Opinion: IWU needs a day off in between Labor Day and fall break

By Farah Bassyouni Sep 30, 2022

                                                                                  Credit: Liam Killian

With fall break approaching, students and faculty are astounded by how quickly this school year is flying by. Although it was expected that fall break would be later in the semester due to this year’s later start and end dates, my classmates and I wish that it could be sooner in the semester to provide relief from busy schedules. If this isn’t a possibility, I suggest a day off in between Labor Day and fall break weekend. 

There are about seven weeks in between Labor Day and fall break, almost two consecutive months worth of classes, sporting events, extracurricular activities and late nights spent studying at Ames. That’s not to mention the impending stress of midterms that fall both before and after fall break weekend. 

For most students, including myself, fall break is the first time in the semester that they are able to visit home due to having so many prior obligations during the week. Having that Friday off for fall break is a saving grace as it serves as an opportunity to spend an extended period of time with family and friends without any interruption. 

As mentioned prior, fall break lands around the time of midterms, when students are overwhelmed with a surplus of papers, projects and approaching exams that can make or break their grade. 

So, for those whose professors schedule due dates after the long weekend, those students are less likely to enjoy their time at home and more likely to spend it in their childhood bedroom on their laptop desperately trying to finish an assignment so they can eat dinner with their parents. 

Labor Day is often viewed as being too early in the fall semester, with this year’s landing on the weekend following the first week of classes. Many students, including myself, find it too early to go home as students have only been on campus for about a week at that point. 

In order to improve students’ mental health as the semester picks up, an additional day off in between Labor Day and fall break could allow students the opportunity to go home to find some relief from the inevitable stress of being a college student.

 Perhaps a Monday off with no classes at the beginning of October would be a prime time for this much-needed break. This could grant students who live far away from campus the opportunity to travel home and give first year students the necessary relief of trying to navigate living on their own for the first time. 

Three day weekends allow for students to regain their rest while allowing them more time to catch up on their homework. Not to mention the additional time they can spend socializing with friends and family that is imperative to maintaining good mental health. 

Having an additional three day weekend in the semester would allow students to spread their work over three days rather than two, which would result in them to allocate more time for sleep. According to UCL.com, getting enough sleep allows for students to boost their performance and creativity. 

If students were allowed more time to sleep in, rest, and get a head start on schoolwork, their overall performance would improve in granting IWU students an additional three day weekend. If IWU administration truly values students’ mental health and classroom performance, they will consider implementing an additional break in the fall semester.

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