NSCAD initiates Fall Study Break
October 26, 2015

For university students, late October is a high-stress time of the year. After the excitement of a new academic year wanes, it gets busy, busy, busy.

There are midterms to study for, essays to write, and major projects to get underway. Open 24 hours, NSCAD’s studios are occupied night and day.

Recognizing that students need a few days to catch up and regroup, NSCAD University has initiated the Fall Study Break. The three-day reprieve happens Monday, Oct. 26, Tuesday, Oct. 27 and Wednesday, Oct. 28.

“The idea is to have a little break between modules (in Foundation year) and at mid-term,” says Christina Warren, manager of Financial Aid and Student Counselling. “Students have been flat out for most of the month, and it’s to provide a bit of decompression, just a pause so students can collectively take a breath.”

Pilot project

The Fall Study Break is being initiated at NSCAD as a pilot.  Other schools in Canada, including the University of Toronto, Ryerson University and University of Guelph to name a few, have instituted a fall break, although the idea is still pretty novel in the Atlantic Region. Saint Mary’s University’s break consists of two days, Nov. 12 and Nov. 13, falling right after Remembrance Day to create an extra long weekend. Dalhousie’s Fall Break day is Nov. 12.

“A break from normal classes is much appreciated during the deep dark winter but it can also be used when the weather is pleasant!” says SUNSCAD President Gabriel Soligo. NSCAD’s Winter Study break takes place from February 16 to 19, 2016.

At this busy time of the academic year, extra supports for students are available. NSCAD’s peer mentors are available to speak to every weekday from 6 to 8 pm; students can drop in without an appointment to Room G227 on the Fountain Campus. As well, psychologist Dr. Maureen Gorman is available to NSCAD students for counselling. Students can make an appointment with her (call 902-441-1292) on Fridays at NSCAD or through the week at her Dartmouth office.

“We are always looking for ways to support our students,” says Ann-Barbara Graff, VP (Academic and Research).  We are hopeful that they will take full advantage of a Fall Study Break and the resources available on campus, so that it will become a regular part of the NSCAD academic calendar.”

Students in a Foundation class led by Anna Sprague will spend their Fall Study Break at Fortress Louisbourg--part of an innovative collaboration between NSCAD and Parks Canada.