Graduate Blog / Graduate Life

How I Spent My Semester Break: Prediction vs Reality

Here at Babson, we are just getting back into the swing of things after a much-needed and much-deserved month-long break between semesters, which included the Holiday season.  Instead of boring my readers with a full breakdown of the prior semester including favorite classes, what I learned about financial valuation, and a lengthy discussion on the principles of financial accounting, I figured I could provide something a little lighter: a much shorter breakdown on how I assumed I would spend my time off, and how I actually spent my time off.  Without further adieu, here we go:

Prediction #1:  Take some time to seriously reflect upon what I learned in the previous semester, and how these fundamentals and frameworks can be utilized going forward in real-life professional situations.

Reality #1:   My brain completely turned off the second finals were over – it was mush.  That being said, I still think I’m in much better shape than before school – I can’t look at something I’m buying without thinking about the potential profit margin on the item, and I find myself analyzing the net present value of potential “investments” (being a broke grad student, I’ll use the word “investments” broadly).

Prediction #2: Continue to be productive with any free time I have – research companies I’d like to work for, further work to increase my network, and prepare cover letters for summer internships which I likely won’t have time to prepare when I’m back in “school-mode.”

Reality #2: For the first week of break, I definitely had issues sitting around for periods of 15 minutes without doing anything – I literally had this feeling of guilt in my stomach.  Let’s just say that feeling subsided a little more quickly than I wanted it to…

Prediction #3: Use the extra time off to finally catch up on reading those books I wanted to over the past few months (reading for leisure! It happens!).

New Dennis Lehane!

New Dennis Lehane!

Reality #3:  I couldn’t do it.  I just couldn’t read another thing.  The only item in my hands were a remote control, cold beverage, and between the hours of 12-1 pm and 7-8 pm daily, whatever terribly unhealthy food was within Remotereach (No – there was no breakfast – most days I woke up too late).

Prediction #4: Finally get back into exercising after somewhat of a frustrating temporary hiatus during 1st semester.

Reality #4: See Reality #2 above.

Prediction #5: “Recharge the batteries,” as they say – get away from the cold, take a week off on some small island in the Caribbean, and have a drink or two while getting a nice sunburn tan.

Reality #5: -I worked at my old job 1 or 2 days a week to get some extra money, had the pleasure of looking at each and every one of my classmates (so it seemed…don’t bother arguing otherwise) taking a week (or two) off on some small island in the Caribbean, while never leaving the frozen tundra of New England.

So that about sums up my semester break experience.  Although I didn’t accomplish nearly as much as I had planned, in hindsight, I’m actually not sure I would have changed that much about it.  It was a much-welcomed break from the intensity of the Babson MBA program.

How did others spend their school breaks?  Was anyone more productive than I was? Where did YOU go over break?