Summer Stressing or Summer Leisure?

Citlally Delgado '16

Contributing Writer

Let’s face it: as early as the fall semester at Smith College, we start to feel the pressure of finding something to do during the summer. Will we be interning, traveling, working or relaxing? We hope to do it all, but, in reality, we will most likely intern during our summers.  Why is that?  Truth is, we are much more serious about our future than ever before.

There’s an unspoken rule for Smith students to secure a summer internship or summer job.  This is partly because Smith has great connections and a database that allows students to obtain fantastic internships. Smith also has the Praxis program, which gives every student an opportunity to do an unpaid internship funded by the college. The main reason many of us strive for these prestigious internships is to obtain our dream job after graduation.

I think the reason internships have taken over the summers of college students is that today’s job market is highly competitive. Many of us, despite our impeccable resumes, will struggle to obtain a “real world” job straight out of college. We shouldn’t rush it – we will get the jobs we want. It may take longer than we would like, but we will. If someone decided to enjoy the summer and relax, many would think she was wasting time that could be spent getting ahead. I, however, disagree: some people simply need a break. I praise such students for recognizing their personal needs. Throughout the semester, we are all extremely busy keeping up with our classes, working, volunteering and juggling endless activities. It is easy to forget our health, which sometimes requires us to take a break during the summer and relax. It’s called summer break for a reason. There are other instances where our families need us home, whether to work or for personal reasons.

Regardless of what our summer plans are, we should enjoy them. As cliché as it sounds, we should do what we want, regardless of what society expects from us.

This year, I was faced with this exact dilemma. I didn’t know if I wanted to use my Praxis or spend this summer at home after being in Brazil for a year. I ended up choosing to spend the summer abroad in Spain. I will use my Praxis to intern at a school, where I will work as an English teacher. I am beyond excited to travel to a new continent, explore a new country filled with rich culture and  expose myself to my latest interest, education, while teaching English.

So whether Smithies are spending the summer interning with JP Morgan in New York City or traveling around the states with our best friends, enjoy every little bit of it. In the end, it will be a summer full of memories!