Spending Spring Break at Home

by Jana Pritchett, Courier & Press, March 17, 2015 –

Let’s face it. These days paying for college can be a financial strain on a student and his family. After footing the bill for tuition, housing, books, a meal plan, transportation, entertainment, study abroad and more, it really starts to add up. Sometimes there isn’t anything left for a spring break trip.

What’s a poor college student to do? Spending spring break week at home may not sound too appealing, but a spring break “staycation” doesn’t have to be meaningless and boring. It can be an opportunity to recharge, relax, and reconnect. It might even be fun!

Here are some ideas for making the most of your spring break time at home:

1. Recharge your batteries and give your overworked brain a rest. Sleep late, sip your morning coffee leisurely, eat comfort food and enjoy a more relaxed schedule.

2. Reconnect with family and friends. Plan a night out with friends at a favorite restaurant. Enjoy some quality time with your parents, siblings, and grandparents. Schedule a family night to see a movie or play board games. A grandparent might enjoy a fishing trip or going through old photos and videos together.

3. Take a camping trip. Get some friends together and check out a local campground or park. Pitch a tent and enjoy the great outdoors, and savor meals cooked over an open fire. Many state parks such as New Harmony have cabins, hiking trails, bike paths, planned activities, etc. Taking in the sights and sounds of nature can be a powerful stress reliever!

4. Take a short road trip to a bigger city. Evansville is within three hours of Indianapolis, Louisville, Nashville and St. Louis. Pick a city and plan to hit local landmarks and attractions. The possibilities are endless, from museums and parks to restaurants and shopping areas.

5. Volunteer for a nonprofit organization. It might require a little more advance planning, but volunteering is meaningful, rewarding and also a great resume-builder. Many nonprofits would be happy to have a college student willing to help out with office work, tutoring, event planning, or errands.

6. Job shadow. If you’re not sure what you want to do after graduation, spend some time job shadowing in an area of interest. Spring break can be an opportunity to step away from college and get a sneak peek into the real world. This may help you narrow down or weed out career possibilities.

7. Visit the local library or bookstore. Pick out a book to read for pure enjoyment. If possible, read outdoors in the sunshine and soak up some vitamin D. Or check out a classic video you’ve always wanted to see.

For most students, spring break is about getting away from school and hanging out with friends and family. Make the most of whatever you choose to do. Spend some time unplugged from the computer, recharging your batteries and reconnecting with loved ones. Pursuing past times put aside due to the demands of school will leave you feeling refreshed and ready to finish out the semester.