For many students, spring break supposedly promises trips to warmer climates, time spent at home with family or simply a chance to recharge from academic pressure. As the word “break” suggests, students look forward to enjoying a week off from the high intensity Amherst workload and lifestyle. However, most students found themselves swamped during what ended up being a week away from school with the same amount of work, and many students even opted to stay on campus to catch up on work.

Last weekend, posters mysteriously appeared around campus. Although not officially affiliated with the movement, the writer of the poster printed the Amherst Uprising logo at the top and began the message with the accusatory question,“Where have you gone Amherst Uprising???” followed by a sarcastic “Congratulations!!!” At first glance, the poster seems to suggest that students bring back the Amherst Uprising movement more publicly, but the poster’s actual language instead diminishes the work participants of Amherst Uprising have put into the movement.

With variance in national holidays, school-wide events and commencement programming, the college’s academic calendar changes on a yearly basis. The length of each semester has always remained consistent — 13 weeks in the fall and 14 weeks in the spring — but it could be changed in the near future. College Council recently proposed shortening the spring semester to 13 weeks, for reasons such as aligning the college on a similar calendar with other elite institutions and allowing for consistency within the structure of interterm.

The perpetual problems of loneliness and social division among Amherst students have been discussed extensively in recent years. As administrators seek new ways to resolve these critical issues, it seems that housing is the first aspect of Amherst life that they turn to. They’ve proposed Neighborhoods. They’re tearing down the social dorms. And now, they are overhauling the room draw process. Some of the changes are undoubtedly positive: We appreciate that Res Life has decided to streamline the process and minimize errors by moving room draw online.

The career center is always bustling with visitors, and our email inboxes are constantly flooded with career-related information. It’s common to catch a glimpse of students dressing in suits for interviews and attending informational sessions in between meals, practices and homework. It’s the height of internship and job-hunting season. In recent years the career center’s ample resources for business and health students have gotten even better, and students who wish to go into these fields have a robust array of mentoring opportunities and recruiting events to choose from.

Fear is not generally a part of Amherst students’ philosophy of education. We often hear that we’re supposed t o feel uncomfortable with our education — that’s how we know we’re learning.

We come to Amherst because we want push ourselves beyond our own self-created intellectual boundaries. Why, then, are Amherst students so afraid to challenge themselves in the classroom?

Here’s something hard to argue with: political discussions are a net good. Through debates, people voice their opinions against dissenters, gain new perspectives and even strengthen and clarify their own positions. Especially on a liberal arts college campus like Amherst, where we are taught to challenge our personal convictions and conceptions of the world, debating the most pressing issues of fiscal and social politics is key.

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