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Summer On Campus

Going to school over the summer was definitely something I never thought I would do. I didn’t understand the allure of taking classes during the one chance students get to simply breath, and not be overburdened with mounds of class work. I truly believe that summer’s purpose is to actually take a break. Especially with the momentous conclusion of the notorious junior year, the prospect of ‘summer school’ did not seem appealing.

Yet, the brochures from different colleges seemed to keep finding their way into my mailbox, beckoning me to their campuses. The emails for various pre-college programs were virtually overflowing, and the posters of green quads on the fourth floor further tempted me to dedicate at least some of my time to a class outside the comfortable walls of my school.

I soon discovered that the beauty of taking a summer class was the ability to choose. Every year, my schedule has been too full to accommodate the most interesting elective classes my school offers. This summer would be my chance to finally focus solely on something that interested me. When would I have another chance to pursue and dedicate myself only to a creative writing class? Maybe during retirement. But, I don’t want to count on that.

This summer I took a playwriting and screenplay writing class at Brown University. The experience was absolutely amazing, and although there was a heavy workload, it was the kind of work I enjoyed doing. I had the opportunity not only to learn about the techniques of writing for Broadway and Hollywood, but also the chance to craft my own skits, monologues, play, movie treatment, and portion of a screenplay. In addition, my work was read, complimented, reviewed, and critiqued by my classmates and professor. In such a short period of time, I grew ineffable amounts as a writer, and acquired skills I’ll use every time I sit down in front of a blank page.

Furthermore, I experienced life on a vibrant campus, which I feel will help me next year as a college freshman. At my pre-college program, there was a myriad of events, clubs, and trips to take advantage of, so I definitely learned the importance of time management on my own, no parent in-put available. Balancing my class work, a cappella group, and my friends was challenging, but now, I am all that more prepared for next fall.

I want to use my experience to encourage underclassmen at my school to go to a pre-college program, or any program that involves living on a college campus, is completely worthwhile and rewarding. Each element of my experience impacted me in an irreversible way. Using a portion of summer break to explore and develop a passion alongside students with that same passion is more valuable than I can impart. The students at my program were from all over the world, which added yet another truly meaningful layer to my summer. I now know a couple words of German, Greek, and Hindi. (I know this will come in handy eventually.)

If you are passionate about something, anything, summer is the perfect time to pursue that interest. That doesn’t necessarily mean going to a college program, but for me, living on campus was extraordinarily stimulating. I never thought I would voluntarily go to summer school—I am so unbelievably glad I did.



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alisha156 said...
Jul. 18, 2012 at 11:57 am:

Summer at Brown was amazing for me!

Met so many new people who were interested in the same things i was. 

there are a number of classes you can pick from, it's impossible to find something that you're NOT interested in. and the staff here are super friendly and bubbly. 

there was always something to keep you busy, even weekend trips to newport and boston.

what I particulary enjoyed was the amount of freedom we recieved. It gave us the real "on your own" c... (more »)

 
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jann said...
Oct. 23, 2010 at 10:23 pm:
Wow, congrats on your experience!  I absolutely agree; summer is the perfect time to explore your interests and get a chance to travel (aka get away from the parents).  Plus the relatively narrow, low-stress nature of  summer makes it fun and memorable.
 
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