So you are joining the ranks at CU Boulder. You have come to the number one party school in the country and you want to stand out in the crowd, learn college speak, or maybe just blend in smoothly. Either way here are 25 tips that will help you find your way this year. Consider this your freshmen orientation, ladies.
Photo by: Brant Fuller
1. Don’t loft your bed–When you’re tired, climbing into your bunk can feel like climbing Mt. Everest. Not to mention you can forget cuddle sessions if you loft your bed.
2. Befriend your roomie– Be friendly with your roommate but have other friends too. You are bound to get sick of each other at some point and you are going to need someplace to get away to.
3. Be open minded–College is about trying new things. Try things out but don’t lose who you are–value advice from old friends, but take the time to party with new ones.
4. Don’t go out every night–I don’t condone underage drinking, but if you’re going to party, do it with some brains. Don’t drink in the dorms, watch your drinking habits and make sure you are getting exercise every week. Remember ladies, the easiest way to gain “The Freshman 15″ is to go out every night and never hit the gym. Some nights you shouldn’t miss at CU-Boulder? Halloween and St. Patty’s Day.
Photo of CU Freshmen on Halloween
5. Rush. Go through rush or “fall recruitment” even if you don’t plan on joining a sorority. It can be fun getting to know people, and will help acquaint you better with CU.
6. Follow the Adventurous 500 (duh)– Whether you keep up with us via facebook, twitter, youtube, or by our website, The Adventurous 500 was one of the more entertaining ways I used to optimize my freshman year–deals, blogs and music.
7. Go to class– Half the battle is simply attending and with 35% of freshman students dropping out of school each year, you can’t afford to skip. If you start skipping class it gets easier and easier to fall behind.
8. Girls rule boys drool–Boys take a step back in maturity when they are on their own. Don’t expect them to want a relationship…or call you back. Take the first few years of college to focus on building yourself rather than a relationship.
9. Learn about you landlord before signing a lease– Do your research on your living options (for sophomore year). Start looking for a place to live in January and make sure you read through your lease with your parents to avoid getting yourself into a confusing legal situation. Landlords can make or break your living experience.
10. Take advantage of happy hours–Restaurants offer cheaper meals, appetizers and drinks–a great way to start off your night with the girls.
12. Be drink savvy– Always pour your own drink and never put it down at a party. I am sure you will hear that a million times, but it is important. While most people are good people and just want to party, there are creepers lurking when you least expect it.
13. Make friends in class–Set a goal of getting to know at least one person well in each of your classes. It will motivate you to go if you look forward to seeing them each day and (more importantly) you can exchange notes.
14. Avoid picking 8am classes at all costs–No matter how much of a morning person you are, you are going to be living in a dorm with hundreds of other people who may not go to bed at the same time as you…and pee in your hallway.
15. Be realistic with your budget–Just because you may want those Steve Madden boots, doesn’t mean you can afford them. Many college students go into debt during college by making needless purchases and because our economy is horrible your parents aren’t a sure bet either.
16. Never wear a nice jacket out–Buy a cheap jacket that you can stand losing. If you forget it or it gets stolen, its no big deal. Try looking at Goodwill and other thrift stores like Savers. I like to call them Frackets (frat jackets).
17. Take time for yourself–Find a place where you can have “you time” (i.e. get coffee alone, take walks or find a special place in the library where you can focus on you for a little time each day.)
Photo by Kayla Fuller (me) at The Laughing Goat in Norlin Library
18. Never walk home alone at night–And never let your friends walk alone. Take advantage of CU’s Night Ride System or Taxis.
19. Avoid losing your purse–Never bring anything too important out with you, you will lose it eventually. Satchels are a great option if you really need to bring your stuff out.
20. Be textbook savvy A classic mistake that freshmen make is buying every book from the bookstore. Wait for the first week of class to finish before buying your books. Sometimes you will not need them at all, you may be able to share with a friend and always check Amazon or Half.com for good deals first!
21. Make connections–Start making connections your freshman year, including an internship. For Colrado student: you’re lucky to live in one of the only economically fortunate states in America–companies are looking interns and new talent.
22. Better safe than sorry–Carry pepper spray on your keychain, don’t talk on your cell phone if you are walking alone, and take well-lit roads.
23. Coco knows best– “A girl should always be two things: classy and fabulous” ~Coco Channel. It’s not classy or fabulous to sleep with every guy in a circle of friends, especially without protection. Your decisions are your own, but be smart!
24. Introduce yourself to your professors–They notice when students make an effort with them. If you really feel like standing out sit in the front of class–it’s statistically proven that front-row students get higher grades.
25. Always wear shower shoes–just do it.