Make the most of your semester break with our guide to productivity, ensuring a well-rounded and enriching pause!
The relentless tick-tock of the clock and the vivid strike marks on my calendar remind me that time is passing. Releasing the pen after finishing my exhaustive law paper, a resounding internal chorus declares the arrival of the semester break.
Amid the possibilities, societal pressure emerges — finding the ‘right’ way to make the most of this time. Many students feel peer-pressured to secure internships, which seem to be everywhere. But does not having an internship make their efforts any less ‘right’?
I challenge this doubt. The truth, as I see it, is that there's no universally ‘right’ path. During this break, everyone sets their own goals, and some may adopt different approaches to better utilise their pause. Embracing this, I firmly believe that there are different ways to do so!
Did you know that the world of hobbies is as diverse as the colours on an artist's palette? Hobbies aren't merely random pastimes; they encompass enriching pursuits, sports and games, social activities, creative endeavours, and more. And why not venture beyond the norm for a moment? How about opting for obscure hobbies like wood carving, pottery, or even glassblowing?
Not to mention the bounty of benefits that come with adopting a new hobby. It's not just about passing the time; it's about unlocking doors to personal growth and development. The newfound skills and talents you acquire? They're like keys to unexplored realms within yourself. But that's not all! As you master your chosen pursuit, a sense of accomplishment blossoms within you. It's akin to reaching the peak of a mountain and taking in the breathtaking view. And here's the magic: that sense of achievement doesn't remain confined to your hobby corner; it spills over into the rest of your life. Suddenly, challenges seem slightly less daunting, and motivation becomes your trusty sidekick!
Absolutely no need to limit yourself to something directly related to your field or deemed ‘enriching.’ Your options are as vast as the universe of your interests. Have you ever thought about exploring part-time jobs? Job sites like LinkedIn, JobStreet, and Maukerja are gateways to these exciting work opportunities that align with your schedule.
Picture this: you're eager to dive into the world of sales and marketing down the road. What if I told you that, even as a student, you could step into the role of a sales advisor? It's a chance to dip your toes into the world you're drawn to, all while balancing your studies and other pursuits. The additional financial support is also a sweet bonus, especially for those wrestling with student loans and school fees. But hold up, there's more. Your resume is about to shine! A part-time job showcases you as dedicated and diligent, qualities that twinkle like stars. For all the seekers of experiences, your break is a canvas, and part-time work is your palette. Paint a vibrant story of growth, adaptation, and discovery. Embrace the process and see where it leads!
At Taylor's College, a collection of clubs and societies beckons — a treasure trove for your passions and interests. The available options cater to student affairs advocates, sports enthusiasts, community champions, cultural explorers, performing artists, and more. I walk this path too — having been formerly part of Taylor's College Student Council and now deeply engaged in Taylor's Lakeside Model United Nations. And guess what? Most clubs and societies that I've joined remain active during the semester break, organising events.
But why should you join clubs? Your participation isn't just about labels; they're platforms for experiences that set the stage for your campus life. Furthermore, skills blossom too; these clubs nurture talents and cultivate new ones. Your resume? It's a puzzle, and these clubs are the missing pieces, showcasing your dedication, teamwork, and time management — qualities an employer would admire. And there's more. These clubs aren't just about events; they're lifelines! When the going gets tough, you've got a crew that gets it. Challenges morph into stepping stones, and obstacles? They become chances to grow alongside empathetic friends. With that said, clubs and societies are about more than joining a group; they're about growth, connections, and embracing the journey!
Beyond the classroom, a tapestry of exciting opportunities unfolds, tailor-made for students — think competitions and programmes! These experiences aren't just about honing skills and knowledge; they're catalysts for personal growth, boosting confidence and character. Consider the Malaysian Institute for Debate and Public Speaking (MIDP), which hosts competitions from storytelling to debate and public speaking. This platform ignites passions and illuminates talents on national and international stages. Then there's Architects of Diversity, a beacon for justice, peace, and a sustainable future. They organise leadership camps like Sekolah Diversiti for high schoolers, where they can forge bonds, sharpen communication skills, and wield advocacy skills for inclusivity!
And here's the magic of participating in competitions or attending programmes during your semester break: triumph or simply taking part can herald accolades and recognition, solidifying your stature in your chosen realm. The spirit of competition becomes a driving force for self-improvement, propelling you to soar to greater heights. But it doesn't end there. Your journey gets etched onto your resume, immortalising your dedication, ambition, and accomplishments. These experiences aren't just entries; they're pathways to growth, pushing boundaries, and becoming the best version of yourself!
Is there a passion burning within you that you’d willingly invest your time, energy, and perhaps even a bit of your resources in? Brace yourself, as countless organisations are on the lookout for spirited volunteers who dare to go the extra mile. Just imagine: SOLS Foundation, AWAM, WWF-Malaysia, UNICEF Malaysia, Amnesty International Malaysia, and more are all eagerly awaiting individuals like you to join them in their cause!
Volunteering is more than selfless giving; it's about enhancing your journey. It allows you to invest your free time in personal growth and soulful fulfilment. The best part? It's flexible. Whether woven into your school routine or embraced fully during semester breaks, it aligns your commitments with your passions. But this story is just beginning. Volunteering possesses the power to transcend boundaries, becoming a bridge to worldwide endeavours such as disaster relief and international development. Your impact doesn't halt at your local community; you're a vital part of a larger movement for transformation. And here's the added sparkle: your resume receives a shining upgrade as volunteering resonates with dedication and a sense of social responsibility, qualities that present you as a fitting candidate for employers.
Armed with my unique perspective, I embark on this cherished semester break with the belief that productivity isn't and shouldn't be limited to any prescribed ‘right.’ It's about following the rhythm of one's passions and interests, progressing at a pace that harmonises within. With the suggestions above to act as a compass, I hope they will guide any unsure student to unlock the full potential of their holiday interlude!
Michelle Lee Shu Ling is currently pursuing a Bachelor of Laws (Honours) at Taylor’s University. When she’s not serving as President of Taylor’s Lakeside Model United Nations (TLMUN) Club or PR Director of the Taylor’s Mooting Society, she writes!
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