With spring break coming up fast, of course the most productive use of these column inches would be to impart some hard-earned learnings to the young, wayward RCs about how to best use their upcoming week off. Spring break as a business school student is very different from the undergrad spring breaks you all may be used to, and we ECs have toiled thanklessly to gather the very best advice on planning, executing, and recovering from these trips which we will remember for the rest of our lives (although I’m a little dubious about that last part – remembering them the next morning was hard enough). So sit back, relax, and for the love of God keep reading. Are you still there? My editor tells me my readership drops off pretty dramatically after people realize it’s me.
Wherever you’re planning to go, go farther
Did you do spring break senior year in Miami? Try Cuba this time instead, I hear the healthcare is
fantastic. Thinking about Cancun? What are you, a 19-year-old coed? The southern tip of Argentina is phenomenal this time of year, get your butt in gear. Southern California? Hell, Japan is only another 5000 miles away, it’s practically next door! You’re never going to have this opportunity again (until spring break EC year, but you’ll be panicking and unemployed then, so it doesn’t really count), so it’s important to make the most of it while you can – and everybody knows that in business school, what you get out of your experience is directly proportional to how much money you put in.
Fewer motels, more honeymoon suites
You may be thinking back to undergrad and remembering that being frugal with your lodgings let you have more fun on the beach / at the club / in your parents’ basement. This is now as far from the truth as you could possibly get. Lavish accommodations are an absolutely essential component of your experience – they give you space to unpack your sixteen suitcases (what, you’re gonna wear the same shoes twice? Come on, be serious), your own bed to stretch your old, tired body out after a long day of drinking by the pool, and a vantage point (read: wraparound balcony) from which to laugh at the poor undergrads crowing the public beaches below. Just remember: there is a correct number of yachts to rent out for your trip, and that number is greater than one.
Calling it a trek turns it from “conspicuous consumption/debauchery” to “a learning experience”
Going to the Bahamas? BahamaTrek. Peru? CuzcoTrek! Your parent’s basement? DissapointmentTrek2014 (something tells me specifying a year on that one is necessary). The
requirements for calling yourself an HBS trek are simple – all you have to do is invite a minimum of 15 of your closest friends (accidentally posting about it on Facebook probably took care of that for you, don’t worry), a clinically excessive amount of alcohol, and the willingness to be horrifically late to any and every scheduled event. After all, what says “I’m having the most fun of my life” more than sitting on a poorly-air-conditioned bus waiting for that obnoxious guy nobody likes to finish gelling his hair in his hotel bathroom?
Stay away from the undergrads
Hooking up with undergrads you find on Tinder in Cancun is like playing basketball with your 8 year old nephew – sure you’ll score, but nobody’s gonna be proud of you when you tell the story afterwards. You’re better than that. Also older. Yuck.
Recovery is critical
This part is actually surprisingly similar to undergrad – once you arrive back on campus, the most
important thing is to make sure your friends and classmates know exactly how good of a time you had while you were away. Wait to post your Facebook album (ironically titled “Party in the USA” or some clever alteration of a book title or song lyric) until a few days after you’ve gotten back to Boston – this ensures your friends will be back in town as well, and therefore maximizes the number of people who will be available to “like” your photos. Get in a quick session at the tanning salon before school starts up (“wow, you got so tan!”), and make sure you bring your standard bottle of VitaCoco to class with you – otherwise it won’t make any sense when you say things like “I need a vacation from my vacation” or “I think I had too much fun.”