Holidays are holy to students because no school work, no project and no teachers can take them away from their right to enjoy the valuable period of freedom. When you enter the university, you will realize that holidays seem to be even longer than before. The universities in Singapore adopt a similar schedule for holidays, with the summer holidays falling from May to August and the end-of-year holidays falling from December to January. You may be wondering why universities have longer holidays when students are supposed to be busier? You will find out the answer as you read on, along with the tips on how to best spend your holidays.
Travel around the world
Probably the most popular first way of spending holidays is traveling. Of course, given the size of Singapore, traveling from Changi to Joo Koon isn’t so much fun. The best is to travel overseas to a foreign place that you or your family has been wishing to visit. Other than conventional way of traveling, there has been many interesting ways of spending your time oversea. Backpacking is popular among young people who want to adventure into lesser known places, such as forests, mountains or deserts, without the help and arrangement of a travel agency. There have been reports of Singaporeans who put themselves in danger due to adverse circumstance. Do your homework of the place you want to go, get professional equipment if necessary, learn some fast life-saving techniques and where possible, always get a local guide.
Finding a hobby and more
Other than traveling, holidays give you the luxury of time to pursue something that you otherwise would not have the chance to do. Given the busy school life faced by students in Singapore, many students are driven by assignments, tasks or deadlines in school. However, you can truly own your time in your holidays. You probably want to develop a new hobby or you may want to do some self-improvement in certain areas. Holidays give you the uninterrupted schedule to do so. For example, there are many summer classes catering to specific interests, such as performing arts, language and many others. Three months of summer holidays are enough for mastery of almost anything, as long as you learn it consistently. One point to note is that in your pre-U institution, you may spend time during your holidays preparing for the next semester’s study or revising the last semester’s content. But such a strategy is less applicable to university study, as you clear modules per semester and there isn’t a lot of continuity between semesters. But you can definitely spend time catching up with some foundation knowledge that will be used in subsequent study.
Start early in your career?
Now we come to the last possible way you can spend your holidays: work or internship. The three-month duration of summer holidays make sense to you once you realize that many formal internship programs run for ten weeks, which fit into the holiday schedule nicely. By giving such summer holidays, the universities are sending the implicit message that probably you should find yourself an internship before you graduate. Having done an internship gives you various benefits.
- It exposes you to the real working world and mentally prepares you for a challenging career ahead.
- It is also a huge boost to your experiences that prove to be valuable when you are applying for a full-time job.
- Many companies like to recruit full -time employees from their pool of interns, so as to reduce the cost of recruitment. Hence an internship can be an expressway to finding a job in the future.
Other than formal internship, you may also want to source for short term part time job or voluntary work. They are different platforms by which you can gain exposure to the world beyond universities. For information on the job opportunities in Singapore, you can go to Gradconnection, Jobcentral and your university’s own career site.
Holidays is a time for fun. And it is much more than that. It is also a time of exploration, a time for self-improvement and personal growth. Lastly, just remember what the ancient romans said, “carpe diem” (seize the day)!