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10 Things To NEVER Do In College, EVER
Just a little advice for the start of a new semester.
College — a new place with new people and a new you! You're ready to get a fresh start on a new campus; before you start, however, there are some social rules that you should know. These are suggestions that you are not required to follow, but they are highly recommended. Here are ten things you probably should not do from now on.
1. Raise your hand to use the restroom.
You're an adult now. You don't have to ask to use the restroom, go get a snack from the vending machine real quick, or go outside to take an important phone call. Just go and take care of whatever you feel is important.
2. Watch your favorite TV show... while sitting in the front row.
Going to lecture might be boring sometimes (and/or tiring, depending on when the class is). You would rather sign the attendance sheet, take out your laptop, and continue binge watching your favorite show. This is especially tempting when you have class in a big lecture hall with 200+ students; however, if you are in one of the front rows, other people can probably see your laptop screen (especially if you have a fairly large laptop). News flash: there are other people in the class trying to actually pay attention to what the professor is saying. It also defeats the purpose of going to lecture, so it's not doing you a favor either. So if you have to go to class and absolutely need to watch that last episode of "Game of Thrones", do your classmates a favor and sit in the back of the class.
3. Sit down on the bus and use the seat next to you for your backpack.
If you go to a big school like I do, we have a bus system to get from one part of the university to another. Do not be that jerk on a crowded bus who thinks their bag/backpack/whatever other stuff you have with you deserves a seat for itself. If you are on a crowded bus, place your bag on your lap, on the floor between your legs, or under your seat. You will get glares from people if you make a special seat for your [insert expensive bag here].
4. Avoid giving up your seat because you're already comfortable.
If you are able to stand on public transportation, let someone else who might have a heavier load take your seat. Included in this category would be elderly people, pregnant women, injured people, disabled people, someone holding multiple bags of groceries, and other people in situations. It's just the kind thing to do.
5. Leave your drink unattended.
There are horrible, scary people in this world. You might think that a lot cannot possibly happen in the two minutes you'll take in the bathroom or to find your friend in that crowded room, but it can. Someone could slip drugs (or something worse) in your drink while you're away. So I'm going to repeat it for those in the back of the room: NEVER LEAVE YOUR WATER/SODA/BEER/UMBRELLA COCKTAIL/ANY DRINK UNATTENDED.
6. Go into the shower without flip-flops.
Don't have your share of athlete's foot. Get a pair of shower shoes for those communal showers typical of first-year residence halls; shower floors can and will be gross when you share them with around 30 other people on your floor.
7. Register for an 8 A.M. class.
8. Avoid asking for help.
College is a tough transition for first-year students. It's normal to not earn marks as high as you did in high school. However, don't let it become a habit because your grades (and your GPA) do matter to employers. There are often resources like writing centers, tutoring, and study groups available for free through the university. This isn't limited to academics, as there are many resources through your college within your reach, such as career services, counseling centers, and health centers. Don't be afraid to ask for help when you need it!
9. Avoid office hours.
This goes along with #9. Professors hold office hours for a reason: so you can come in with your questions and seek help straight from the source. Going to office hours with prepared questions lets the professor know that you are serious about your performance in the class. Another benefit from going to office hours on a regular basis would be a higher possibility of them writing a letter of recommendation for you because they get to know you after a semester of struggle. If you have another class during your professor's office hours, ask the professor if you can meet them at another time that works for both of you.
10. Go home every weekend (unless absolutely necessary).
I know homesickness can get to you when first starting college. The first semester can be tough, and you'll be tempted to make a trip home. Unless you absolutely have to go back to your hometown, try not to. When you are home, you are missing out on chances to meet new people at school and do new things like attending football games, having Sunday brunch at the dining hall with your floormates, and getting involved in student organizations.
You will get the hang of things eventually. Good luck in the upcoming semester!
America's biggest party schools
These are known for their lively party scenes
When a student at Auburn was recently asked, she explained: "These schools usually have, like, a super vibrant social scene, lots of Greek life (like my amazing sorority, duh!), and tons of exciting events happening all the time. I mean, we're talking about tailgates, themed parties, mixers with fraternities, and just, like, so much fun. But don't get me wrong, we still, like, study and go to class and all that. It's just that at a party school, the social life and having a good time are, like, major priorities for students."
So here's what came at the Top-5.
- University of Wisconsin-Madison: In 2021, the University of Wisconsin-Madison was ranked the number one party school by the Princeton Review. The ranking was based on a combination of factors, including student surveys and access to nightlife, among other things.
