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College students look forward to spring break all year while trudging through schoolwork and snow. In years past, students have saved up their small funds to travel far and wide, while others have simply returned to their refuge at home with their families and friends. Some popular spots to travel in previous years have been Florida, Arizona, Colorado and Europe.

This year, many students will be heading back to their hometowns as COVID-19 continues. Sadly, students will not be sun-tanning in Miami for the week but will instead be trekking through the snow. 

Sarah Kvam, a junior graphic design major, stated with a sigh that she would be at home with her family for the week, “probably painting.” 

Hailey Meadows, a freshman history, economics and politics major, said that she would also be at home “hanging out with old friends from high school” for the week. This is a very common response since the pandemic pushes students to reconnect with loved ones. 

Some students are hoping to get the COVID-19 vaccine over the short break, although the prospect seems unlikely. 

Before the pandemic struck the world, life moved at the speed of light, with people traveling, working and always on the go. Now, with the second spring break commencing during the pandemic, life seems to be going at a much slower pace than students were used to. 

The effects of COVID-19, such as social distancing, have been giving everyone a chance to take things in and breathe. It has been a time to set schoolwork aside and focus on personal hobbies and interests, as well as reconnecting with old friends and spending time with family. This can be a time to cherish because students can reflect on the past semester and spend quality time with loved ones. 

There are also plenty of activities to engage in while spending time away from school, such as reading, watching Netflix and going for walks. More ambitious activities could include picking up basics in a new language, going to museums and brushing up on art or coding skills. 

Regardless of how spring break is spent this year, it will be a needed time for reflection and relaxation. The stress of school, the day-to-day workload and the pandemic weigh down students across the nation, but there is much to be grateful for during this time as well as in the upcoming spring break. 

For more spring break ideas, see “12 simple ways to have more fun this spring break,” by Lillie Jaenchen.