As I have gone along blogging for over two years now, I have always been in search of new ways to expand my boundaries. I have always been looking for new interesting topics and categories to discuss. This keeps things fresh for me as a writer and hopefully, you as a reader.
Recently, I was trying to think of an area of interest that I really haven’t covered much in my blogs. It finally dawned on me. I spent 9 years of my life as a college student. It was a huge segment of my life. No, I am not going back to college and believe it or not, I have moved on from my college years, but I am in a position where I could give some, what I feel is sound advice to people who are in college.
That is why I have decided to start writing a portion of my blogs that will be focused on the life and needs of college students. I will offer any advice I might have from things I learned along the way. Even if you are like me and college is way back in the rearview mirror, you will hopefully enjoy the blogs and at least have some fond remembrances. Maybe these blogs will stir some ideas up in you from your college years that you can share with us all and we can all learn some important lessons along the way.
With that in mind, I would like to introduce my first blog geared towards college kids. Wait, did I just say college kids? Yes I did. I guess that officially makes me old then.
For today’s blog I wanted to cover a topic that seems very relevant with summer quickly approaching. Should I go to summer school or not?
When I was in college doing my undergrad in Animal Science at Iowa State, I was also a football player. The NCAA had a rule that if you were a scholarship player you had to be taking summer classes to be eligible to have your classes, room, and board paid for. Since it was important for us to stay in Ames during the summer so we could do our summer workout program, it only made sense that I would take summer classes along the way. That is exactly what I did. I took summer classes for my first 4 summers I lived in Ames.
Overall, I would say the experience was a great one. Some of the classes went really fast and covered a lot of material in a short amount of time. It was difficult to study in the summer when my friends were off having fun adventures, but it is something that can really pay dividends if you feel you are up for it.
While most students can’t wait for summer break, taking a few classes during the summer can be beneficial. If you are a person who is considering taking summer courses this summer either out of necessity or voluntarily, here is my list of positives and negatives about taking summer school that will hopefully help you with your decision:
- If you are looking to graduate early, summer classes can shave a semester or even a year off your college career.
- Most summer courses are condensed into a 2,3, or 4 week period, so if you’d prefer a brief time with a dreaded course, it’s a good option.
- Summer classes have a more relaxed atmosphere as students and even professors loosen up. The classes tend to be smaller, so you can have more interaction with the professors.
- If you are a scholarship athlete, you get your classes, room, and board paid for.
- Summer allows your brain time to rest. For some, summer courses can cause burnout in the fall due to lack of mental downtime.
- Shortened courses mean more homework. Say goodbye to your free time in the summer.
- Summer school costs more money. You’ve already paid thousands for fall and spring courses. So why pay extra?
- The speed at which the material is covered can make it hard to comprehend and retain all the information covered in the class.
Taking summer classes might be a good option for you, but it is not for everyone. Here are some questions that you should consider when trying to decide if you should register for summer classes:
Do I need to take this course during the summer to graduate on time?
Does this course usually fill up fast during the regular semesters?
Can I afford it?
Who is the professor teaching the summer course? Do I want to take a class with him/her?
Hopefully this will help guide you in your decision about whether summer classes are for you or not.