Usually winter break is the time that Marist students go home to relax and spend time with their family. However, not everyone chooses to spend their break this way. I am someone who is only truly happy when my schedule is jam-packed with activities, so for the past two years I have returned to Marist’s campus after Christmas in order to be more productive (okay, and maybe just because I love Marist so much!)
Last year during intersession, I took Abnormal Psychology. On-campus classes during intersession are three hours and forty-five minutes a day, five days a week for two weeks. That seems like a ton of class, especially all those hours of sitting, but it was one hundred percent worth it. In a psych class, learning case studies is really important. Because of the long class periods winter-session has, our class was able to watch full movies without being interrupted by a time constraint. I was also not distracted by worrying about other classes. Being able to focus on just one subject allowed me to dedicate my time and effort in a better manner. It was tough to learn the information that would normally be covered in a week in just one day but it was far from impossible. I really got to immerse myself in the information more than I am usually able to during the regular semester and got a great grade because of it. I almost wish I could take all of my classes this way!
This year during intersession, I worked in the Admissions Office. I am a student assistant during the school year, but during breaks, all the student workers do different tasks from what they are normally assigned. This gives all of the student-workers an opportunity to learn all of the aspects of the admissions office and makes us well-rounded employees. During this winter intersession, I got to work as a greeter. The greeter is the person who welcomes students to Marist when they walk into our office. This job is important because this is often the very first impression that prospective students get of Marist. I had never done this job before and was pretty nervous when I first started. However, by the second week, I was so comfortable talking to families that I ended up talking to one group for almost an hour!
The staff and other student workers are great as well. Because there are so few student workers over the break, we all became pretty close. The admissions counselors and staff are also great. Even though this is one of the busiest times of year for the counselors because of all the applications we receive, all the counselors are still in good moods. They truly care about each applicant and spend a great deal of time on every single application. When I was applying to colleges, I envisioned admissions counselors to be snobby people sitting around a table searching for the tiniest flaw in my application so that they could reject me. Our admissions counselors are the complete opposite of this. They even got us pizza for lunch one day when it was snowing!
I am also a member of the Marist Crew team and staying here over winter intersession helped my training so much. When I’m home, all I want to do is sit on my couch and eat my mom’s delicious food. I also have to pay for a gym membership. When I’m here, I can take advantage of all the (nicer) facilities Marist has without paying a thing! Both the gym and the boathouse are open over the break and I was able to get into a good workout routine without having to shell out any extra of my hard earned money.
Staying over winter-intersession for the past two years has been one of the best decisions I have made at Marist. I learned a lot from my psych class while being able to dedicate myself to one subject. I also love learning new aspects of my job and experiencing different side of the admissions process. I would definitely recommend this experience to anyone looking for a change from the winter blues!
By Tory Mather
Class of 2012
follow me on twitter @editoryal