Summer: The time for beaches, sun and friends – unless, of course, you find yourself stuck in summer classes. No one wants to take summer classes, but no one wants to graduate late either. This makes summer courses a necessary evil that several college students must endure. While they can seem rough, by looking deeper you can easily find ways to make the summer semester more tolerable. If you look deep enough and keep an open mind, you may find that many different types of people hold the key to not only making your summer less bleak and studious, but memorable and fun.
Here are the top ten MVPs that know how to make summer classes better.
1. Morning Classmates
If you find yourself taking summer classes, good luck. Add on a morning classes to that, and may the gods have mercy on your soul. Morning classes have a tendency to feel draining even during spring and fall terms. When taken during summer, however, the experience of waking up early and dragging yourself to class feels especially soul-crushing. You should have a crazy amount of respect for your fellow classmates who endure the struggle along with you each morning. You guys share the same fatigue and resistance to get up in the morning, but you also all collectively decide to fight off sleep in class together for the sake of academic success. “Morning classes are the worst,” said Florida State University junior Amanda Mak. “It takes everything I have to pull myself out of bed to come here each day.” You don’t have to congratulate everyone for finding the will to arrive to this tiresome classroom setting, but recognize that they all experience that same struggle as you do to get out of bed will show you that you don’t fly solo when it comes to dealing with the summer semester.
2. Life of the Parties
Tracking down a way to have a fun time on a Friday or Saturday night rests among one of the many things that summer semesters make more difficult. While some clubs may stay open for summer hours or you might find a few parties scattered around campus, the overall lack of people left on campus or in town makes it difficult for either of those venues to thrive like they would in a fall or spring semester. For this reason, you must give mad props to those who don’t use the summer semester as an excuse to calm down. If anything, these people find themselves overcompensating for the lack of students by letting loose in order to ensure that others have a good time during the often vacant summer months. “Summer is no excuse for me not to get lit,” said Florida State University senior Claudio Williams. Add a person like this to your summer crew and they will show you that college fun doesn’t have to stop just because the summer semester starts.
3. TAs who Understand
This may come as a shock to a lot of college students, but, get this: TAs…they once filled your undergraduate shoes too. Technically they still go to their own classes as students, just as part of a more advanced course of study than undergrads. In other words, they know the struggles that we go through as undergrads scrambling to receive our degrees. Due to this fact, TAs who teach summer courses seem much more understanding and forgiving during the summer season. They probably don’t want to show up there anymore than we do given that the one known benefit of becoming a teacher comes as you having summers off. The uncommonly forgiving and sympathetic attitude seems common amongst summer instructors. “Several of my teachers do seem a bit nicer over the summer,” said Georgia State University sophomore Tariq Williams. “I got away with a lot of stuff I probably would have gotten attacked for in the fall.” If your instructor has a nice and understanding demeanor, don’t take it for granted. It may very well last for only the middle three months of the year.
4. Quizlet Makers (not takers)
Most of us have used it, but how many of us actually make notes to aid other students on Quizlet? This online resource has aided countless students’ study efforts, yet try naming anyone who you’ve seen actually posting content on it. You must therefore, give a major shout out to any of your classmates who take time out of their day to post material for your summer class on Quizlet. These selfless individuals have ensured a passing grade for many a student in the past and they, one day very soon, end up bailing you out of your failing grade. Remember to salute these heroes by vocally expressing your gratitude instead of silently saluting their heroic efforts.
5. Seat Partners
We all know the unspoken rule of entering a new semester. The seat that we choose to sit in on the first or second day of class typically ends up the one we personally assign ourselves for the rest of the semester. This comes as an important decision due to the fact that most classes encourage collaboration amongst students, so the seat you choose may determine who you end up collab-ing with for the rest of the class. This collaboration feels even more important during summer since you are all going through very turbulent times together. This shared summer strife can often make for a better collaboration than in the fall or spring semesters. You and your seat partner will come to lean on each other for aid in class and could potentially help each other pass. While it may feel awkward at first, the summer seat partner can reveal itself as an aspect of the semester worth remembering.
6. Student Drivers
Much like the TAs, student drivers during the summer semester seem far less egregious than those present during the fall or spring. Perhaps part of it comes from the lack of students, which opens up more student parking so drivers don’t feel that they have to rush and fight for a spot. Normally road-rage prone students seem to uphold a level of automotive decorum that feels nonexistent during the crowded fall and spring semesters. People let each other into lanes, drivers act warier towards pedestrians and car honking goes to an all-time low. “It’s not like the bad drivers are gone, but they are at least nicer about being bad drivers,” said Florida State University junior Eric Evans. Take advantage of the calm streets while you can. Come August, they may revert back to Mad Max levels of insanity and ferocity
7. The Ones Who Stay Behind
While much of your squad may have gone their separate ways to return home for the summer, you remain on campus to suffer without your ride-or-die crew. Nothing makes a semester more memorable than adventures with your friends. In the case of the summer semester however, it remains less a factor of “who am I hanging out with tonight?” than a, “who’s still left in town?” Those few have the potential to act as your summer semester savior. While you may not seem able to squad up and go out like you would in fall or spring, this friend who stayed behind with you will keep the summer from getting boring and provide you with a source of camaraderie until the rest of the pack gets back in August.
8. Any Place Open 24 hours
You may have noticed that the summer semester shakes up the operating hours of many of the campus amenities and venues. Suddenly the campus Subway only stays open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. as opposed to 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Suddenly the school bus system only runs from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. as opposed to 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. When this shake-up occurs, you must give far more credit to 24-hour stores and restaurants for their consistent operating hours. These establishments provide you with a reliable means of grabbing something to eat whether you find yourself without a meal plan for the summer, or buying quick snacks at inopportune hours of the day. You may take it for granted that everything has more convenient hours during fall and spring, but these business can often feel like one of the many things keeping your life afloat during the trying times of this semester.
9. The Holder of the Account
Admit it, the summer semester can feel a tad boring. With only a portion of your school’s total students in town, it may seem like very little exists for you to do. Luckily, you can use this summer calm to catch up on some of your favorite shows, and maybe discover new ones that have been recommended to you. As broke college students, we cannot afford all the services needed to experience the best entertainment that television has to offer. Paying for Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, HBO GO, Crunchyroll and YouTube Red every month gets a pricey after a while. Cue that one miracle friend who lets us mooch off of their streaming service account in order to reap the benefits of their subscription. Some more mutually beneficial friendships even make each person pay for a single service and share the account amongst the group. These friends deserve your thanks and respect as they help the summer go by faster with countless hours of entertainment that you don’t have to pay for. Don’t take advantage of their generosity—appreciate their service. If you ever need any more reason to do so, think about how miserable your summer might feel without Netflix or Hulu. *shudders*
10. The Staff
While teachers and students receive a lot of the credit for bearing the weight of the Summer semester, the custodial staff and campus workers deserve your upmost appreciation. While several of the teaching staff get to go home for the summer and relax, these dutiful individuals sacrifice their summers to ensure that your facilities remain clean and functional. They deserve all the esteem that we can give them, but you’ll never see them asking for thanks or recognition in return. If you find a second, show your appreciation of a custodial staff member or a receptionist/advisor by engaging them in a conversation or just saying thanks. The job can feel tedious and thankless at times but nice students can make our days a bit better,” said FSU custodian Mabel Williams They serve as the ultimate unsung heroes of any campus and deserve the treatment as such.