As you may have picked up from a few other blog posts, Intersession is the three week period between winter break and spring semester, during which students can take optional classes for a pass/fail grade. Students can also come back to Hop without planning on taking classes — some of my friends are doing research, working on extracurricular activities, or just relaxing.
Since returning to Hopkins, I’ve gotten the chance to focus on things that interest me in a low-stress environment. I’m stage managing Witness Theater’s Intersession Show, which opens February 16th. I get to spend roughly eight hours a week in rehearsals, helping student-written and -directed plays come together. It’s fascinating to watch my friends create such beautiful art.
I’m also taking a class called Science Fiction and the Radical Imagination, an exploration of capitalism, race, and gender through my favorite genre of literature. The course has pushed me to do a lot of reading, and the books and articles aren’t things I would have come across on my own, but I enjoy them immensely. Our in-class discussions are both informal and informative — I never feel stressed about saying the right thing, because I don’t have to worry about my grade in the class. Instead, I’m free to focus on aspects of the discussion that interest me and that I can relate to personally.
These three weeks have reminded me that I can engage with Hopkins in ways that aren’t necessarily academic. I learn here, yes, but I also live here. It feels good to have free time, and to spend it with this community. I’ve met so many new people and deepened my existing friendships — spontaneous coffee shop dates, laughing in rehearsals until our sides hurt, or watching old Disney movies in my dorm’s common room until late night becomes early morning. I love this place, I love these people, and I love Intersession.