Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Whitman news since 1896

Whitman Wire

Board Editorial: Too much pressure to be amazing

Many Whitman students spend their breaks, semesters or years traveling abroad, working in amazing internships or participating in other unique and profound experiences. But many do not.

There is nothing wrong with traveling during breaks or studying abroad. In fact, it is a good idea to take advantage of what time is available. But there is too much emphasis placed on doing amazing things all the time. There is too much pressure from fellow Whitties and the college to participate in new opportunities all of the time. Is it not possible to just enjoy a break for the sake of having a break once in a while?

With spring just around the corner, study abroad in the minds of first-years and sophomores and summer rapidly approaching, it seems like all you hear on campus these days is “What are you doing for (blank)?”: What are you doing for spring break? What are you doing for study abroad? What are you doing for the summer?

What if you don’t want to do anything? Sometimes, that doesn’t seem like an option.

For the two weeks of spring break, many Whitman students will be participating in alternative spring break programs, traveling abroad with family or the school, participating in intensive OP trips or doing any number of other exciting things. Those that aren’t doing any of these things will likely be looking for an internship or other cool thing to do over the summer.

At Whitman, a large number of students participate in these programs. Forty-eight percent of the student body studies abroad for a summer, semester or year. More than half of Whitman students have an internship some time during their time at Whitman.

All of these are great things to do, but they are not the only option. If we as students want to spend our break relaxing, reading a book, watching way too many movies, maybe even getting ahead: or just caught up: on homework, then we should be able to do so without shame.

Though there is no explicit pressure from the college to participate in alternative spring break or other programs, there is sometimes an undertone of disappointment that we have noticed when people do not take every opportunity presented to them.

And this does not just apply to spring break. There is a large amount of pressure and expectation from the college to get internships or other opportunities during the summer.

We want to get ahead as much as the next person, but sometimes just stepping back and living life while it lasts is good too. The breaks should be about taking time off from the pressures of school as well as whatever else. It is hard to feel relieved of this pressure, though, if there is so much expectation to not waste your time during breaks.

We want to participate and to make the most of our time even during breaks. But we also want to relax and not do anything during our time off. Is that too much to ask?

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