Why I Love The Back-To-School Season

Photo courtesy of Rebecca Kohn


No other season is as stress-inducing yet reward-promising as the back-to-school season. Even years after the last test has been taken, some people will still feel the familiar rush of adrenaline at the onslaught of hyper-saturated television and social media ads promising to help you prepare for the year. And yet there are several reasons to love it. The comfort of buying new school materials, the optimism of family and school leaders, and some refueled sense of purpose really make this time of year stand out.

Most of the memorable moments in my life took place inside academic institutions, so it is no surprise to me that the yearly transition from summer to fall would be so ingrained into me. 

Every year around late July to early August I would have my peaceful summer days interrupted by loud, gaudy commercials promising to save me money on school year essentials — notebooks, paper, calculators and so on. 

Some may find the prospect of shopping for items that will inevitably go unused or fall out of style in a year daunting, but I personally enjoy taking my part as a consumer to find matching binders and color-coded sticky notes.

Furthermore, it would be a lie if I said I didn’t like the overwhelming amount of positivity in the face of a new school year. Everyone is looking forward to a fresh start with new professors and classmates. All of my family members send me “wishing you luck” texts and “you’re going to do great!” messages. 

Their optimism really curbs the amount of pre-emptive stress of meeting all of those new people and breaking into different opportunities. 

Not to mention, the influx of shiny-eyed freshman is always a heart-warming sight. The amount of hope laced with hesitation reminds me of my first college experiences and how much I’ve grown since then. It reminds me how much a person can grow in a year — let alone four — with a little bit of hard work.

Speaking of which, my lackadaisical summer schedule always needs renewing this time of year. Instead of sleeping in till God knows when only to do nothing, I’ve now got to be up and out of the house early so that I can make it on campus in time for the commuter Hunger Games and my morning classes. 

When you wake up that early, it is a lot more difficult to laze around watching Crunchyroll or playing video games for hours. Not to mention, with the semester upon us, so is the homework. 

Having weekly, even daily assignments given surely spurs you to be constantly working on something. Especially once you get close to your senior year of college, it becomes ever more pressing to have all of your ducks lined up in a row for graduation. 

I can’t speak for everyone, but I know the rush of getting another chance to raise your grade point average even by just a half point is enough to make me feel like being productive. 

Naturally, these are rather unique feelings to the start of the year. By the time the midterms roll around, I will have already lost those pens I wanted, forgotten the kind words of family and friends and hit the snooze button until exactly the final minute before I would be late to class several days in a row. 

Regardless of whatever happens during the year, the start is always an exciting time. And sure, there is the anxiety of meeting expectations and fear of failing that haunts me during the coming days, but it’s obviously all worth it if I get to buy a brand new set of sloth-themed stationery.