nsop Archive



Written by

img May 11, 20161:02 pmimg 0 Comments

You might be done with your finals (as previously stated, just crawl into your big blue bin and roll down Broadway, lucky person), but your room is still a monumental mess jam-packed with memorabilia and nonsense documenting your past year at Columbia. What treasures will you find as you comb through your notes and throw out month-old orange shells that are inexplicably under your bed?

#minimalist #lonelyaf #thirsty4u

#minimalist #lonelyaf #thirsty4u


  • “A pretty much empty bottle of alcohol that you bought for a dorm party during NSOP and then hid way too well out of fear of expulsion for illicit substances.”
  • “Three half-used containers of DayQuil.”
  • “Extra vibrator.”
  • “Your roommate’s dead goldfish!”

Many more pics after the jump!



Written by

img November 13, 201511:09 amimg 0 Comments

They hold hands because they've become one identity

They hold hands because they’ve become one identity

Remember NSOP? Wasn’t that a simpler, jollier time? Didn’t you find it so much easier to meet new people and form connections? Those days are long gone – now, many of us have retreated into our own small groups, setting aside congeniality for comfort. We explore this phenomenon through the voice of a frustrated first-year student who tries to navigate their way out of the “slump”. 

There was once joy in my life: I recall, during pre-orientation, actually making an effort to befriend people—and succeeding! And when I tried to be personable or interesting it wasn’t really hard because I was, at the time, personable and interesting. It was easy to care about other people and their opinions, to exchange phone numbers and Snapchat accounts and interest in each other’s futures. I frolicked with my new friends on South Lawn, drank out of the fountains on Low Plaza, and sometimes, would lay my head on Alma’s lap as she stroked my hair and told me everything would be alright. What a beautiful time!

Alas, those days are far behind me. Nowadays, I deter any would-be friends by snarling, crossing my eyes, or maintaining polite but distant body language. I am completely and totally drained of the social energy it takes to form new relationships, mostly because I am entirely too entrenched in my current friend group.

There is no space for newcomers, and no way to exit. We’re like a pack of feral wolves, or a giant blob that consumes smaller blobs. Or it’s more like I’m the small blob and friendship – rather, Columbia – is the giant blob, and I’m being sucked into something unhealthy that I can’t understand. Or like we’re an amoeba that splits perversely and recombines, each component never fully distinct (something tells me that’s not how science works) from one another. I’m not sure where I’m going with all these similes, but the point is that we’ve somehow basically all morphed into the same entity. It’s incestuous, creepy, and at this point, it seems to be unavoidable.

Sometimes our skin sticks together, or it looks like we’re quadruplets in Polaroid photographs (despite our varying genders and ethnicities), or we spend three days straight just looking at each other and not speaking, but comprehending. It’s weird! Tonight, we’re going to an event and two of my friends are wearing outfits from my closet because why not — and I feel like they don’t really exist anymore. Are they just figments of my imagination, or am I one of theirs?

You can imagine why it’s difficult to muster up the energy to talk to someone in lecture who you doubt you’ll see again, or that girl you met during Days on Campus who doesn’t really make eye contact with you anymore. It’s too late; you’re in too deep.

Anyway, all this was just to say that it’s hard to get out of that slump as a first-year! Just hang in there — you’ll get through it!

Perfectly diverse via Shutterstock



Written by

img September 06, 20155:03 pmimg 0 Comments

Sure, NSOP is supposed to be a fun time for all first-years, but admit it – you didn’t really do it right. Whether you were too clean or too sloppy, you probably missed out on some stuff you really hoped for. Did you screw up, or did you achieve the elusive Perfect NSOP?



Written by

img August 28, 20154:16 pmimg 1 Comments

NSOP is approaching, which means most first years are frantically trying to fit as much stuff as they can into the trunks of their parents’ cars. No fear, though, if you still haven’t touched your suitcases (especially if you’re an upperclassman who doesn’t have to move in until the fifth)–here’s an hour-long playlist that will get you motivated to shove all your random shit into boxes!

