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Thanksgiving deserves more than fall break

By Ryan Konicek
On November 16, 2012

  • Ryan Konicek. Isabelle Chapman / The DePauw

Thanksgiving - a joyous occasion celebrated with food, family, parades, football and Black Friday shopping. It is about honoring old traditions and making new ones. This holiday is a day for giving thanks for all the good in your life, for everything you have been given; everything you have been blessed with. As students attending DePauw University, we are allotted a total of five days for our Thanksgiving holiday - three school days and a weekend. I do not believe that the amount of time given to us is enough.
The Monday and Tuesday before Thanksgiving break are usually days where not much is covered in class because the teachers are just as antsy as the students to leave Greencastle. Papers may be due and then discussed, attempts at having an engaging lesson may be tried, but both the students and teachers know that it is useless. People's minds are not focused on what is being taught in the classroom, instead their thoughts are about the holiday ahead and all the other people who are already out of school and on vacation.
I believe having a week off of classes to honor the Thanksgiving holiday is fair, especially for those that have to travel. Where will these extra two days come from? Fall break, of course. I have never had a fall break before I came here, and so far I have been very grateful for the change because it is at a time in the semester where everyone needs a breather. Although I do think fall break is necessary, it might be a tad too long. Altogether, with the five days off from classes and the two weekends, fall break this year was nine days. Nine days off for no significant reason other than a break is a little ridiculous. Having those five days off during the Thanksgiving holiday would be more beneficial because it allows more time to be with family.
Since Thanksgiving is a national holiday, it just makes sense to have it as a longer holiday than fall break. Indiana University started a week-long break for its students this year. This is a smart decision because many students will be traveling over the break to visit family and if two of their days are spent traveling then they only have three days to kick back and relax.
Fall break is a relaxation period that usually only takes place within some school systems, so this means parents and most other schools do not have this time off. DePauw University should switch the amount of days that we have off for fall break with the amount of days we have off for Thanksgiving break. This alteration in our school calendar would make students, teachers and their families happy. The extra two school days would give family more time to spend together during the holiday season as opposed to how they are being used during the fall break, vegging out in front of the TV. Days are more valuable during Thanksgiving break since students enjoy a holiday and spend time with family, therefore, days from the nine days of fall break should be taken and added to the five days of Thanksgiving break.

-Ryan Konicek is sophomore from Geneva, Ill., majoring in sociology and education.

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