10 Shocking Things You Will Experience Your First Year At A Christian University

10 Shocking Things You Will Experience Your First Year At A Christian University

... but they won't feel shocking after long.

I thought I was going to hate attending a Christian university.

I grew up in a religious household, but I never knew what it was like to have Christianity brought inside a classroom. My friends in high school were primarily atheists or agnostics, so for obvious reasons we didn't have conversations about religion on a daily basis. We never discussed the Bible in the classroom and teachers were very careful about how they would address the subject of theology.

I kept my faith to myself, keeping my head down when conversations were brought up that I didn't agree with. I didn't dislike the experience of feeling alone in spirituality, because it was the only thing I knew. It wasn't until my first couple of days on campus I understood what it was like to accept faith in all aspects of your life. After being well established in my college career, I couldn't imagine being in any other environment.

There was definitely a level of culture shock that everyone will experience attending a Christian university...

1. Prayer is a norm.

Starting at your freshman orientation, group prayer in classrooms, sporting events and university activities will be a norm. Whether it's lead by your teacher, your classmate or the pastor, praying before everything becomes a lifestyle. In fact, it becomes so natural that it can be strange to not experience group prayer before everything you do.

2. You're allowed, even encouraged, to talk about the Bible in the classroom.

I had quite the surprise in my ENG-105 class my freshman year when my teacher wanted us to analyze Bible verses. It felt strange at first, coming from a school who would never allow this open conversation of Christian theology. Shortly after we got started, I learned how like-minded everyone was. Even if you interrupted something differently, you were never wrong.

3. People will ask you questions like, "How's your heart?"

From a text message out of the blue to a hug in the union, everyone is willing to help you through your academic journey. It doesn't matter if they're your best friend or you sit next to them in your least favorite class. Someone is ready to help and listen.

4. It's not uncommon to see strangers pray together out in the open.

The coffee shop. The classroom. The bathroom. The lobby of the dorm building...

5. You will be frequently invited to Bible studies, life groups and gatherings.

Even my work department on campus has a Bible study.

6. Ring by spring is totally a thing.

I'm not exactly sure why this is a Christian school thing but everyone gets married. Everyone.

7. Random acts of kindness are not uncommon.

Bringing someone a donut because they had a bad day or staying late in the library with your friends isn't nice. It's common. What do you mean people aren't always like this?

8. Everyone's Instagram is filled with Bible verses for captions.

Typically with a mountain or a sunset as the picture.

9. And their favorite Bible verse is in their bio.

Common favorites:
Philippians 4:13
John 3:16
Jeremiah 29:11

10. God is always in the center of the campus, which can lead to some deep conversations when you least expect it.

I didn't need to get hit with the feels today. I know God has a plan for me. I know everything will be okay.

Cover Image Credit: Jon Tyson

Popular Right Now

10 Things That Only Happen On Small Campuses

"No, we don't have a football team"

Don't let people give you the pitiful "ohhhh" when you reveal your enrollment at a small school. Everyone who goes to a small school can agree that it is nothing like a large, state school. I think even those state school students will confirm that. But what people don't know about a small school is that it has its perks, and they are good.

1. Leaving your room 5 minutes before class...and still being on time

2. Guaranteed to get at least one "hey" every time you walk somewhere

3. Actually knowing the people who follow you on Instagram, Facebook friends, or dare I say...Tinder

4. Making friends outside of your major is more common than not

5. You also know every single person in your major

6. Going through a super awkward and aggressive orientation program as a freshman and using that as a strong common bond with a (then) complete stranger

7. Probably finding your best friend through that previously mentioned hideously intense, ice-breaker-obessed orientation program

8. Anticipating the long* wait for food on those really good days but knowing when to go to get around it
*long is really only like 15 minutes

9. There is no cover charge at parties...yes, apparently this is a thing

10. Being invited to dinners at the president's house because you're on a first name basis (oh yeah, and Mrs. President floats around campus regularly with baked pastries and warm smiles)

So if you're looking for a tight-knit community that loves to give out hello's when they are due, or a campus where you can wake up and eat breakfast 30 minutes before class and still be on time, look into those small schools that maybe don't have a 50,000 seat stadium. What they do have are the people you will remember and that will remember you, classes that taught you beyond the test, and a uniqueness that just isn't found at a large school. At a small school you're a face, a name, your own legacy...not a number.

Cover Image Credit: Roanoke College Facebook page

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Things I Miss Now That I'm Home From College Again

There are so many reasons to be glad that the school year is over, but if you've done it right... there are a lot of reasons to miss it too.


So, school is over now and I've come home. As expected I was so relieved at first. No more showering with flip-flops, no more listening to screaming girls running up and down the hall, and a space that is mine and mine alone. But after a week or so of being back, there are a few things I've already started to miss.

I know that not every single person has the ideal roommate but I got really lucky with mine. Coming home I was excited to have my own space, but now when I'm doing my midnight scrolling, I'm realizing that I miss being able to talk to her about the funny things I see in that very moment. Tagging, DMing, and texting her doesn't feel the same as a long night of giggles spent together.

Also, while seeing old friends when you get home is amazing, and there is always a lot to catch up on, you do start to miss your other friends too. Being in college means that your friends are going through similar things as you are all the time. You have tests together, clubs together, and sometimes you spend way too much time procrastinating together. The bond you begin to form is one you definitely begin to miss - especially when you guys don't live close off of campus.

Coming home also means you don't have a set schedule or at least not immediately. You may come back to a previous job and that puts something on your calendar, but the free time you still have during the week can be a little too much. I know I've spent way too much time obsessing over the Tati/James drama than I ever would have at school. The routine I had at school kept me busy and entertained, and I'm honestly missing it a lot right now.

There are a lot of other things to miss too - even things you thought you wouldn't. You miss the classes, the teachers, and sometimes the food. I know I miss the environment. It isn't a perfect one, but it's full of people just trying to find their way. We are all working through the roller coaster of life and we are all stuck on one beautiful campus together while we figure it all out. I miss meeting new people at the bus stops or running into old classmates and catching up.

I guess the bonus for me is that I just finished sophomore year which means I have more time to spend at school. Come senior year, I guess I'll have to learn quickly how to deal without the things I miss - and also create a schedule so I can travel to see all of my friends, but those are all problems for future me.

Related Content

Facebook Comments