Open Campus

Open Campus is defined, at least in the States, as the opposite of Closed Campus, and is frequently applied to high schools during the lunch period.

If a school has an Open-Campus rule, students are allowed to leave campus to eat lunch. If the school is Closed-Campus, students must receive an excuse in order to leave the school for lunch.

When I was in high school, the juniors and seniors were subjected to Open-Campus rules, whereas the freshmen and sophomores were governed over lunch by Closed Campus rules.

I never exercised the Open Campus privilege while I was in school. However, at the end of each of my school years at Southeast, I did eat off campus after the last day of finals (though there was no lunch on campus on that day), so it doesn’t really count.

At the end of my sophomore year, I packed my bike in the car and rode down and up and down and up the hill on Van Dorn between 40th and 48th, to eat lunch at Rollin’ Wok. The reason I had my bike in the car? I was technically not allowed to drive to lunch! I was still 15 years old and had a school permit, which only allowed me to drive alone if I was going directly to or from school.

Nevertheless, it was fun, so I repeated this activity at the end of my junior and senior years, despite not being bound by the law to do so. It also, in far-retrospect, foreshadowed my life eleven years later! After all, I like to keep my bike in the trunk so that I can park off-site and then just ride to a place where it would normally cost money to park. Or, it helps me avoid traffic jams!

Even when I was in college or grad school, I seldom ate off-campus for lunch. The meal plan was too good to squander when I was at UNL, and I didn’t have the motivation to go off-campus for lunch when I was at Northwestern.

I guess that I would have been more likely to take advantage of open-campus policies if I ate lunch with friends and acquaintances when I was in high school, but maybe not. Come to think of it, leaving campus sometimes breaks my rhythm when working.

Yet, yesterday, I rode my bike downtown to Trolley Dogs for lunch, just for the heck of it. Many of my colleagues that I normally eat lunch with at Carthage have meetings on Thursdays during the summer, and though I might go out alone, I think it’s a good break from work and an excellent opportunity to add a few more miles to my bike log for that day!


MathFest: 12 days

Nebraska Regional: 23 days

Semester Kickoff: 54 days

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