Once you’re in college, the summer break can seem a lot longer than what you’re used to, especially if you’re from India. We’ve usually had summer vacations that lasted six weeks to a little over two months maximum, but three and a half months was something completely unexpected when we finished our first year. While many people will be going for summer programs or working in internships, those don’t always last the whole summer period. In addition to this, there are plenty of us who decide that we don’t want to try out an internship this year or go to another university for a summer course. But what do you do with a quarter of a year to spare? Here are some ideas:
1. Volunteer – There is no shortage of organizations or communities that would love an extra pair of hands (and critical thinking skills) to help out for a few weeks. Whether it’s a non-profit, a social activism group, or a religious community, they could use some help in planning and executing events and initiatives. It feels good to work for a cause you care about, and the lessons you learn there aren’t always found in the classroom.
2. Develop a hobby/skill – Spend a couple of hours each day polishing a skill or two you enjoy. Baking? Try out new recipes and make use of that oven at home. Writing? Start a blog or publish stories online. Join a hobby or sports class if you can, or sign up for a course on a site.
3. Learn a language – Three months of dedicated daily practice can get you reasonably comfortable with a new language (subject to the language you choose). If you’re preparing for a language proficiency test, summer is a great time to prepare.
4. Travel around the town/city – Explore your hometown. If you live in a large city, take a bus/metro to anywhere and look around. What are these areas like? Who knows, you may meet someone new or discover another place to hang out.
5. Balance your life – While at college, life can get crazy: sleeping late or not at all, eating out all the time, and not having time to exercise thanks to classes and clubs. The summer is a good time then to unlearn all these habits you pick up in college that you know are messing with your system. Get eight hours of sleep, take walks, eat healthy home food and balance your diet. And don’t forget to keep up the change when you return for the next term.
6. Redesign/clean your room – This might be something your parents want you to do…if you’re anything like me and have three shelves full of random things that you haven’t used in five years. You could spend some time each day keeping your parents happy–I mean, clearing up the mess–and having a spacious room that looks good and feels good.
7. Relax – I mean, isn’t that what summer break is for?
Edited by Gauri Jhangiani
Images curated by Viraj Malani