Maddy Gilner ’22
I’ve always been a major proponent of family-style meals, as they combine two of my greatest passions: dining hall food and making small talk. And so, when family style breakfast was announced last week, I was ecstatic. Mercersburg’s community is its biggest strength, and although the COVID 19 pandemic limited some of the interactions within that community, we now have a chance to catch up on the quality time that we missed.
I can understand people’s initial skepticism over family-style breakfast, though. Waking up and getting ready before 8:15 AM might be difficult for some, especially if they’re used to rolling out of bed at 8:30 AM after hitting snooze five times. But this is perfect preparation for college, where most classes start before 8 AM. Plus, it’s quite easy to change your sleep schedule. According to recent research, you can successfully adjust a sleep routine in a single night–simply go to sleep earlier, and you’ll be fine the next morning. Just be sure to shut off any devices at least an hour before you go to sleep.
I’ve also heard that people are concerned that this will add yet another mandatory event to an already-overfilled calendar. I’ve been a student here for three years, and the schedule has significantly changed each year. And yet, every year people complain that they’re overbooked. Perhaps the time management problem lies with the individual, not the institution. If you’re having trouble with time management, I’d recommend talking to your adviser instead of taking your frustrations out on community-building events.
For some, breakfast is an important time to bond with friends, and family-style meals would take away that time. I completely understand this sentiment, since my friends and I always eat breakfast together. I was initially disappointed when I heard about family-style breakfast for this exact reason. However, I began to look at it as an opportunity to make new friends instead of always sitting with the same people. And truthfully, it’s easy to become cliquey here, so family-style breakfast will hopefully break up those groups and make everyone into one big Mercersburg friend group.
Though I was slightly concerned when the prospect of family-style breakfast was announced to start next Sunday, I am definitely starting to see the benefits now. I can meet new people in our wonderful, kind community, and we can make up for the family-style meals and Monday night dinners we have missed since my sophomore year. I am truly looking forward to this change and hope that everyone will be as excited, talkative, and engaged as we always are.