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Summer Reflections of an Intern

By the time you enter the 3rd grade, you know what summer is. It’s that time of year when you don’t have to go to school or do homework. Instead, you can just play all day with your friends, go on vacations, watch TV, or anything else you’d like to do. Summer is always a time of relaxation, an unwinding from all the busyness and tension of the school year—even at the age of 7. It’s exactly what summer should be—lazy and carefree. Summer break is a break for a reason, right?

However, once you reach a certain age, summers become less of a break and more of a time for résumé building. People don’t just go around doing nothing all summer anymore. They either go to summer school, work, find internships, volunteer, research, or find something equally interesting and impressive to write about on a piece of paper. What was once a carefree time is now one of the most pressured times of our lives. As this summer was beginning, I saw my peers scrambling around looking for things to do throughout the summer. If they couldn’t find anything, they settled down for taking classes at Emory to at least be productive.

Of course, I’m not one to talk. I mean, look at where I am now—interning at Shoap Technical Services. Although it’s rough to wake up early every morning (I never had 8 am classes), I like knowing I’m working towards something. It’s a totally different experience getting up early on a summer morning, taking the MARTA, and making my way into the office. Then once I get in the office, I’m left with various things to accomplish and do by the end of the day. A busy summer may not always be relaxing, but it’s definitely an interesting one.

The thing about a lazy summer and a productive summer is that they balance each other out. A lazy summer is a time of peace, reevaluation, and fun. It’s carefree and flexible, filled with some much needed R&R. It’s a time to take a break from the pressures of ordinary school life and prepare for the upcoming school year. However, there’s one fatal flaw. You can become so lazy that it becomes unhealthy. Doing nothing all day is actually more tiring than having a busy schedule. Sleep schedules become messed up, and people just enter a sloth-like state. The best way to combat this is a productive summer. With jobs to do or things to study, people never have to fear falling into the summer slump. Plus, these obligations never occupy all of our summer break time. Work and school both end, and there’s always time to do whatever you want afterwards. Naturally, sometimes you’re just too tired to do anything at all. You may not even enjoy your summer because of all the things you have to do. It might not even feel like a break, just an extension of the school year. In which case a lazy summer is just what you need to reenergize.

So what’s better? A productive or lazy summer?

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