- West Virginia University: West Virginia University has frequently been ranked among the top party schools in the nation. In the 2020 edition of the Princeton Review's rankings, it was listed as the third top party school. The university is well-known for its vibrant Greek life and sports-related celebrations.
- University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign has been consistently ranked among the top party schools. In 2020, the Princeton Review ranked it as the number one party school. The university is famous for its "Unofficial St. Patrick's Day" celebration and active Greek life, contributing to its party reputation.
- University of Alabama: The University of Alabama has also been recognized for its active party scene, driven by its robust Greek life, football culture, and various social events. In the 2020 Niche rankings, it was listed as the sixth top party school in America.
- Indiana University Bloomington: Indiana University Bloomington is another institution frequently cited as a top party school. In the 2020 Niche rankings, it was ranked as the eighth top party school in the country. The university's Little 500 bicycle race event is a significant contributor to its party culture.
Top Response Articles of This Week
Kick off spring with these top reads from our creators!
Welcome to a new week at Odyssey! The warmer weather has our creators feeling inspired, and they're here with some inspiration to get your Monday going. Here are the top three articles of last week:
The Pen: A Poem by Sara Ashton
How writing has impacted me for the better.
This is a response to 11 Reasons To Write More, Starting Today.
A Love Letter to Women by Giana Scafide
“Women, they have minds, and they have souls, as well as just hearts. And they’ve got ambition, and they’ve got talent, as well as just beauty. I'm so sick of people saying that love is just all a woman is fit for.”— Jo March, Little Women
This is a response to In Honor Of International Women's History Month, Thank An Amazing Woman In Your Life.
Feminism Redefined by Nicole AsamoahFeminism Redefined
With the determination to challenge gender stereotypes and fighting for women’s autonomy, can there be space for the traditional wife movement and the feminism movement to co-exist in the same space?
This is a response to Feminism Is More than Just an Instagram Story
Congratulations to all the writers! Odyssey will continue to spotlight top response articles on our homepage every week, and in our brand new newsletter Overheard on Odyssey. Click here to subscribe!
Want to join the conversation? As a response writer, your work will be featured on our homepage, newsletter, and social media feed. Plus, you'll be compensated by HQ at $10/response for your first 10 articles.
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No Sex And Upstate New York
A modern-day reincarnation of Carrie Bradshaw's classic column
Around the age of 12, when I was deciding whether or not to be gay, Satan appeared on my left shoulder. “Ramsssey,” he said with that telltale lisp. “Come over to our side. We have crazy partiessss.” He made a strong case, bouncing up and down on my shoulder with six-pack abs and form-fitting Calvin Kleins. An angel popped up on the other shoulder and was going to warn me about something, but Satan interrupted- “Shut up, you crusty-ass bitch!’ The angel was pretty crusty. She disappeared, and from that moment forward I was gay.
Unfortunately, 10 years later, I think I have realized what the angel was trying to warn me about. “There will be a lot less options!” she was probably going to say. Yes, I am getting to the point where I am incredibly frustrated that gay men have approximately 1/10 as many potential mates as our Heaven-bound peers.
When I first started college, I obviously tried to find a potential mate among my classmates. But I didn't make any meaningful connections with the handful of other gay men at the school. Also, you know what they say about small liberal arts colleges- the odds are good, but the goods have a lot of chest hair. They aren’t wrong. After one year and three lint rollers, I tried to set my sights beyond Perimeter Road.
Although a world-class destination for those seeking to find white people wearing gauges who feel comfortable using the n-word or girls who speak to horses as if they were people, it turns out Saratoga Springs is not exactly a gay mecca. After quickly running out of options on Tinder and getting tired of watching the little picture of myself sending out waves of digital pheromones into the abyss, I downloaded the gay ‘dating’ app Grindr. My woes would only continue. One of the first people I found on Grindr was named ‘Mr. Big,’ but he wasn’t nearly as romantic as his namesake. A second was a recent transplant from a foreign nation, and after I rejected his advances, he told me that I was the reason why American youth were falling behind the Russians and the Chinese. "You must be stupid," he added. "What kind of grades do you get in school?" “Bs,” I said optimistically. He typed back-“That’s not good at all."
(For the record, I was in the Honors Forum for a semester before taking my talents elsewhere. But they haven’t changed the door code- DM me if you’re interested.)
I spent my summers doing internships in larger cities, where I was lucky enough to date some really cool people. I tried to maintain these relationships after I rowed back up to Alcatraz but it was all in vain.
