By Emma Paradiso
For many students, the block schedule is a main part of the reason they chose to come to Colorado College. On tours of the school, the fun of spending a Block Break hiking, camping, and exploring is advertised to potential CC applicants.
While Block Break can be all fun and games, it can also be costly for students, and financial differences can prohibit people from attending a Block Break trip with friends. Additionally, some students who work on campus are required to work at least one Block Break a year, which further differentiates them from their peers who don’t need to work on campus.
“People are always talking about their Block Break plans,” said Virginia Thom ’20. “While at times this is fun, it can also really bring up some tough issues when not everyone can participate in a trip that you’ve planned with friends”. In this way, Block Breaks may be seen as perpetuating inequality on campus.
Access not only to financial means to travel, but also to a vehicle, can be additionally prohibitive to students who would like to participate in Block Break activities with their peers.
“When I was a first year, I spent more Block Breaks on campus than as an upper classman,” Fiona Whalen ’20 said. “Nobody had cars first year, which made it difficult to organize travel for Block Break.” Instead, Whalen said that her on-campus breaks were spent going out to eat, bowling, and re-decorating friends’ rooms.
While some may not have the financial means to travel over Block Break, others may just want to recharge after a hard block by spending time on campus. “Sometimes after a long block it can be great to spend time catching up on sleep,” said Alex Perutz ’21. “Traveling for Block Breaks can be fun, but it can also be exhausting.”
Sometimes, however, students may feel pressured to travel on Block Breaks even though they could really use the time to rest, recover, and prepare for the next block. “Going on Block Break trips is a huge part of being a CC student,” Perutz said. “I feel that I need to take advantage of my time here by exploring as much of the southwest as I can.”
But when students do spend their Block Breaks on campus, they may find themselves participating in group trips to the supermarket, movie nights, performances, and fun seasonal events like crafts or pumpkin picking. On the more outdoorsy side, there are also opportunities available to explore downtown Colorado Springs, hike in Cheyenne Mountain Canyon or Red Rocks Open Space, and visit Garden of the Gods.
As our first Block Break of the year rapidly approaches, many students are eagerly awaiting travel, while others can’t wait to play Spikeball on Yampa, hammock on the quad, or spend some quality time in their dorms. Regardless of whether they are able to travel or choose to remain on campus, there will be plenty of opportunities to make memories with their CC friends that will last a lifetime.