The opportunity to rest, reset and relax had some Keene State College students eager to begin spring break despite their coronavirus concerns.
“When you’re doing something for a long period of time, you need some time to clear your head and restart yourself,” said Samantha Breault, a first-year at Keene State College.
The college’s spring break began March 13, and on March 23 students will resume classes online due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to an email sent by President Melinda Treadwell, students cannot return to campus if they have traveled outside of North America, have been on a cruise ship, have spent time in the New York City metropolis area, have been in the Seattle metropolis area or have been in Southern California. Treadwell also said that anyone who has traveled to a municipality that has announced active measures to limit community exposure or to a state with over 99 individuals who tested positive for COVID-19 cannot return.
Sophomore Jenna Porcello said she has been worried about the virus spreading into Keene and said she was greatly anticipating spring break.
“I think that all breaks are important, but with the virus going around, I think it’s important for everyone to get away and not be in an environment where we’re all forced to be together,” said Porcello.
Like Porcello, Brytni Simmons, a senior, said she plans to sleep in and relax. This is Simmons’ first spring break not working, so she plans to take day trips and catch up with her family and friends.
“It’s a good mental break and I think everyone has so much going on that the week is just a time to relax,” said Simmons.
As of March 11, Griffin Tighe, a first-year, said he had plans that COVID-19 had yet to cancel. He planned to attend a concert, watch a parade, and hang out with his friends throughout the week.
Looking on the optimistic side, Tighe said that the virus has caused all of his friends to be home at the same time and he is looking forward to seeing them. He also said that the week will motivate him to work hard until the end of the semester.
“That week gives me the boost I need to get through the next five weeks,” said Tighe.
Breaks from school can reduce overall stress for students and allow them to be more productive, according to Psychology Today. Chronic stress can contribute to illness and sleep deprivation, but it can also cause someone to become more irritable, depressed and anxious.
Due to consistently doing homework, attending classes and participating in extracurriculars, Porcello said she is exhausted by the time spring break comes each year. Break provides time for the body and mind to destress and is a healthy opportunity for students and professors.
“I have stuff going on in the morning, in the afternoon and at night. I need a break from that. We aren’t meant to go that long in a day,” said Porcello.
Kiana Joler can be contacted at