College is a place to further your education, but with college comes a common misconception: you have to party to truly experience the college life. Truth is: you do not have to party to enjoy college. College is not about drinking and partying. It may be part of your college experience, but it is not necessary to have a good time. The decision not to party is a hard one for many, and that decision is definitely the road less traveled. To those who choose not to party, you are not doing college wrong. You are simply approaching college from a different viewpoint.

1. Choosing your friends

Here you are at college away from all of your friends and family you have known your whole life. You have to step out of your comfort zone and make new friends. When making new friends, choose them wisely. You want to be friends with people who are similar to you. Sure, you are going to meet a very diverse group of people while at college. It is okay to have friends who are different than you, but do not let those friends persuade you to party and/or drink if that is not truly YOU.

2. Getting involved without partying

People tend to think the only way to get involved is to party. That is not true. Every college has numerous clubs and organizations that you can get involved with. Sure, fraternity and sorority life is not for everyone. That is okay. Join the Student Government Association, Freshman Forum, Honor Society, Campus Group, or anything else that sparks your interests. Partying does not make you involved. Truly getting involved is by joining these campus organizations that allow you to be involved in all aspects of college life.

3. Be YOU!

I think another common misconception with college is that you have to change to fit in with others. Once again, that is not true. You are going to meet people who have the same beliefs and interests as you. You are going to meet people who do not party. Do not change to fit in with what others are doing. That is the biggest mistake you could possibly make. Be you, and others will accept you for being you.

College is what make you make it. My parents have always taught me that you can have just as much fun without partying. I am thankful for my group of friends who choose not to party, and we enjoy the college life to its fullest potential.