The BYU community enjoys only two school holidays during Winter Semester while most other universities in Utah Valley enjoy an extra week off for Spring Break. Scheduling issues and career benefits are the two primary reasons that affect BYU’s decision in regards to spring break.
John Oviatt, a sophomore majoring in English, said that with finals right around the corner, many students are beginning to get stressed. They either want a break or they want to skip the break and get school over with sooner so they can relax.
“For me, this is the point in the semester when things are getting most stressful and I just need a rest,” Oviatt said.
Students want to succeed and sometimes plowing through isn’t the answer, said Erik Porter, a senior majoring in neuroscience. “There is a lot of pressure academically at BYU, so it’d be nice to have a week off to recuperate,” Porter said. “If I was to have a spring break right now I would be a whole new person — a better person.”
Forrest Lamb, who is a sophomore majoring in electrical engineering, said that Spring Break is less about partying for BYU students and more about recharging because it’s placed right before finals. “I wish I had a break right now, even just one day. I think having a Spring Break would be very well placed and very well used,” Lamb said.
Many students suggested that instead of a full week off of school, another long weekend would suffice. “I mean, add another three-day weekend and I’m happy,” said Luis Clinton, a junior majoring in public health.
Another long weekend has been considered by BYU, but there are reasons why it has not been pursued. BYU spokesperson Carri Jenkins is the assistant to the president for University Communications. She explained the logic behind their decision: “BYU has over the years looked at the possibility of some type of break. However, because of the tight scheduling of our campus and the feedback from students regarding employment and internship opportunities, we have not pursued this,” Jenkins said.
Jenkins said the BYU campus is used continually throughout the entire year. “We simply never shut down the campus, as some other colleges and universities do,” Jenkins said. There are four semesters at BYU and in April and August the University hosts commencement exercises. The campus is also used for Women’s Conference and Education Week as well as for the University Conference that occurs prior to Fall Semester.
“Scheduling is not the only reason for BYU having no Spring Break. The second reason is for the advantage of its students,” Jenkins said.
“Our students have found that concluding in April gives them a great advantage when it comes to summer employment and internships. Some can even combine an internship or a study abroad experience with a spring or summer term,” Jenkins said.
Some students agree they perform better academically without having a Spring Break. “I would rather focus on what I am doing right now in school,” said Kate Wright, a freshman majoring in anthropology. “I think with finals coming up, if I took a break, I wouldn’t be thinking about my homework at all. Then finals would hit and I’d be wishing I had that time back to study.”
Students also enjoy and even prefer the benefit of finishing a week earlier. “We get out for summer break a lot faster than most colleges, right? That’s worth it to me to not have a spring break,” Clinton said.
BYU students are divided in their opinion about whether to have spring break or not, but the University stands strong in their decision to do without spring break. “Because of the advantages to the students and the needs upon our campus, I do not see this changing,” Jenkins said.
For more campus opinions on spring break, enjoy the best of #BYUSpringBreak.