The Ultimate College Bucket List

By Andrea Loaiza on February 18, 2017

You can divide college students into two different groups: the ones who are counting the hours to graduate, and the ones who would love to take two classes per semester to stay four more years.

However, whether you love it or not, you must take all the advantages that being in college can offer you.

1. Adventure inside and outside of campus. Don’t get upset if you took the wrong bus and got to the other side of the campus. This is a perfect way to get to know the place where you are going to spend the next four years.

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Also, don’t waste the opportunity to know more about the state/city/country you are living in. Take your car (or an Uber) with your friends, and visit around. You never know; you may find the best place to brunch on Saturdays.

2. Get involved around campus. The Greek life may be the best option for some people, but it won’t be your only option. There are more organizations than you may think. Go to the involvement fairs. Stop every time something calls your attention. There may be volunteering organizations, clubs that are related to your major, co-ed business fraternities, service fraternities. From sports lovers to Japanese enthusiasts, you may find your place if you try a little bit harder. Plus, you would get to know more people and expand your circle of friends.

3. Don’t get stuck in your room on a study night. One of the biggest advantages of being in college is the number of libraries you have around. Why sit alone in your room when you could be in the library, stressing the hell out like the other thousand students around you (unless you’ve already tried it before and studying alone is the only way for you to concentrate)?

One of my favorite parts of studying in the library is that I get a sense of responsibility. Everybody is doing what they are supposed to do, and it inspires me to do the same. Visit different libraries until you feel comfortable with one or two.

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4. Have fun: A little party never hurt anyone! Studying is very important, but college is a one-time experience. Going drunk to class is not cool, but feeling like you don’t do anything apart from studying can be overwhelming. Go to a bar with your friends on the weekends. Go to a club from time to time. Go to a house party at least once. Try different types of being social and choose what fits you better. You have to let you relax from time to time. Your brain will need a break, and if you are doing ok, then you deserve it even more.

5. Decorate your apartment/room, even if you have just a month left in there. Decorating your apartment can help you feel more comfortable in it. Put some lights around your room. Buy some paintings. Glue some posters. Buy some stickers. Print some pictures of your friends and family, and hang them around. This will make you feel that you own your own place, and will give you a sense of familiarity.

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6. Learn how to deal with money. Don’t be afraid to spend when is necessary. Paying your bills is important. However, if you really feel that you need to buy coffee to keep you awake in the mornings, you should buy it too. Choose the best days to treat yourself, but don’t overspend if you know you don’t have a really big budget. Prioritizing is very important when talking about money.

7. Take an elective class. Elective classes can be fun. Wander around and see what catches your eye. A simple elective could open your eyes in what would be a good focus for your major. For example, you may take a business elective and realize that you would like a minor in business.

8. Organize yourself. If you want an organized life, you should organize your surroundings. Keep your room clean. Put everything you use back to where it was. Use a planner to remind you of the important tasks you should do this semester.

9. Embrace all-nighters. From drinking coffee at 11 p.m. (the moment you started studying for your 8 a.m. test) to watching cat videos at 3 a.m. because the information was so extensive that you need a break from all the “thinking.”

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I never did an all-nighter until I came to college, and it was a fun and exhausting experience. Don’t be afraid to do it, but don’t be so lazy that you need to do it for all your exams and homework.

10. Go to all possible events. Facebook is your best friend right now. Since I got to college and I befriended the people I knew were attending my college, every now and then activities that are done in my city appear on Facebook. Whether they are free or not, try to go to a lot of them. Go to club fairs, to career fairs, to social events on your campus, to events outside your campus. It’s a great way to spend your free time.

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11. Take advantage of Amazon prime and online stores. When I lived in Panama, I never tried Amazon because I was sincerely afraid of buying things online and getting scammed. However, the moment I had to live alone, without a car, I realized that ordering things online was the solution for all the problems that I never thought I had. Check the prices of your textbooks online — it could save you a lot of money!

12. Search for internships. College makes you realize that we are, in fact, grown-ups. Career fairs and organizations can help you find an internship in the branch you are interested in. Take advantages of your opportunities. Internships can build your resume. The satisfaction of being accepted by a company is the best feeling in the world. Also, don’t be too picky with paid internships. Experience is really necessary.

13. Take care of yourself. Search for a gym partner and try to exercise at least twice a week. Doing exercise can help you to de-stress. Also, be careful with what you eat. Even though college is the time where people pray for free fast food, getting fat is not the only thing you should be afraid of when eating unhealthy. Eating pizza five days a week can be more dangerous than what you think.

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14. Finally, embrace your school spirit. WE ARE IN COLLEGE. Buy t-shirts with the face of your mascot. Buy hats with the name of your university. Go to football games. Scream how proud you are to be part of a community just because you should. Not everybody has the same opportunities that you do.

Born in Panama, but ended up living in the U.S. to attend Florida State University (Go Noles!). Currently pursuing a BA on Editing, Writing and Media with a minor in Communication, and Psychology. Trying to get involved in the different aspects that writing can allow me. Obsessed with stepping out of my comfort zone as much as I can. Bilingual. Bookaholic. Love every kind of art.

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