Why does the argument made in this article seem so obvious to me? Some of the best educational experiences I’ve had in my life resulted from travel, with or without family. I’m not sure why or how this could be considered a trend. As far as I’m concerned, stretching outside of personal comfort zones (i.e. routine) is one of the primary reasons to take a vacation.
I loved my childhood travel experiences so much that I sought every opportunity for study travel while at Michigan State University. When I use the term study travel, I’m not talking exclusively about formal study abroad opportunities, wonderful as they are. In my personal experience, I also include alternative spring break opportunities, as well as formal internships and co-ops.
I am particularly glad that the article included a discussion of opportunities to volunteer during a family vacation. I find it analogous to my alternative spring break experiences at Michigan State. Quite simply, they were wonderful. As a group, we worked hard during the day volunteering at various locations, including schools, orphanages, etc. During the evening we experienced the best that our locations, Merida and Puebla, Mexico in my case, had to offer. The volunteer work fostered a bond that simple spring break partying could never match. I treasure those memories and would recommend the programs to anyone. The family vacations I loved as a child gave me the courage to seek out new travel opportunities as an adult.
Ultimately it made it easier for me to seek paying internship and co-op opportunities far from home. I spent a summer interning at IBM in Rochester, Minnesota right after the technology bubble burst, and I was fortunate to live and work in Austin, Texas for six months through a co-op with Applied Materials. Given my background, I doubt I would have taken advantage of those opportunities without those earlier experiences of family vacations.
I grew up in Michigan’s smallest city, Omer, Michigan. Most of my family lived and continues to live in Michigan. I attended the same schools my entire childhood, all in the same school district, of course. I even lived in the same house for most of my childhood. I needed change and new opportunities. I am so glad that my parents realized that. Their foresight opened my eyes to the opportunities open to me later in life. For that I am truly grateful!
- Can you take a vacation from social media? (lindsaynball.com)