Spring break is a long-honored college tradition, including in The Collegian archives.
On March 14, 1985, The Collegian ran an article titled, “Spring break mania hits the Dale.” Reporter Lisa LeMoal wrote, “With cries of ‘I’ve got to lose 10 lbs!’ And ‘I need $200 NOW!’, one can be sure that Hillsdale’s spring break is rapidly approaching.”
I’ll be honest, I have cried more about midterms than either of these issues, but I guess I can understand these students’ pain.
LeMoal continued, “While popular spring break paradise seems to be Florida, students also are choosing more unusual places. For example, seniors Bridget Bowden and Margie Jacobs are dashing off to the Bahamas while sophomores Bob Philips and Rob Warner are spending the week in Europe.”
However, according to LeMoal, choosing a spring break location is only half the battle.
She wrote, “Once you’ve decided where you’re going, how you’re going to get there, and who’s going to pay for it, your worries aren’t over yet. Senior Linda Mancuso and junior Christa Beardsley explained, ‘Our biggest fright is that we won’t get tan because we’ll spend too much time at Penrod’s drinking 25 cent drafts during happy hour!’”
Between the exorbitant prices and unavoidable nature of this problem, I can’t help but share in the girls’ devastation.
LeMoal ends her article with this warning: “Professors also don’t want you to come back with sand between the pages of your text; it causes an absolute mess in the classroom.”
One year later, The Collegian echoed the spring break ideas presented by LeMoal and published an article titled, “Forget Those Books! Tan Preservation Ranks First” on April 3, 1986.
All these spring break opportunities can be credited to a group of students who petitioned to extend spring break in 1971.
A March 24, 1971, Collegian article read, “Hillsdale College recently approved a recommendation that spring break be extended. The extra day should be attributed to the efforts of Bob Nusholtz and Bob Anton, who saw a necessity for change in the calendar and acted upon it. Their action demonstrated how concerned students, working through the right channels, can accomplish felt changes.”
I have never felt so inspired in my life. I’m about to start a petition to add these two characters to the Liberty Walk up the hill.
The Collegian describes how Nusholtz and Anton accomplished this victory: “On Wednesday, March 3, both Nusholtz and Anton went to Dean Hendee and asked how a change of dates could be implemented. The Dean ‘suggested the possibility of a petition’, which the two students then drew up.”
The article continues, “By Monday afternoon when the petitions were handed into Dean Munn’s office, 526 signatures had been obtained.”
The Collegian reported, “Reaction by the student body was on the whole, very favorable.”
In other news, the sky is still blue.
In addition to giving a history of Hillsdale spring breaks, The Collegian also offered advice for spring breakers.
On March 23, 1978, The Collegian read, “It would be 90% accurate to assume that if you are reading this article you are not planning to spend your Spring Break in Florida. You are probably getting psyched to sit around the house and do absolutely nothing.”
This is stunningly accurate 40 years later.
The author offers several interesting ways to avoid wasting the time at home.
“Sew on buttons, wash sweaters and get winter clothes ready for retirement.”
As exciting as this sounds, I will probably stick to another classic suggestion: “Write postcards from your town, the ‘Greetings from Podunk’ type to all your friends in Florida.”
As the campus departs, we can only hope to have spring breaks that will make it into the newspaper for future generations to read.