Students tend to associate summer with words like beach, vacation and relaxation. The one word they shy away from is “school,” in an attempt to get away from it for a while.
For some students, school is simply a place to go for the better part of the year. For others, it is a permanent move and serious lifestyle change. A new life is forged and built over the summer for students. This is all brought about for three common reasons: work, classes or sometimes both.
Many ISU students only work on campus during the school year.
“We do not hire much during the summer but that is because there isn’t a lot of interest. We are always open to more students coming in, but after being here for a few years, the interest is not here,” said Weed Man Lawn Care sales manager Damon Apsey. “I could see why it is hard to get a job come summertime, but we do not have a lot of interest in anything.”
“Living here in the summer is an adventure of its own,” said ISU student Marie Wanally. “The town is ghostly but you are able to forge bonds because of it. With friends, coworkers and acquaintances, life down here during the summer is what you make it.”
Students do make new experiences in the summer, and it all starts with
what they can make out of it. Many students take on full-time hours with
work to make money for the upcoming year.
“This is my first summer down at ISU, but it’s such an odd time. I
work down here and go to class, but I feel as if I am able to soak in
Bloomington-Normal more than ever,” ISU student Yahaira Strudi said.
“The lack of student presence has made me appreciate the finer points of
town, like Uptown Normal. It gives the entire town a new personality.”
“When the full slate of school schedule swings back up, I’m not sure
how ready I am going to be for it,” Strudi added. “I love having this
time away, though.”
Observers in town find the obvious sign of student absence:
decreased presence in Downtown Bloomington, less revenue being brought
in by vendors and a ghostly presence around ISU’s campus.
“I like living down here on my own, but being down here during the
‘student drought’ is not great.” said ISU student Brent Hamber. “I go to
work, come home and do the exact same thing. It is not the same
liveliness of college that I have come to expect.”
While there are many different opinions concerning living in
Bloomington-Normal during the summer, everyone has a different
experience. Students, working and studying, seem to always have
something different to experience at ISU.