It’s the end of term, and whether you’re in your first, second or third year, you’re probably ready for a rest. You’re literally driving home for Christmas (or the Christmas holidays, depending on how you celebrate/not), but while it’s definitely time to relax for a bit, having a plan will help you to return to university next term feeling up to speed and ready to go. Here are a few key things to think about on that student holiday checklist.
Before leaving university for student holidays
Return library books
While much is now done online, lots of research is still done from library books. You don’t want to incur fines for having them over the holidays when you’re not supposed to, so make sure you return the ones you don’t need and have renewed the ones you do. If you’re taking books away for the holidays, make sure you know when they need to be back by and make a note in your phone or diary.
Check you’ve got what you need
Following on from our first point, make sure you have all the books or access to online material that you need to do any studying over the holidays. It would be a real nuisance to return to uni and already be behind on your assignments!
Double check your workload for student holidays
Double check that you know what you’re supposed to be doing and when by. Do you know which essays you need to write and books you need to read? It might sound obvious, but it’s easy to get swept up in the holiday festivities.
Tidy your digs
Clear out the fridge, wash the sheets, maybe even throw a hoover around the room for good measure. Leave your room/house the way you would like to find it when you get back, so you don’t come back to dirty dishes or chores to do.
Consider your packing
Take home all your valuables or make sure they’re locked away securely, and use this as an opportunity to take home anything you won’t need next term. Did you arrive in summer clothes in the balmy September weather? You’re probably not going to need them in January, so it’s a good time to clear a little space and prevent clutter.
While you’re home on student holidays
Make a student holiday schedule
It might not be number one on your priority list during student holidays, but as it’s easy for time to fly when you’re having fun, make a schedule for any reading, essays and coursework. Hopefully that way it won’t all be left to a mad rush in the last few days of the holidays and it won’t become too overwhelming either!
Revisit your university notes
If you can make the time, why not read over your lecture notes from term. You don’t need to think about committing them to memory – just read them through to refresh your brain… unless you have an actual exam when you get back, in which case you should probably spend some time proactively revising!
Enjoy your down time during student holidays
For all the things you have to do for uni, make sure you spend some time with family and friends – that is what a student holiday is for after all.
Review your finances
Use the time to assess spending, work out what you need for the next term, and maybe earn some extra cash. The Christmas holidays are a great time to get a part time job, as lots of places employ seasonal staff for a few weeks and pay overtime on the bank holidays during sales periods. Perhaps there’s an old job you can return to for a few weeks in a shop or restaurant? Either way, it can help make next term a bit more comfortable.
Prepare for the next term
Towards the end of your break, take some time to stock up on the things you need, whether it’s bulk buying rice at Costco, getting new bed sheets or buying new ring binders. Of course you can always get these things at uni, but it’s better to start the term feeling fully prepared, rather than wait until you’re busy with classes again!
Most of all, enjoy the holidays – you deserve it!