Auburn University is offering three wellness days, breaks from classes on weekdays, throughout the semester as a replacement for its usual spring break. A few Auburn students offered feedback to The Plainsman on the previous wellness day on March 10, and they all said they had to spend their day working.
Zana Christjohn, sophomore in history and English literature, didn’t take the time to sleep in on her wellness day.
“Basically the nicest part of my day was that I slept in for an extra hour,” Christjohn said. “As soon as I got up, I quickly got ready for the day and then instantly started working. I worked until I ate a quick lunch with my sister, and then I packed my stuff up and left to go to a coffee shop to do three more hours of work.”
Christjohn said she “never work[s] less than eight hours a day” on her schoolwork, including class time. For her, this includes weekends and now wellness days.
She said both she and her friends felt the need for a break this semester.
“You’re not getting breaks on the weekends,” she said. “You’re working through your Saturdays and Sundays, and it’s like your brain is just constantly going. There’s not a break you can really build in yourself.”
Dylan Basden, sophomore in business management, said he used his wellness day as “more of a catch-up day than anything,” watching lectures for his online classes.
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Basden had the day off from five classes during the previous wellness day, on March 10.
“I don’t have classes on Tuesdays and Thursdays, so this is my ... only proper wellness day, and yet I still did schoolwork during it,” he said.
However, Basden said he understood the reasoning behind this semester’s schedule, especially with travel concerns.
“I understand why they did the wellness days, and actually I think it was retrospectively really smart to do it when they did it, especially the fact that they announced them way before people were getting their spring break plans,” Basden said. “Once it actually hit, it’s a little disappointing because we’re in a lot better place right now than we were when they announced it.”
Rachel Armstrong, senior in English literature, said she has worked at her job and worked on her schoolwork on both of her wellness days so far.
She mentioned that some of her friends also had to work on wellness days.
“It’s kind of weird because it’s just the University that’s like, ‘It’s a day off,’ but everywhere around us they’re like, ‘It’s a normal Tuesday,’” Armstrong said.
When asked to provide feedback on how they would choose to structure semester breaks, Christjohn and Armstrong both said they would prefer long weekends.
“I know the point of doing them in the middle of the week is so that people won’t travel, but I feel like if you did the wellness days either on a Monday or a Friday, they would definitely be more effective in giving people a break,” Armstrong said.
Basden said he “would recommend five wellness days back-to-back, like a week long.”
“But in all seriousness, I would add like two more days, that way we get the full five days that we were originally supposed to have,” he said.
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