First there was ‘The Banker’ who I met in NYC. Let me be clear; he had a god-awful personality. He said such abhorrent things as: “I’ll listen to anything but rap.” “I like the Pentatonix version better.” “I like one of the characters on Girls.” Although he had the personality of a manila folder, he had this other endearing quality about him that was impossible to quantify without a ruler. We stayed together for a few months until he thought Miley did a good job hosting the VMAs.
Most recently, I dated a guy who was studying to become a prosthetic doctor. We spent a glorious few weeks together over the summer; I helped him write his papers and in turn he let me make jokes about amputees. I thought we had a real, significant connection, so after returning to school I arranged one weekend to drive and visit him. It was a very long drive- there were 4 empty Mickey D’s Shamrock Shake bottles in the back seat by the time I arrived. Anyone who has tried a cup of St. Patrick’s Sin knows how crazy this is- it takes at least two hours for the neon green chemicals to ooze through your system, burn through your stomach lining and then make a disgraceful exit, and even longer to convince your body to submit to the experience once again. In any case, once I got there, we were having a grand time until he asked me hand him his phone and I saw a notification pop up: “You have a new message on Grindr!’” My heart sunk. We broke up but I still needed a place to sleep. Later that night, wide awake in bed, I re-activated by own Grindr profile. Back to square one.
As I sit here late at night, sipping coffee and chain-smoking while I type this out on my chunky MacBook, I can’t think of any Carrie-isms to sum up my thoughts. I realized before I could love someone else, I needed to love myself? No, I do love myself. It’s not good enough. I realized that I was the problem? Perhaps. I’m too judgmental, I'm quick to right people off, and I think very highly of myself. But I don’t really feel like changing. I guess I'll just have to accept the fact that, as a gay man, I might have to wait a little longer than other people to find 'the one.' I made my bed with Satan and now I must lie in it, alone.
But when my soul mate does show up, he has a lot of fucking explaining to do. Where the fuck were you at, bro?
 For those of you who still believe in love, Grindr is set up as a series of squares in a grid, showing people on the app in close proximity to you. When you open your Grindr, your personal picture appears in the first square. Here, our author makes a tremendous pun involving the location of his picture on Grindr and the metaphorical concept of ‘starting from square one.’
To The Classes That Follow
I want you to want to make the most of the years that are prior to Senior year
I was you not that long ago. I was once an eager freshman, a searching sophomore, and a know-it-all junior. Now? Now I am a risk taker. Not the type that gets you in trouble with your parents, but the type that changes your future. Senior year is exciting. A lot of awesome things come along with being the top-dog of the school, but you, right now, are building the foundation for the next 4 years that you will spend in high school. I know you've heard it all. "Get involved", "You'll regret not going to prom", "You're going to miss this". As redundant as these seem, they're true. Although I am just at the beginning of my senior year, I am realizing how many lasts I am encountering.
I don't want to focus on talking about senior year right now though- I want you to want to make the most of the years that are prior to that. Find your niche. Whether it's sports, academics, music/theater- find it and embrace it. Don't let your friends determine that niche, because I can tell you that you will be shocked by the amount of "friends" you no longer speak to by senior year. I am involved in a little bit of everything- and I am so so glad I took that path. I beg you to find something you're passionate about and pursue it. Someway, somehow, throw yourself into the high school community. Go to football games, please. Yes you may look stupid wearing that night's themed outfit, yes your throat will burn from all the yelling, but you will have a blast. Don't be that underclassmen that is "too cool" to yell for the QB that just ran the ball 54 yards for the winning touchdown. Because you're not too cool. Yell, scream, cheer- these are your boys of fall. Support every sports team. It won't kill you to go sit through a soccer game even if you don't know the rules, just cheer for your home team! Go to the dance. Buy the dress you'll only wear once, get dolled up, and go. Don't worry about a date, go with friends. Dance, look stupid, sing your heart out, and take ridiculous amounts of pictures. Participate in spirit week, because how many other times in your life are you going to see what group of people can wear the best crazy socks? Exactly? Never.
Join a club! One of my favorite parts of high school was becoming the president of a community service club at my school. You will intermingle with people you would never see otherwise. This is your time to embrace ALL of these things that high school has to offer, so embrace them. Before you know it you'll be like me- 3 months until I wear my cap and gown and leave. You're going to miss this; don't leave with a single regret
Songs About Being 17
Grey's Anatomy Quotes
4 Leaf Clover
1. Brittany Morgan, National Writer's Society
2. Radhi, SUNY Stony Brook
3. Kristen Haddox, Penn State University
4. Jennifer Kustanovich, SUNY Stony Brook
5. Clare Regelbrugge, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign