold November days, most of the time through the snow, and onto the bus and train to campus like many other NAIT students where my classes are still running and instructors are still teaching. While I don’t mind the break that we have here at NAIT, I believe that the majority of students would benefit from a week-long reading break in the fall semester.
However, taking this week-long break in the semester wouldn’t come without its costs. The major one that I see is having the semester extended and writing finals later in the month of December instead of being done a week earlier than other schools. As it goes, though, I would take that trade-off. We already finish our fall term a week earlier than other schools, when family and friends are still busy finishing up their work. So we still aren’t aligned with our current finish date.
So maybe for next year, NAIT can try a week-long semester break to help with students’ health. Give us time to refresh, recharge and come back to the rest of the semester ready to succeed and excel in their studies and work here at NAIT.