Every student’s winter break bucket list
For most people, winter means hot drinks, gloomy skies, pulling out jumpers and blankets from the back of the cupboard and below-20-degree temperatures that obstruct all the fun outdoor activities that Australians are used to nine months out of the year. That is, unless you’re a uni student.
For us, winter means another semester has come and gone, we’re free from essay writing and exam study, and four to six weeks of holidays are upon us. While this sounds like a lot, it’s important to spend this precious period of freedom wisely, which means catching up on the things our busy uni schedules have prevented us from doing for the last 12 weeks and, of course, being (somewhat) productive with our time.
Organise your study space
The last thing you want to do at the end of a semester is revisit the chaotic area of your house you call a study space. Chances are you still have pages of exam notes scattered across every inch of your desk and multiple coffee mugs from those late-night cram sessions.
We’ve all been there, but there’s no better way to leave a semester behind than finally organising all your textbooks and subject notes and making your study space useable again. Organising this stuff now will give you one less thing to do before classes start again and will heighten your productivity for at least the first few weeks of next semester.
Get out of town
Seriously, just plan a trip and go. Whether it’s a roadie with friends or finally going home to visit your family, a change of scene is good for the soul and has even been proven to reduce stress levels and improve your overall mental health.
Unless you have the most lax job in the world, you won’t have many chances to pick up and leave once you enter the workforce. So, take advantage of it now and give your brain the much-needed break it deserves.
Set goals for the future
Winter break means you finally have the time to breathe and think about your life beyond your exam timetable. Whether you’ve been considering postgraduate study or want to get a foot in the door of your chosen career straight out of uni, use this time to really think about your plans post-graduation and what you need to do to get there.
Maybe you need to take on extra units to increase that pesky average, or your résumé needs a little sprucing with a relevant internship or work experience. Whatever it is, winter break is the perfect opportunity to research, plan, set goals, and spend some quality time pondering those life decisions.
Invest time in your hobbies
Every student knows how it feels to sacrifice our most treasured pastimes to fit classes, assignments, extracurricular activities and any semblance of a personal life into our crazy schedules. This is an unfortunate by-product of any uni degree, but winter break gives us the chance to compensate for the semester of neglect our hobbies have received.
Whether you have a stack of books waiting to be read, an instrument ready to be learned, or a pile of wool waiting to be knitted, now is the time to indulge. Our hobbies are an integral part of who we are and people who have them have a lower risk of depression and high blood pressure, so go forth with reckless abandon, my friends.
And, obviously, binge Netflix guilt-free
With no uni deadlines looming and a list of unwatched shows that has been teasing you all semester, this one kind of speaks for itself.
Penny is a Philosophy and Media and Communications student at the University of Melbourne. She enjoys traveling, snacking, and not going to the gym.