Summer has finally come, and the students at Weber State University are gearing up for a new season of fun in the sun — but how much fun do students really have time for after they’ve exhausted themselves with studying and working?
Alysha Sutton, a sorority president on campus, said she enjoys a wide range of summer activities, spending an estimated 12-14 hours a week on leisure. She spends the rest of her time working a full-time job and making plans for her sorority. She plans activities such as trips to Lagoon, parades, leadership-building and sisterhood-bonding retreats, and community service projects. She also attends every WSU orientation.
When asked if her duties at WSU interfered with her summer fun, Sutton said, “Sometimes, but luckily I’m not going to summer school.”
Many students taking full course loads during the summer have found time to relax and enjoy themselves as well.
“I’m starting to develop some time-management strategies, thanks to my First Year Experience course,” said full-time, nontraditional student Christi Yarrington.
Many nontraditional students experience not only the pressures of school, but also the responsibility of a job and a family. Yarrington said that, thanks to the knowledge she’s gained from her FYE class, she is able to enjoy activities such as swimming, going to Lagoon and spending time with her family. She is also able to put aside about 15 hours a week for leisure.
“It’s not just a balance between WSU and my family life,” Yarrington said. “It’s about making sure that everybody’s needs are met.”
Hanalee Hawkins, FYE instructor and Student Wellness adviser at WSU, stressed the importance of physical activity during the summer. She said she enjoys many summer activities in her free time, including biking, tennis, swimming, running and hiking. For her, these things are not optional.
“My leisure activities are more like ‘must-dos’ in my life, ” Hawkins said. “It’s not really like a hobby that I enjoy doing, but something required for a healthy lifestyle.”
Hawkins said her true leisure activities are going to movies in the evenings, barbecuing and reading outside. After all is said and done, she spends a mere 3-5 hours per week on leisure. Though this might seem like very little time devoted to fun, especially in comparison to some other WSU students, she said she does not let her job at WSU get in the way of enjoying herself.
“I have a job; I’m committed to my job,” she said. “That’s life.”
Many students might find it difficult to balance schoolwork with pleasure, but learning time-management skills can help them find the time for both relaxing and participating in healthy summer activities.
“I truly believe everyone needs rejuvenating activities weekly, if not daily,” Hawkins said.