5 Ways to Spend Time Between Classes (Besides Going on Your Phone)

Not every class schedule is perfect, and many Southwestern College students find themselves with a good amount of time between classes. You probably spend enough time skipping YouTube ads, checking new messages and refreshing your Instagram feed throughout the day. Instead of staring at your screen to pass the time, check out these five productive ways to spend time between classes.

Visit the South Bay Botanical Garden 

Business major Jasmin Hernandez studies in the South Bay Botanical Garden.
Business major Jasmin Hernandez studies in the South Bay Botanical Garden.

Blink while passing parking lot E behind the Automotive Department and you might miss the entrance to the South Bay Botanic Garden. The Botanic Garden is perfect if you’re looking for a quiet and more secluded spot to spend thyme on campus. Take a walk around the over four acres of land that make up the garden and you might run into the students of the Landscape and Nursery Technology program, who make sure the garden’s greenhouses, walking paths, water features and hundreds of plant species are well-maintained at all times. The benches, grass area and tables available make the botanical garden a picturesque place to eat lunch, study, read, walk around or just sit and enjoy the landscape.

Work on Campus

Step into the Cesar E. Chavez Building, grab a cup of coffee from Tradewinds Café, ask for assistance in the bookstore or visit almost any other department on campus and you’ll be greeted by busy student workers ready to help. Each semester, many departments around Southwestern College employ students to help them meet their goals through on-campus work experience.

“The concept of the work study program is for students to learn workable skills or enhance their currents skills, earn some money while working and be able to network with others,” said Sergio Soriano, Southwestern College’s student employment services specialist. “Working on campus is also convenient, since students do not need to leave campus to work.” 

Eligibility for student jobs or the work study program will depend on your financial aid status, so you’ll want to make sure you’ve been awarded your aid before applying. 

Even though most offices and departments will understand that your classes come first and be flexible when it comes to scheduling, you’ll still want to have your schedule set so you have an idea of the hours you will be able to work. The staff at the Student Employment Services office are also super friendly and always ready to answer any questions you might have about working on campus.

For a list of available on-campus work study positions, visit the Student Employment Services office on the second floor of the Cesar Chavez Center or check out their website

Join a Club

A student signs up for the French club at the fall semester club fair.
A student signs up for the French club at the fall semester club fair.

Southwestern College is home to a variety of clubs for all kinds of interests, such as anthropology, earth science and photography. Each club has different meeting times and event schedules, so you’ll be able to connect with students who you might not have met through your classes. New clubs are chartered every semester, so there’s always something new to watch out for. Can’t find a club that sparks your interest? Start your own!

Put Your Paws to Work

Putting your paws to work by volunteering is a great way for a Jaguar to give back, and the SWC Cares Closet and Jag Kitchen are the perfect places.

The SWC Cares Closet is a mini-boutique that provides assistance for students in need of professional clothing, and their goal is to give students the resources to feel and dress their best for job interviews. Volunteers are able to sort clothing and accessories, help inform students about other resources, prepare them for interviews and other tasks.

The Jag Kitchen is a judgement-free, friendly and no-cost food pantry for Southwestern College students facing food insecurities. Volunteers are always needed for things like stocking inventory, cleaning, preparing packets and other tasks. The Jag Kitchen is a service learning partner, so students who would like to volunteer are encouraged to sign up with them to earn credit on their transcripts.

“Students who volunteer with the Jag Kitchen are able to see their volunteering in action,” said Jenny Sabas, Jag Kitchen coordinator. “They get to see the outcome of their hard work, and how what they do benefits their peers, community and college.”

If you’re interested in volunteering with the SWC Cares Closet, contact Emily Lynch-Morrisette at emorissette@swccd.edu. If you would like to volunteer with the Jag Kitchen, contact Jenny Sabas at jsabas@swccd.edu

Book it to the Library

The Southwestern College library.
The Southwestern College library.

Studying between classes might not be the most exciting thing, but it’s definitely one of the most productive. Knocking out some homework while you’re on campus means you’ll have less (or even better, none) to do when you get home. The Southwestern College Library and Academic Success Center are the ideal study spots, whether you need a quiet study spot, space to work on a group project, tutoring for a variety of classes or computers to work on. The Academic Success Center also has a Writing Center, where you can get help from skilled tutors for polishing up a cover letter, brainstorming a research paper outline and more.