‘Summa-summa’ time in Berkeley

Sean Goebel/File

Berkeley in the summertime — a mystical oasis of fun, friends and relaxation. At least, that’s what the Clog has heard. With everyone focusing on housing for the fall, aren’t we forgetting something — summer! Is staying in Berkeley really the most amazing way to spend a summer, or is it simply a way for people to avoid the summer subletter nightmare? We’ve compiled a list of the pros and cons of staying in Berkeley for the summer and ditching the Bay for other destinations.

Pro: getting a head start. Seriously, Tele-BEARS sucks a lot. So starting off the school year with a few more units on your transcript can make all the difference when your appointment date is  released. It turns out there is a decent number of students who go to Cal, and for some reason, they always all want to be in your first-choice class. What are the chances?

Con: missing out on a job. What exactly are you giving up by staying in Berkeley over the summer? Perhaps you should have gotten a paying job or internship. Sure, you could have spent the summer lazily sitting on the couch, but there are other options as well. Choosing classes seems like an easier option in our book. But when you graduate, maybe that extra internship or job would have looked better than just more classes. We’re not experts on this job economy, but apparently unpaid internships are all the rage.

Pro: cheap and unique housing. Summer in Berkeley offers a once-in-a-lifetime experience for females everywhere: living in a fraternity. Frat housing is one of the cheapest and easiest summer housing options … and perhaps the dirtiest/craziest. If you’ve never had the opportunity to live in a mansion with dozens of college-aged males, this is your opportunity.

Con: loner patrol. Flash back to freshman year, when a fun Friday night consisted of knocking on random unit doors with lame excuses to try to get to know your neighbors. Yeah, making friends is always awkward, and we’re happy to have those days behind us. But if your friends are ditching you this summer for family vacations or internships, you might need to bust out your cheesy smile and firm handshake once again.

Pro: a lot more nudity. Because nudity is legal on the UC Berkeley campus, take full advantage of those hot afternoons on Memorial Glade. There are fewer people around in the summer to judge/mock you, so you can finally get rid of all of those awkward tan lines. It makes up for the lack of a beach, right?

Con: less “parties.” Not that Berkeley parties are ever really “ragers” during the fall or spring, but during the summer, nightlife at Cal is even calmer. Take advantage of the quiet summer nights, or try to be that one brave soul to spice up the party atmosphere. But be warned: You will probably run into the same drunk kids every single night.

Pro: seating everywhere. With only a small fraction of classes being offered, the number of students on campus drops dramatically. Imagine walking through Sproul without hoards of table hawkers handing out fliers. Imagine no line at Chipotle. And best of all, imagine multiple open seats at Strada.

Con: condensed classes. Fewer students and less competition might make you think summer courses are an easy A, but think again. With only a few weeks to cram an entire semester’s worth of material into, summer courses can be extremely challenging. Take advantage of smaller classes by getting to know your professors, but don’t assume you’ve got that A on lockdown.

So if you’re still contemplating what to do this summer, take all these pros and cons into account, and really make the right decision this summer. It’s almost here.

Contact Chloe Hunt and Jasmine Mausner at [email protected]

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