LETTER: K-State should continue to strive for a fall break

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Students walk out of Waters Hall as the sun sets on Oct. 23, 2018. On Monday, Provost Charles Taber approved a calendar for the 2022 to 2025 academic years without a fall break. (Rowan Jones | Collegian Media Group)

After wishing that Kansas State had a fall break for years, I did not know about the joint efforts to institute one until reading the Collegian article on Monday, when it was already decided against.

Even if it is too late to add a fall break for 2022-2025, I strongly believe this is a goal we should strive toward in the future.

Each October, when stress levels are at their peak, students have to look ahead and face the fact that we have no break in sight. Continuing studies can feel almost pointless in the face of seemingly never-ending work and stress. I remember feeling desperately in need of time off as a freshman, only to look at the calendar and see we still had eight more weeks until Thanksgiving.

Looking at those eight weeks then, I could not even imagine going that much longer without time off. The situation worked out okay for me, but I truly believe the intense stress I felt could have been lessened if we had had a small break to look forward to.

At first, I assumed that this was simply how it was everywhere, that this stretch of work and stress until Thanksgiving was just part of the college experience. However, when I realized that many other schools in Kansas already had fall breaks, I was surprised and honestly upset.

As a school that prides itself on caring about students and their wellbeing, implementing a small break to help us cope with fall semester stress seems like a natural step, especially now that so many students are requesting it. I am aware there are many factors that go into this sort of decision. However, I would ask anyone reading this to please honestly consider the day-to-day impacts this decision can have on students’ health and wellbeing.

The proposed schedule is one that works at other schools, and I believe if we implement it here, the gains in student wellbeing would far outweigh any downsides. Just last week, a friend told me she “could not even imagine” going until Thanksgiving without a break. I personally would be proud to be part of a campus that makes sure future K-Staters don’t have to.

Natalie Wolf is a senior in English and Spanish. The views and opinions expressed in this column are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of the Collegian. Please send comments to opinion@kstatecollegian.com.

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