Tips for Managing Reading Week

Tips for Managing Reading Week

It is almost that time of year! The time that students everywhere look forward to… Reading Week!

I have been attending GPRC for the past four years. The first two years, I was taking just a class or two, but the past two years I have been a full-time student.  As a student I have very mixed feelings about Reading Week. It’s hard to not love the break, but truth be told, I have a really hard time getting back into the swing of things after Reading Week ends.  With that in mind, if anyone else feels the same struggles as I do, I have compiled a list of a few tips to help you with managing and staying on track during your Reading Week.

  1. Take the time at the beginning of the Reading Week break to make a list of what you want to accomplish over the week. Make a list, and plan the things that you want to do with your time.
  2. Get some rest during the week.
    Our brains are so tired, we really do need some sleep. Treat yourself to some early bedtimes.
  3. During your week off give yourself some time to plan out your next two months of school. Make a schedule using your course outlines as a guide to what is coming up. There is going to be a lot to do, but with a plan in place, you are laying out the ground work for success.
  4. Use some of Reading Week to get caught up. Whether that means doing laundry, grocery shopping, cleaning your house, or maybe making some meals for the week ahead.
  5. Plan some “you-time”. For myself, this means catching up on texts and phone calls, doing some Netflix binging, and taking my dog, Richelieu (shown in picture), for some good walks. Whatever it is, do things that make you feel good, things that have been weighing on your mind when you are busy with school.

  1. Don’t stop doing school work for the whole week. This is a big one. It is so hard to get back at it once you have completely stopped. I give myself a few days totally off, but then I start slowly getting back into the school routine.
  1. Use the weekend before school starts as a regular weekend. Meaning, use your weekend as you normally would during the school year.
    For me, that means coming to the college to study for a few hours, especially on Saturday, because that is what I do most weekends.

It definitely would be easy to take the whole week off, and I have done that… but the fact is, I’m way more successful at handling the after break blues when I follow these tips.

Have a great Reading Week everyone!

Submitted by Jessica Fontaine Gwin, Student Ambassador

Congratulations to GPRC Drama Instructor, Michelle Rios!

Congratulations to GPRC Drama Instructor, Michelle Rios!

It’s an exciting time in our GPRC Fine Arts department.

On February 5, the 2018 Helen Hayes Nominations for Theatre were announced in Washington, D.C. and the College’s very own Michelle Rios, Drama instructor in Fine Arts, has been nominated for Outstanding Performance by a Supporting Actress for her recent work in a musical called “In the Heights”.

Photo from Michelle’s website at

Broadway veteran Michelle Rios, whose theatrical credits include supporting roles in multiple Tony-Award nominated productions. With a career spanning over 25 years as an actor, singer, educator, writer, director, and theatre facilitator, Rios has worked alongside talents ranging from Paul Simon and Eva Longoria, to Lin Manuel Miranda and numerous Academy Award nominees.

It was love that brought Rios from her native New York to Canada. “I married a Canadian, and I’m proud to call Canada my home,” says Rios, who earned her Master’s degree in Fine Arts from the University of Alberta. ​

“What I hope to instill in the next generation of performing artists, educators and community members is a greater understanding of what goes into the creative process of theatre. It’s a balance of both practice and theory.

“Can you imagine a world without music, films, visual art, and live theatre performances? I often pose that question to individuals who believe the fine arts aren’t viable or significant.

“I’ve witnessed first-hand how the fine arts are not only entertaining, but also educational, healing, and essential to our day-to-day existence. Through drama, students may strengthen their public speaking skills, explore self-expression, and improve interpersonal relationships in a safe environment that is also highly collaborative.

“Regardless of their career path, the skills they learn through drama will only enhance their professional and personal journeys.”

One of Michelle’s Drama classes at GPRC.

Rios has taught in various academic institutions, including the University of Alberta, and has led theatre workshops across the continent, from Juilliard in New York to the Citadel Theatre in Edmonton. She now continues to share her talents at GPRC.

The awards will be presented May 14, 2018. Once again, our sincere congratulations to you, Michelle for this prestigious honor.

Read more about Michelle and her career path here.

Learn more about the Drama program at GPRC here.

Check out the student success story we wrote on one of Michelle’s students, Emily here.