It is time to quit the anti-social club

Music+Education+Major+graduates+Emmett+OBrien%2C+Katie+Mitchell%2C+Ollie+%28dog%29%2C+Marcus+Moone%2C+and+Brendon+Culloton%2C+enjoy+a+picnic+on+the+Main+Quad.+Spend+the+day+exploring+the+campus+to+take+a+breather+from+your+dorm+room.

Cameron Krasucki

Music Education Major graduates Emmett O’Brien, Katie Mitchell, Ollie (dog), Marcus Moone, and Brendon Culloton, enjoy a picnic on the Main Quad. Spend the day exploring the campus to take a breather from your dorm room.

By Gwyn Skiles, Features Editor

Freshmen and transfers — I’m talking to you.

There is a lot of anxiety that comes with moving in. All of a sudden you have hundreds of new neighbors. Showering in a communal bathroom can feel foreign. And this roommate you’re expected to live with may seem like a ticking time bomb after hearing so many horror stories. 

All of these worries are valid. Coming to campus is a huge adjustment and it’s natural to feel nervous. But to calm those anxieties and attempt to live “the best years of your life,” it’s necessary to make yourself uncomfortable. 

Start by leaving your room.

The first two weeks on campus are crucial. It’s when you develop your first sense for where everything is. It’s when you make your first impressions upon your peers. And it’s when you create a plan for a semester’s worth of rigorous classes.

None of this can be achieved by staying inside a 10’x10’ box.

I was a freshman last year, when COVID-19 was in full force. I stayed in my room so much so that I started peeling paint off of the walls to keep myself entertained. Take my advice and safely venture beyond your dining hall.

I know it’s tempting to stare at the new decorations you’ve been planning for weeks. But staying underneath those LED lights for long can’t be good for your eyes. And it’s definitely not good for your social life. 

Set your alarm for 9 a.m., get breakfast from your dining hall and walk around campus. Pop into various coffee shops and gauge whether or not it will be your study spot for the semester. Make sure you know where your classes are so you’re not late on the first day. As cheesy as it may sound, start to develop a relationship with campus: Get to know the squirrels, notice interesting trees and bask in the Main Quad’s energy.

Invite your neighbors to get lunch. Explore a dining hall other than the one in your residence hall. Or reach out to people in the same classes as you and pick up lunch from a takeout place to eat on the quad.

There was little to no orientation for freshmen last year. Take advantage of the in-person events that may happen this year. 

If you want to get to know your roommate, there will be plenty of time to do that at midnight when neither of you can fall asleep. Or do so outside of your room. Maybe the two of you can buddy up and meet others together.

With the Delta variant spreading rapidly, things are up in the air. If trends continue, we’ll all have to adjust. But coming to campus is already an adjustment and the best thing you can do is try to safely normalize your first year. Trust me, I know it’s hard. But it’ll be even harder if you don’t.

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