Semester Comparisons

By: Mea Donnelly


It’s February.  The second semester of the school year is passing quickly. For seniors and juniors who graduate in three months, the realization that college doesn’t last forever is hitting full force, while freshmen are beginning to see how fast these four years truly go by.  The strange thing though is that as this semester gets going, it becomes easier to see how different first semester really is from the second.  Each has its pros and cons – and here they are!


Fall Semester




The fall semester begins slowly with UIUC’s ever-popular syllabus week.  Students have plenty of opportunities to go out and catch up with old friends.  After the first week, classes still slowly work their way into more homework, which gives the students enough time to realize that summer is truly over.  Quad Day lays out all the possible organizations for students to join and gives out opportunities to make the fall quite interesting.  The long-awaited Thanksgiving break finally makes its appearance, and then the semester ends a few week afterward.

Pros: Classes ease in the course load, good for those who like to get things over with, presents plenty of opportunities to get involved.

Cons: Very few breaks, mentally draining.


Spring Semester




“Oh don’t worry, syllabus week is the best,” says your friend the day before classes starts, and BAM – there’s already an essay due Wednesday and weekly quizzes to take.  The spring begins full force and is much faster-paced.  The RSO Fair takes place in the Union Ballroom, but because many clubs are year-round, students must wait to join.  Valentine’s Day pops up quickly, soon after is Unofficial, then it’s time for a much-needed spring break.  About four stressful weeks later, the semester comes to a close as warm weather finally takes over Illinois once again.

Pros: More breaks and holidays (read: Unofficial)

Cons: Extremely fast-paced, few RSOs to join, mentally draining at the end of the semester.

So there you have it UIUC, the fall and spring semesters compared side-by-side. Luckily for us, both semesters have some pretty good aspects, making UIUC a great place to be all year round.


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