Bocas Del Toro, Panama (and why you should travel while you’re a student)

In the third week of the quarter in January, I made an uncharacteristically irresponsible decision to go on a surf trip to panama with a massive group of friends.

I was really nervous to go. I told both of my professors I would be absent for a full week (and then a full week later in the quarter because of a conference.) In response I received a sassy response from one of my professors about my priorities not being in the right place. The other professor was understanding. My advisor was not thrilled but was not upset. The tickets were booked, and I made by way to LAX on a Thursday night after classes finished.

I’m not going to go into detail on the trip itself. This is not a travel blog.

I will say that I was able to make it through a 10 day international trip while in the middle of grad school classes. I had to take 3 or so days to work on homework, I read on the plane, and had to skip out on some of the fun. But I still got 10 days of adventure that changed my life. At the end of the quarter, my grades were fine! My advisor had forgotten I wasn’t at school for a week!

I asked another older student of my advisors if I should go on this trip months before and she gave me the most enthusiastic yes possible. If she hadnt told me it was okay to go I most certainly would not have booked the trip.

So if you’re looking for someone to tell you that its okay to take a trip, listen up: ITS OKAY FOR YOU TO TAKE A TRIP. The mental break will make your work better!! And, truly, what is a week or two in the grand scheme of things? The academic world will still be there when you get back.

Be responsible, tell people you’re leaving with enough advance, schedule your trip at a smart time, stay on top of your work before and after your trip, and GO.

Now here’s some film shots I love from my much needed mid grad school trip.

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