Computers have a fantastically awful little switch called a reset button. Deviously simple, it quickly reboots your computer, even if you spent hours writing a paper and did not intend to push the button. But when your computer locks up and begins crashing, that same reset button is a lifesaver and gets you back to work in a few seconds.
Life doesn’t come with that same (in)convenient feature. Rarely do we get to start things over with a clean slate like we sometimes wish, but there are minor reboots thrown our way every so often.
The coming of spring is one such time. Just over a month ago, most of the previous senior class finished up their undergraduate work and began new lives. They have the chance to start over sans the baggage or issues they might have accrued in college. We will only get that chance every so often and for some people, their graduations will be the last truly fresh start they will have. Luckily, we do receive more soft resets than we might deserve, and we can be successful if we use them right.
Ups and downs in school are normal. We have weeks where we’re too busy to focus on all our classes and tests that we aren’t prepared for. We even suffer through entire semesters that we really wish we could just do over completely. The beauty of college is that we are never more than a few weeks away from that wish. A class that goes poorly taken during one semester can be worked into the next. While we don’t always want to retake a class, it is a chance to go back redo a mistake that was made. A break in the summer may sound attractive but it’s also a chance to hit the reset button for a clean start. Classes in the fall will be that much easier without a bad grade hanging over the head.
The situation also works in reverse. The momentum from a great spring semester can be decimated by a four month break. That untimely break can be just as bad as a rebooting computer that erases an unsaved essay. Rather than breaking away entirely and having to start fresh in the fall, working a couple classes in around a summer job can keep things moving. We earn a few extra credits, take less time to graduate, and manage to keep all our work fresh.
No matter how things went for us in spring, taking a summer class is a better idea than taking a break. A reset can wipe away some system errors but it can also wipe away necessary momentum. Heading into fall, everything will be running smoothly and earning our degrees will be that much easier.