Making the Most of the End of the Semester


By Cate Carrejo

As I write this, I am in the process of boarding my plane back from spring break in Boca Raton, Florida. The gate attendant just promised my fellow passengers and I a smooth trip back to “Paradise, New Jersey,” also known as Newark Liberty Airport. I scoffed to myself and thought bitterly, “I’m leaving paradise, not going back to it.”

I suspect that most of you are just as unhappy about leaving your tropical or snowy paradise as I am about leaving Florida. My Facebook and Snapchat were full of white sand beaches, Vienna cafes and Greek ruins, places that make New York City look positively dull. After a week of non-stop sunshine and palm trees, of lazy days and crazy nights, the thought of going back to school is almost physically painful.

All good things must come to an end, and vacation tends to have an unsettlingly abrupt nature to its end. But it’s not so much the end of vacation that we mourn, but the return to the generally unpleasant realities of a student. One day, you’re carefree and floating through decisions and hours; the next day, you’re back to the regiment and responsibility of school. Break is a huge tease; it’s supposed to build you back up to get ready to finish the semester strong, but it really just leaves you hating the fact that you even have to go back. Vacation gives the illusion of adult independence that gets harshly shattered by the contradiction of arbitrary and mandatory that school entails.

What we have to remember is that we have to make the most of this time at the end of the semester. This is the part of the semester that counts and we have to make it count, despite the apathy that tends to set in after spring break. And even if it’s less than ideal, the manic hectic spring weekend/finals week/move out blur is a welcome rush of adrenaline. This is the work hard, play hard, whirlwind sprint at the end of the marathon that we have subconsciously been waiting all year to reach. So no matter how hard it will be to pry our minds away from the beach, we must launch ourselves into the end of this semester with the intensity each day deserves.

I’m on my plane now and leaving Florida behind me. The transformative and uplifting promise of the last chance to accomplish and experience something new before the end of the school year provides comfort as the beach grows smaller behind and below me. Now I have to make Fordham my paradise, and perhaps that simply means facing each day with the enthusiasm contained in possibility. I hope as you read this, it helps you set your mind with a similar attitude to embrace the last few weeks of this year. Tackle whatever you have been putting off, set a few goals, study meaningfully for your impending tests. Don’t waste this time waiting for summer, because it will be here before we know it!