Breaks & Free Periods

During the first two years, medical students get a two-day fall break, a two-week winter holiday break and a one-week spring break. These breaks may or may not coincide with the university's holiday schedule. The breaks, or lack of them, that may surprise some are as follows:

  • Between the first and second year, medical students get the summer free - typically from late May to early August. During this time some opt to do research for credit or salary. Many also pursue research, service and other travel opportunities both at home and abroad. This is essentially your student's last break, so this is the time to plan that big family vacation!
  • The second year ends in early to mid May and the third year begins the last week of June or first week of July. During this time students will be studying for the Boards - and hopefully getting some rest before their third-year rotations begin.
  • During the third year, students have a two-week free period over the winter holidays and a two-week free period at some point during the fall and spring semesters. Students also receive a day off for major holidays.
  • Many students begin their fourth year one week after their last clerkship. During their fourth year, students get a two-week free period over the winter holidays and may have a day off for major holidays depending on the student's individual responsibilities and schedule. Free time during the fourth year will vary with the number of electives students choose to take and the amount of time spent applying to residency programs.
  • Commencement is typically in early to mid May, and all residencies and internships begin on or just before July 1.