So here I am – a fresh graduate of Syracuse University. It has been a weird, fun, exciting, scary and incredible four years. Here is what I have learned:
1) Try new things. My first year I lived with a friend of mine from high school and only hung out with high school friends (for the most part). It was a huge mistake. While I eventually recovered, I was too happy to sit in my little social bubble and not try to meet new people, or new things. Big mistake.
2) Pick up your laundry as soon as it’s done. There is nothing more frustrating than having to do laundry but all the machines are full and finished. Many will just take your clothes out and dump them on top of the machine – unless you want people rooting through your delicates (ladies and certain men!), get your clothes out on time.
3) When there is less than five minutes left in a class, don’t you dare raise your hand to ask a question. If you have a pressing query, wait until after class and ask the teacher one-on-one. There are few things more frightening than a class full of students being held late.
4) If/When you go out to a party, know your limits. Everyone will get way too drunk at some point. That’s where your friends/acquaintances/unlucky strangers will help. But you do not want to be the Guy Who Always Gets Too Drunk.
5) Following number five: I strongly suggest you at least try to go out. You don’t have to join a frat, or even go out every weekend. But you should at least try it. It’s an important part of the college experience, for better or worse.
6) Become very well-versed in making soup, popcorn and noodles. They are cheap, easy to make and can silence a rumbling stomach.
7) Have your fun but respect your dorm neighbors. Hearing a ruckus in the hallway at 2 AM on a Saturday night is fine. But if you start waking people up at 2 on a Monday night, you will quickly piss people off and drive friends away. Know your limits.
8) Get involved in sports. There is almost nothing that unites a campus more than sports. Even if the team is sucks, following the key teams on a campus is a great way to meet people and having something to bond over makes everything go smoother.
9) Find a core group of friends. It doesn’t matter what you do on a college campus as long as you do it with people. Let’s say you want to read the bible every party night rather than going out: do it alone and you’re a weirdo. Do it with some like-minded individuals and you are still a weirdo, but an acceptable weirdo. Find people interested in the same thing as you and stick with them.
10) If there was ever to a chance to experiment, it’s college. And no, I don’t just mean curious freshmen girls who just learned the phrase ‘lipstick lesbian.’ Try a new haircut, learn how to play the guitar, join a club team. College is a four-year license to expand your horizons. Take advantage.