Winter break shows a different side of dorm life

Now that classes are back in session and students have returned from winter break, the campus is back to its regular routine with restaurants open, staff workers back to work and students flooding the sidewalks. For most, the new semester signifies a fresh start, but for those who lived on campus between semesters, the increased activity is a welcome return.

Aaron Levy-Wolins, 19, is among the SF State students who stayed in the dorms over the winter break. Levy-Wolins lives in the Towers at Centennial Square dorms on the third floor with three roommates. The Towers and the Village at Centennial Square are the only two dorms that remained open for the winter break.

Because of SF State’s residence hall License Agreements, during Fall and Spring recess, students are allowed to stay in their dorms. However, winter break does not apply.

“I didn’t leave for the break because I wanted to stay in San Francisco and live on my own,” Levy-Wolins said.

Levy-Wolins said he spent a lot of time taking photos around campus, one of his favorite hobbies, going to the beach and exploring the streets of the city.

“I loved it,” Levy-Wolins said. “I was able to have my place to myself.”

The only dining that was open to students still in the dorms during winter break was Subway and the Village Market. This gave him the opportunity to go to Trader Joe’s and cook for himself.

Jarret Spiler, 24, studies Theater and lives in the Village. He was one of the students living on campus during the semester that opted to spend his winter break at home. Upon his return last week, he said the water was cold for days.

“It was like they shut off the water heater or something for winter break,” Spiler said.

Rudy Tescallo, 22, stayed at the Village over the break as well. Because of his schedule at his restaurant job, 1300 on Fillmore, he was unable to go home for the holidays.

“I didn’t mind it,” Tescallo said. “I mean nothing was open and it was boring as hell, but I wasn’t lonely. The weirdest thing was when I saw a coyote and a fox on campus, that was crazy.”

Tescallo spent most of his time working, going to the gym and hanging out at concerts in Oakland. He was able to spend time at home for one weekend in Sonoma County before school started.

As their dorms fill with roommates again and classmates return to campus by the thousands, the students who called campus home during winter break won’t have to worry about unexpected encounters with coyotes and foxes.