POUGHKEEPSIE, NY- Fall Break, for the most part is the first time Marist College freshman get to return to their hometown since leaving in August. Some are excited to be home with their family, to see their high school friends, to sleep in their own room, to have home cooking for the first time in two months. Others are not as excited to go home with chores and parental rules looming, some students love the new freedom they were given that one night in late August. As a senior now, going home does not have the same feel as it did that first time coming home freshman year. However, every freshman has expectations of what is going to happen and for the most part expectations and reality rarely match up. Sometimes the time that freshman think they are going to get on their break is not theirs to use, stuck going to various family gatherings instead of hanging out with friends. To write this article and to get the reaction that I need I have enlist the help of four freshman (two males and two females) to give me their expectations of their weekend and then reality they ran into.
Robert is a freshman from Connecticut and he is excited to be going home. Robert is looking forward to sleeping in his own bed, eating a home cooked meal, seeing his family and friends, and more importantly to drive. Since coming to Marist, Robert has yet to drive and has felt a little confined to Marist Campus and now coming home he will have the freedom to drive wherever he pleases. He is also interested in seeing how his friends have changed, some of his friends have left for school and some have not. He knows that his friends that stayed home probably have not changed that much, but he is excited to see how his friends who have gone away have changed.
Tim is a freshman from New Jersey and he was most excited to relax. He said since he made it to Marist everything has been a whirlwind, especially after his first ever midterm week. He is looking to unwinding and relaxing for a couple of days. Like Robert, he is looking forward to seeing his family, friends, and of course his dog. He also made a comment about how he is excited to use his own bathroom, claiming that a couple of days away from the communal showers/bathrooms is all right with him.
Megan is a freshman from New York specifically Long Island, and like the other she is excited to see her family, but sadly her friends will not be home. She also made it a point to say she was not going go back to her high school, something that most college freshman do on their first trip home. She is very happy to go home to see her cats and use her personal shower as she, like Tim, cannot wait to get away from the communal showers.
Rachel is a freshman from New Jersey, and like the rest of the group of the freshman she is excited to see her parents and to get away from the communal showers but unlike the others freshman she is looking forward to sleeping in. Because of her and her roommate’s schedule it is hard for her to sleep late into the day, so she is very excited to sleep in for the first time in a while. She is excited to she her extended family as well, and because of fall break she will be able to attend her cousin’s wedding.
Like expectations sometimes they never come to fruition, for the most part they are never reality. Students believe that their parents will be more lenient with them or maybe their friends will be a little different from their travels to college. Anyway you look at it, expectations and reality rarely match up. Many freshman believe that their time away from home has matured them and some even forget how it feels to live with their parents. After their weekend at home, I spoke with the students again to gage how their expectations went with their reality.
Robert’s weekend was similar to what he thought it would be. He got to sleep in his own bed, eat in his words real food, have a clean bathroom, see friends, family, and his pets. He did spend more time doing homework than he thought he was going to do, which he was not happy with. However, he did do a few things that he didn’t think he was going to do, like go visit old coaches and teachers at his high school. Overall he stated that his first break from college was great.
Tim told me that he had an overall good weekend. It was not his first time home so the feeling was not the same as the first time. He came home Thursday night, and when he got home he just relaxed. His parents took him out for dinner and together they watched football. The other days of the his break were used to see his cousins and grandparents. He told me that he had a good weekend, and he was happy to be able to relax and just enjoy the little things, like his bed and his own personal shower. Being in college makes you miss those little things.
The things she expected to appreciate while at home lived up to expectations; having her own bathroom and home cooked food were a couple of the things she was very happy with. She was surprised that her parents did not ask her to do any chores, which was something she thought she was going to have to do. She was surprised about the leniency of her parents for her first time being back from school. She was very happy with her family dinner at her Grandparents’ house, which she called the highlight of her weekend. She excited to see her extended family which was one of the main reason she was happy to go home.
For Rachel, her fall break met her expectations in some aspects, and fell short in others. She did get to see many of her family and because of the break she was able to attend her cousin’s wedding on Friday, which was her favorite part of her short break. She also was able to see her best friend Liz who was home with the same break as her. She was able to eat a delicious home-cooked meal with her family and she got to see her brother, who is also away at school. Overall, she told me that her break was enjoyable, but felt more like a weekend home than a true “break.”
Fall break is a great time for freshman, they get to go home and relax, see friends and family, eat home cooked meals, sleep in their own beds, use their own personal bathroom, so on and so forth. This group of freshman for the most part were not surprised about how their weekend ended up. With a couple of things going not as planned, but like what was stated earlier, expectations and reality rarely match up. However, I believe these freshman started to appreciate home a little more after their first break and in some ways they start to appreciate being at school a little more as well.