For many college students, summer means a time of relaxation. It’s time to reset, recharge, and take a break from classes. Some go on a summer vacation or back home to visit their family and friends while others decide to stay put and unwind.
However, one thing to consider is filling the time – or part of the time – with summer classes.
Here are some benefits of taking a summer session for you to consider:
1. You’ll usually graduate faster. Taking classes over the summer gives you the opportunity to earn more credits, which can bring you that much closer to graduation. If you don’t have anything else going on during the summer, why not use that time to be productive and work toward finishing your degree sooner?
2. More availability. While it’s true that course selections in general can be more limited during the summer, you may not have to fight your way into a spot for what is being offered. This means that even those highly coveted classes will have a lot more availability, which makes it much easier to take popular courses that are required for your degree.
3. Smaller classes. Popular courses during the spring and fall semesters usually mean jam-packed classrooms. This can make it difficult to get a good seat, pay attention to lectures, ask questions, and have one-on-one discussions with your professor. Because fewer students opt for summer sessions, it also often means smaller classes. Not having to fight for a parking spot is a pretty great perk, too!
4. Cheaper textbooks. Textbook prices might not be lower during the summer, but it could be easier to find used books. Most college students know that buying used textbooks can save them a bundle, but that’s the issue – most college students know it. That can make it difficult to find used textbooks at the college bookstore, especially for popular classes. It can even be hard to find them online, especially if you try to order them after the semester starts. Because fewer students attend the summer session, this means you won’t have to make a mad dash to the bookstore.
5. It can be a great time to take on classes you’re dreading. Summer sessions are much shorter than typical semesters, and you’ll often finish up in about half the time you would any other time during the year. This can be either a good or bad thing, depending on how you look at it. The shorter semester usually means the class will meet more often and/or class sessions will be longer than usual. For some students, it can be overwhelming to fit an entire semester’s worth of work into half the time. But if you’re up for the challenge, you’ll probably be happy you did it in the end. Before you know it, the session will be over, and you’ll be done with those courses.
6. The potential to study abroad. If you wanted to travel during the summer but you also like the idea of earning course credits, why not do both by studying abroad? Many study abroad programs take place during the summer, so depending on what your school offers, it could be your best opportunity. Studying abroad offers an experience like no other, and it may be something you want to seriously consider doing during your college career.
7. The opportunity to take on an internship. Similar to study abroad programs, many internship programs are offered during the summer. If you are lucky enough to land an internship, you can gain invaluable experience in the industry you want to work in, and sometimes even get paid for it. Although you might not technically be in a classroom or on campus during the summer, you might still be able to earn credits during summer session this way.
If you do decide to enroll in a summer session, you’ll need to think about how to pay for it. If you’ve already reached your annual federal student loan limit, you may have other options, such as taking out a private student loan. Check out College Ave Student Loans to see the different loan options available, and see how you can build a loan that fits your budget and your life.