How to Be a Columbia Student

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Class of ’17, enjoy your lazy days

Dear Admitted Students,

We’re so excited for you! We know you can’t wait to be here, and we can’t wait to induct you into our secret society welcome you. It may seem like college is too far away. In the meantime here are some tips to feel like a Columbia student regardless of where you will go to school.

1. Stop eating food your parents give you. Only eat cheese samples, pizza, and sandwiches. Then be confused when you run out of money.

2. Bitch about something called UWriting and Frontiers. A lot.

3. Find a middle school cafeteria’s max occupancy level, put twice that many kids in there, and call it “Ferris.”

4. Complain about how many classes you have that day and go to 70 percent of them. Just kidding. Go to 40 percent of them.

5. Say “heteronormative,” “phallic,” and “social construct” when you don’t need to.

6. Tell people you go to Williamsburg often.

7. Work out twice per semester. When you do, text everyone you know and say “Sorry I missed you, I was working out.”

8. Whine quietly when you have to walk to somewhere 100 yards away (Butler) and whine really loudly to people you don’t know when you have to walk somewhere 400+ yards away (“Why did they have to build Pupin there? Really?”).

9. Tell everyone you live in “Manhattan.” Not New York. “Manhattan“–specifically, the UWS.  That means Upper West Side, duh.

10. Make NYU jokes and then get dodgy when people ask you about the last time you went south of 92nd street.

11. Mention in casual conversation that the chandelier on the Vampire Weekend debut album is from St. A’s. Like that society at your school. Basically your school is just really important in all facets of life.

12. Do the same thing for Obama and Alexander Hamilton.  Also for Kerouac and Ginsberg, except do it in a coffee shop in Williamsburg.

13. Have dinner at seven and then buy yourself chicken wings and Jamba Juice at ten-thirty.

14. Stay at your public library for 52 hours straight.  Leave notes to make sure nobody takes your spot.  Get lucky.  Don’t get lucky.

15. Complain that your school has no sense of community or tradition.

Enjoy the rest of your year. Succumb to senioritis.  YOLO.



LOOSE SEAL!!! via Shutterstock.

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  1. I award you no points  

    and may god have mercy on your soul, Bwog. Do the exact opposite of what Bwog says at all times, children.

  2. anon  

    Barnard, take note.

  3. jersey kid  


    yes, you are right

  4. CC 12'  

    It's Frontiers...enough with this Frosci business

  5. CC 12'  

    It's terrible either way, brace yourselves

  6. Anonymous

    I love Columbia!!!

  7. Anonymous  

    and if you get a class in SIPA, wallow in your misery.

  8. CC '13  

    way to go, bwog. lower their expectations, spare them the heartache.

  9. Anonymous

    Oh yea. Save yourself a lot of trouble. Don't go to Columbia. I had an awful time and dropped out.

  10. CC'14  

    Hate on Barnard if you're a Columbia girl. Well, it was kind of a rule of thumb until that stupid Obama thing. Then everyone got all sensitive. But it's okay to hate them in a non-public forum.
    Call GS kids "grandpa" but respect them for the amount of work and real life they've been through.
    Get used to dealing with people with completely shitty attitudes. You want to see a registrar? Get ready to deal with a bitch. You want to get money back because your laundry machine didn't work? Get ready to deal with a bitch. You want to get into your dorm (that's not Carmen. Sir Michael's the bomb)? Get ready to deal with a jerk.

    Don't ever ever ever let anyone tell you that you shouldn't try your very hardest to enjoy being here. I know there's a lot out there about how Obama hated it here, how someone committed suicide, how some sophomore dropped out and started a blog... But if you really just sit down a realize "Wow, I'm in the greatest city in the country, studying at one of the finest institutions in the world. The name Columbia will open a thousand doors for me, and my safety net, by graduating from here, will be much stronger than those who went to places other than me." Yeah, sometimes it sucks here (especially freshman year), but there's so many things that Columbia has to offer that even if you have a rough time, you should take advantage of them.

    Oh and don't forget to ask upperclassmen for help. We really want to help you. Just reach out. If you're lost, ask someone. Really, don't be shy or ashamed. College was a frightening new experience for all of us. We've been there.

  11. CC'15

    I love Columbia. Best decision I ever made was to go to this amazing school.

    Congratulations! Get ready for a great adventure.

  12. alum

    it's sad to think that probably a good chunk of the incoming class won't get the loose seal reference

  13. anonymous  

    south of 92nd is really pushing it. more like south of 110th, north of 120th, east of amsterdam, and west of riverside drive. my life is confined to that box.

  14. SEAS 2015  

    you're probably from the same part of town as the staff or can speak their kind of slang or something because unless you can roll up with some sort of swagger and say "yo" a lot i don't think you'll get any respect from staff.

  15. SEAS 2015  


    Your columbia education has made you too PC. just because i'm saying something that's true but a little racist, your feathers get all ruffled.

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