UK students need a fall break


Kernel Opinion SIG

Amy Tesfayesus

By the time Thanksgiving rolls around, it seems like everyone is craving the comfort of a home where you don’t have to wear shoes and can get a home-cooked meal that you don’t have to make for yourself. The weekend before rolls around, and slowly but surely, campus becomes more and more deserted until almost all student traffic ceases by Wednesday morning.

Some students have the liberty of leaving as early as the Friday before Thanksgiving, but others must wait for that pesky Tuesday afternoon class that is still in session, docking the R&R time that’s supposed to come with Thanksgiving break and that, frankly, every student needs.

I’m all about understanding all sides to an argument, and this is one I truly cannot wrap my head around. There are so many problems with this schedule let’s discuss it.

I’m from Louisville and have the privilege of driving home for something as quick as a dinner with my family and returning hours later. I’ve had that annoying chemistry lab that has kept me in Lexington until Tuesday afternoon, but it’s not a huge deal to me as it is probably the 4th or 5th time I’ll go home a semester.

For thousands of students, this is not a reality.

That third of our student body doesn’t include the thousands of students from areas in Kentucky more than two hours away. Flights and drives are already expensive as is and cutting that short for the one or two classes that you can’t miss on that Monday and Tuesday, for lack of a better word, sucks.

For our students that have to fly, buying tickets earlier rather than later is ideal as far as ticket prices go. Many students will book their flights early in the semester planning either to skip class with the hopes that their professors will cancel so that they won’t lose points or attend class and pay the expensive price so that they can go be with their family for the short period of five days. Not to mention that some professors wait until the one or two weeks before to announce that class is optional or won’t be meeting, which leaves fliers staying in town for no reason because they weren’t able to predict such a late canceled class.

Then let’s consider the issue that it’s typically one or two classes that are the “problem” classes, because in general, many professors are understanding of travel.

Lastly, we don’t have a fall break here at UK and we should. That’s a whole other discussion, but as a school, can we really not spare those two days when it is completely in the best interest of the greater student body?

Professors have multiple choices here: Make those classes optional early in the semester (no attendance points lost for missing class), offer alternative deadlines, make quizzes available online or cancel class completely. Or UK should give us the full fall break we need by closing all week.