Is sophomore summer a misnomer?

by Becca Rodriguez | 7/16/15 7:42pm

Summer is that special term in which the entire sophomore class gets to bond because there are no other students. Or are there? We asked several non-’17s on campus what it’s like to be in Hanover during sophomore summer.

Kathy Dzienkowski ’16

Why are you on campus?

KD: I am [a teaching assistant for] EARS 40 and starting my research for a thesis that I’m going to write next year. I’m looking at soil contamination in Berlin, New Hampshire — it’s two hours away. There’s mercury in the water and soil, so I’m going to be examining that area.

What’s it like to be on when there are so few ‘16s?

KD: It’s pretty weird. It’s different because none of my best friends are here. I’ve been meeting new people, getting to know a lot of the younger girls in my sorority and meeting the ’16s on campus. I knew some of them, but I didn’t necessarily hang out with them. We have a GroupMe so now I do hang out with them. There are a bunch of us on campus, actually.

How does this summer compare then to your sophomore summer?

KD: It’s not the same only, because [now] I don’t really want to intrude. I’ve been trying to lay low and do my own thing. I’m on the softball team, so I do hang out with the ’17s on the softball team a lot. It’s different because I don’t go to every event or go out every night, like the typical sophomore summer.

Do you still do other typical sophomore summer things?

KD: Oh yeah! I have more time to the summer-y stuff because I’m not taking classes. TA-ing is really limited hours. I probably go to the river every day. I got a membership at Ledyard, which I didn’t do last summer. I go to Ice Cream Fore-U all the time. I’m learning to cook. I have so much free time that I get to actually have a real summer and not worry about classes.

So you’re happy to be here?

KD: Yes. It’s a different experience, but I’m glad I did it because now I know the younger girls. It’s like school, but less stressful. I love being here, and I’m happy to be here without all the extra stress.

Do you have any advice for sophomores?

KD: I would take advantage of all the events, all the free movies, concerts, the farmer’s market, kayaking. I would enjoy it as much as you can because the summer is a very different time and it goes by so fast. During the normal year you can’t do all of that.

Reza Djavid ‘16

Why are you on campus?

RD: So I’m on campus for two reasons. I’m studying for the MCAT, which I’m taking in September. It was either study at home or study here. I got a research job as well, so they were willing to pay me to do the research and it’s just a more comfortable environment. It’s more comfortable to study here. I have access to a huge number of resources so it’s turned out to be great. All of my friends have internships so no one is really at home over the summer. At least I’m surrounded by some of my friends here so when I have free time I can hang out with them.

Is it fun?

RD: It’s been stressful. I work 6 to 7 hours a day and study for 4 to 5 hours a day. But there’s no homework, and I can relax at night. I live a mile off campus so it’s a whole different scene when you’re not living on campus.

How does this compare to your sophomore summer?

RD: It’s completely different. Last summer was a lot more focused on bonding as a class, and I think that was really special, but this summer is a lot more dedicated and more focused on work and preparing for my post-Dartmouth career.

Do you have any advice for sophomores?

RD: Have fun this summer. It’s a great term.

Kelly Bach ’16, Nick Gutierrez ’16 and Mac Simmons ‘16

Why are you on this summer?

KB: I’m on this summer because I’m working on an ambulance based out of Fairlee and at an inn in Etna.

NG: I’m here doing software development in Lebanon.

MS: I’m working for the Telluride Film Festival through the Hopkins Center Film Director.

How’s it going? What’s it like to be here?

KB: It’s incredible being here for another summer. I’ve been here all three summers now because I really don’t want to leave.

NG: Definitely still a lot of fun but very different form the sophomore summer dynamic. I’m working 9 [a.m.] to 5 [p.m.], so I miss most of the day time and by the time I come home I’m pretty tired so there’s not a lot of random river stuff, but still a lot of fun.

MS: I have a pretty nice schedule actually, I can just work whenever I want to so there has been a lot of random river stuff for me. I guess the biggest change from last year is that you walk around and you don’t recognize everyone you see but there are enough ‘16s on campus that we have people to hang out with campus.

So, definitely a different vibe than your sophomore summer last year. Is it less fun or just different?

KB: Different.

MS: I think it’s a lot different for people taking classes than it is for us because for us, it’s just a Hanover FSP. For them, they’re spending a lot more time with the ’17s so it’s a bit stranger in that way.

KB: I think one of the best things about sophomore summer is you get to interact with your class and you get so close, so I was like, ‘Okay, I do not want to infringe on that.’ I live off-campus, and I avoid coming on campus just because I don’t want to infringe. But when you’re taking class you can’t avoid you’re just thrown into the mix.

NG: Yeah, I am used to having a leadership role in Phi Delt[a Alpha fraternity] and this term I’m just hands-off. I’m here to advise if they need me but otherwise I’m just judging. Mac and I are both living in Phi Delt.

What’s it like to be on campus, living in the fraternity, but it’s just full of ’17s?

NG: We do a lot of just hanging out us two.

MS: You let the ’17s do their own thing.

Kevin Muzzi ‘16

Why are you on campus?

KM: Well, I wasn’t here last summer. I was back home helping my dad work, so this is my summer to be on.

Have you been doing all of the typical sophomore summer stuff?

KM: I try to, but we have football almost every afternoon. I’ve gone to the river a couple of times and enjoyed that. I did the Prouty last weekend.

What did you do?

KM: The 100-mile bike race. My body regrets it but it was a good experience.

Are you taking classes?

KM: Yeah, it’s nice to be able to knock out some of the distributives I have left.

What’s it like to have your “sophomore summer” but not be with your class?

KM: It’s different I guess. Most of the guys I’m really close with aren’t here so it is weird. At the same time whether it’s from my team or fraternity, I still know a ton of people across campus. Plus we have a couple of ’16s on for football, too.