I just can’t get enough of freshman year. Even my advisor looked at me like I was Fluffy from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone when I said I would be back for all three weeks of Intersession.
“Don’t you want a break?” he asked.
I had decided long ago in October that I would be back for Intersession when I looked at the giant five-week-long winter break and realized that I would be incapable of sitting still for that long. It’s not like I wouldn’t have had anything to do, but the prospect of having no real goals over a period of time that long just felt wrong to me. After two weeks of visiting high school friends, indulging in an appropriate amount of New York pizza, and making my last angsty teenage choice (I got my nose pierced), I packed my suitcase and headed back down to Baltimore to move out of Peabody and into my new dorm at Homewood. (Decorating 2.0, am I right?) By the way, living in McCoy as a freshman is almost like living in a hotel.
After taking the obligatory post-move-in Target trip with my family and having dinner at Paper Moon Diner, I was on my own again. One thing about going to college that has been absolutely addictive is the independence. My choices are really my own, and Intersession allows me to make a whole lot more of them.
The classes I decided to take are called Cancer and Immunology, and The Roaring Sixties: France’s Latest Revolution in Moving Images. I honestly don’t think I could have picked two better classes.
Since Cancer and Immunology meets at 8:30AM, it’s pretty clear that the people in that class are really there because they want to be. It truly feels like learning for the sake of learning. I chose the class hoping to get more of a biology-like perspective on a field in which I am extremely interested, and I have not been disappointed.
I chose the French film class because I’m a huge French nerd, and high school French focused so much on language and not enough on culture. In this class, we’re watching movies from the early sixties, an influential time in French film known as La Nouvelle Vague, or The New Wave. It is a highly discussion based class and it has been a great way to spend some of my weekday afternoons. I’ve even been contemplating a French minor, but I won’t get too ahead of myself for now.
The workload is light, most of the classes are graded satisfactory/unsatisfactory, and I still have loads of free time. I’ve had some of my high school friends visit, and I went on a weekend trip to visit one of my friends from home at the University of Delaware.
I also had Afghani food when I went to The Helmand for dinner for the first time (highly, highly recommend), visited the Baltimore Museum of Art, and went bouldering in the cave in the Rec Center yesterday. I’ve gotten a head start on a chemistry assignment for the spring term and I still have tons of other plans. I’m hoping to get Belay certified so I can try out the rock wall in the gym, and I’m going to Washington D.C. to see a Dr. Dog concert with my friend Cynthia on the 23rd.
Intersession also provides a great opportunity to explore campus, and all of the fun and quirky things that Baltimore has to offer. I can honestly say that I think I made an excellent choice for me. Some people can spend endless time relaxing, but I’ve never been that way. Having a class or two a day provides me with just enough structure that I don’t feel bored, and leaves me plenty of free time to see my friends and relax. It’s all of the fun of college with none of the stress, and I’ve had plenty of time to ease back in to the Hopkins environment. With Intersession nearly half over, I know that I’ll be ready to take on the spring semester with fresh eyes, a bit more organization, and much more enthusiasm.