The University of Delaware’s Winter Session provides opportunities for students during January and February. The deadline to apply for many Winter Session study abroad programs is right around the corner – April 20 – and you may be wondering whether Winter Session is for you.
We surveyed a group of Lerner College students who participated in 2019 Winter Session courses both on campus and abroad, and they shared their thoughts, experiences and advice for students considering the Winter Session. Read on for their top 10 reasons why Winter Session was the right choice for them:
- Those extra credits will put you ahead.
“Winter semester is an incredible opportunity to get ahead in your classes and satisfy class requirements that you won’t have to worry about later through a full semester,” said junior sport management major Andres Castillo. Completing a course in five weeks instead of 12 can make your schedule much more flexible.
“More students should take advantage of Winter Session, as it puts you ahead in terms of credits,” agreed finance major Jesse Alba.
- Winter Session credits may even enable you to graduate early!
Many UD students have used Winter Session courses to help them graduate early, saving time and money. Alba, for example, said he’ll be able to graduate a semester early thanks to Winter Session courses.
Miranda O’Donald, a sport management major, added that Winter Session “will allow me to graduate a whole year early!”
- Taking just one or two classes at a time helps you to really focus and build your skills.
Financial planning and wealth management major Jordan Battee said that Winter Session enabled him to focus on a more challenging class without having to worry about four other classes at the same time. “It’s a really good way to take a hard class and be able to perform better in it,” he said.
Castillo added that Winter Session “strengthens your time management and study skills because you are forced to make the best of your free time and to retain the information in a much more accelerated time frame, so it helps you become a better student.”
- Class sizes are often smaller.
“I loved my professor and the smaller class size,” O’Donald said. These smaller groups can help you to get helpful individual attention and build relationships with your classmates.
- Campus is less crowded!
Winter is a quieter time on UD campus. Many students enjoy the more relaxed campus atmosphere during this time. This also means you can take advantage of the same classes without the long lines at Trabant and Smithbucks!
- Studying abroad during winter is a great way to travel the world.
“I really just wanted to get a cultural experience in a different country while getting classes that were relevant to my majors,” said accounting and finance major Megan Wagner, who studied abroad in London and Dublin over the winter. “I made a lot of really good friends and got so much cultural experiences that I never would have otherwise gotten.”
“I wanted to experience a lengthened trip abroad and to immerse myself in a different culture,” added finance major Matthew Lochstoer. “The balance between school work and travel time was outstanding. I thought we had a pretty busy schedule with schoolwork, but we also had plenty of time to go out on our own and explore.”
- Winter study abroad programs provide fantastic opportunities without the same time commitments as semester-long programs.
For Winter Session study abroad programs, “It’s not necessary to make a long-term commitment to studying abroad,” according the UD’s Institute for Global Studies. “About 90% of students who participate in UD’s programs are abroad for just four or five weeks.”
“I knew that I didn’t want to be away for a full semester, so it was perfect to have the Winter option!,” said marketing and operations management major Emily Williamson, who studied abroad in Thailand and Australia. During her time abroad, she said, “I was taught real world experiences and how to apply studying skills to personal interactions. I was given opportunities to really talk to and network with a variety of important employees and I now feel much more confident in doing so.”
- You’ll keep your fall semester momentum going through the winter.
Alba said that when it comes to Winter Session, “I would encourage every student to do so, if for no other reason than to keep yourself occupied and motivated during our extended winter break. It is also a great way to get ahead of your peers in terms of credits which can allow you to register for classes early, among other things.”
- If you’re a student athlete, you’ll be able to participate in winter workouts while getting ahead academically.
Castillo, who plays football for UD, said that Winter Session fit in with his plans to be part of on-campus workouts throughout the winter. He was even able to participate in a one-week internship with the Senior Bowl college football all-star game, which satisfied an additional internship requirement for his major.
“I was able to advance my professional career by creating new connections through the internship, while completing a class that I need for my major,” he said. “It was challenging but it was so worth it.”
- You’ll make the most of your years at UD!
“I would advise anyone and everyone to take Winter Session, given they have the opportunity to do so,” Lochstoer said. “It is a good way to earn extra credits and a fantastic way to spend your winter term.”
Wagner added that students should, “definitely apply to anything that you are interested in because it is an incredible experience!”