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EDITORIAL: Students Seize the Summertime

Published: Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Updated: Wednesday, April 25, 2012 01:04

As the sun-drenched days of the semester bring our academic year to a close, The Ram would like to take a moment to reflect on the opportunity that summer vacation provides young, independent students to absorb and reflect on the Jesuit teachings and values ingrained during the busy year.

A key point of the Jesuit philosophy is cura personalis — care of the whole person. Although Fordham students are told to take care of their minds, bodies and souls, the stress of the academic year inevitably takes its toll and ends in late-night Pugsley’s and stressful study sessions.

While not many Fordham students experience summer vacation in the idyllic manner of children playing at dusk, there are still plenty of chances for us to ruminate on the lessons of the year and develop our passions. Students stuck in a perpetual “work (and study) to live” mindset, however,  often miss out on countless opportunities to expand their awareness and understanding of the world outside of the classroom. When we are completely absorbed with building our futures, it is easy to let the present pass us by.

Many undergraduates take on summer employment or internships as a chance to expand their résumés while learning a little more about a chosen industry. While these jobs often involve scanning and getting coffee for superiors, we are lucky enough to be in a position of endless opportunity during an extremely difficult economic time in America.

For the students not lucky enough to find professional placement in “the real world” during the next three months, travel presents an unquantifiable life experience.

Whether taking the opportunity to hop a train across Europe while attempting to survive merely on Euros a day (otherwise known as the impossible), or just taking the car upstate to spend a day at a national park, traveling provides the opportunity for self-reflection and quiet time that does not often happen in the chaos and clutter of New York City.

We at The Ram hope that our peers take this summer as a chance to step back and assess our many opportunities. A summer at home provides the chance to catch up with old friends and spend quality time relaxing with family. An internship or job in a new city creates the opportunity to explore while expanding horizons.

Overall, summer is the time to step outside of our eight-month routine and contextualize what we are taught here at Fordham.

Appreciating the finer things in life, like the boundless creative individuality of New York City in summer, is also in line with our Jesuit values. Cura personalis is one reason why we should develop all aspects of our person. Frankly, it is genuinely good for our spirit to step back and breathe it all in.  

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