As winter break approaches, some Aggies have opted to stay in town over making the journey home.

As the Fall 2019 semester wraps up, some students go home, while others stay in the Bryan-College Station area. Students who live in dorms on campus must be sure to clean their room, remove all trash, unplug all items and speak to their RA’s for more guiding information. All residence halls will be closed on Dec. 14, and students should be checked out of their residence halls within 24 hours of completing their last exam or no later than Dec. 14. Students who wish to stay longer may go to A&M’s Residence Life website and request for an extended stay. There is also temporary and short-term student housing for those who may need to stay home on campus during winter break.

Christopher Picciano, a nuclear engineering junior, said he plans to stay in College Station for a large part of the break to relax after a tough semester.

“As an engineering student, it feels good to be able to finally have some time to relax and take a break, that and it’s a long drive back home,” Picciano said. “I think I speak for every engineering student when I say that it’s always needed at this point in the year.”

For those who are going to stay near campus during the break, parking is available in certain parking lots throughout campus for those who have a parking pass, and students can check which ones may be parked in on the Transportation Services website.

Jonatan Lara, an ocean engineering junior, said he is going to use the break to enjoy his free time.

“I see my family frequently during the school year,” Lara said. “So it’s really no different during breaks like this. I live here, that’s the way I see it, so I don’t go visit home for extended periods of time like maybe other students might. I’ve found that as I’ve gotten older, I’ve been less inclined to go home as much as I used to.”

Dining halls on campus will be closed starting Dec. 11. Evans and West Campus libraries will both be closed from Dec. 21 to Jan. 2, and the Memorial Student Center will stay open during the break and operate during normal business hours. After operating on an adjusted schedule, Evans Library will resume normal operating hours on Jan. 11 followed by the West Campus Library on Jan. 13.

Lara said it’s important to take this time and be thankful for having pushed through the semester, no matter how well or poor you did.

“Everyone struggles during the semester,” Lara said. “It is a constant grind, so take this time to not only hang around family and immerse yourself with them, but to also clear your head and enjoy yourself and forget about school for a couple of weeks.”

When Aggies leave for the holidays and campus gets quiet, it opens up the opportunity to get your headspace correct and refresh your mind on your own time, Picciano said.

“It goes from a bustling little town to almost a ghost town in the matter of a week,” Picciano said. “I like to use this time to clear my head on my own, while it is nice and quiet. Some of my best memories of college so far have been of me fishing by myself during winter break at Lake Bryan. It’s peaceful.”

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