  1. Tell Your Friends by The Weeknd – Hype yourself up to start packing with this song (produced by Kanye!) from The Weeknd’s new album.
  2. LA Hallucinations by Carly Rae Jepsen – “There’s a little black hole in my golden cup/So you pour, and I’ll say stop”–a reminder to pack your mason jars, and that it’s okay not to drop a ton of money going downtown every weekend.
  3. Black Mambo by Glass Animals Please don’t try to keep your dog in your dorm room…
  4. Beyond Love by Beach House – A sleepy song from Beach House’s new album for when you want to lie down on your bed, but alas, it’s covered in all the clothing you still have to pack.
  5. Henry by Squirrel Flower – A tune for folding clothes and dreaming about that boy who works in your favorite room in Butler.
  6. All I Do by Majid Jordan – Zone out to the beat as you pack your whole life away.
  7. Non, Je Ne Regrette Rien by Edith Piaf – Let Edith Piaf’s resoluteness motivate you to keep shoving random shit into boxes.
  8. Breathing Underwater by Metric – “Is this my life? Am I breathing under [all the dust that is now fluttering around my bedroom because I’ve gone digging through piles of stuff that I haven’t touched all summer?]”
  9. Sparks by Beach House – “You go to school/You follow all the rules,” except for when it comes to the size of your mini fridge.
  10. Gooey Rework by Glass Animals & Chester Watson – See #6.
  11. Queen by Perfume Genius – A song with frantic energy for when you’re trying to zip up your suitcases.
  12. IT G MA REMIX (feat. A$AP Ferg, Father, Dumbfounded, Waka Flocka Flame) by Keither Ape – Check out the original version too.
  13. The Wanderlust by Metric – “I never wanted to go home/Wanderlust will carry us on”–as much as we hate the word “wanderlust,” the sentiment is there.
  14. Say My Name – Hermitude Remix by ODESZA & Zyra – “I need the coat and your jacket/And the remnants of your cigarette packet”–for when you’re trying to get clothes back that your friends from home have borrowed.
  15. Symphonia IX (My Wait Is U) by Grimes – A song for when you’re all packed and ready to leave, but your parents are taking forever.
  16. Campus by Vampire Weekend – Listen to Ezra Koenig sing about his days at Columbia (where can we nap on a balcony???) as you prepare for another semester in Morningside Heights.



Written by

img August 25, 20159:11 pmimg 19 Comments

Earlier this evening, we received an anonymous tip of a poster from the new Sexual Violence Response consent campaign. The poster says “CONSENT IS BAE #BeforeAnythingElse.” The slogan will be featured in the presentations on sexual respect that all first-years are required to attend during NSOP. In the words of the tipster, some students on campus believe “this poster both trivializes consent and appropriates African American Vernacular English.”

With first-years beginning to move in tomorrow for pre-orientation programs, these posters could likely be one of their first impressions of SVR and its attitude toward sexual violence. Last year’s campaign, which compared consent to traffic lights, was similarly criticized for its juvenile concept and disconnect from student experience. We have reached out to SVR for comment on the poster campaign. We will update this post with any response we may receive.

Update, 8/26/15: We received the following response from SVR in regards to their poster series. They also sent us another poster being used in the campaign, which can be seen below.

Sexual Violence Response (SVR) seeks to promote healthy sexuality and positive behaviors. Historically, SVR has approached its consent education campaign from a constructive, encouraging, and fun perspective. This is also consistent with the tone at the national level, most recently with the affirmative consent legislation.

The Consent is BAE poster was developed in conjunction with SVR student staff and was specifically created to speak to students in a more conversational tone, rather than a lecture. It was designed to engage students on the topic of consent and drive to SVR social media channels to learn more. It’s the first in a series of educational communications that will be used this year. We hope students will continue to think, learn and participate in discourse about this topic beyond this one message.

Check out the posters here.



Written by

img August 21, 20151:03 pmimg 5 Comments

stressed packing freshman

“I hope all this unnecessary shit fits into my John Jay single!!”

You’ve read Columbia’s official packing list, you’ve cross-referenced your own list with those of your friends and the other kids on the Columbia Class of 2019 group—now what? Bwog put together a list of a few items to bring that you may not have thought about to help with everything from party preparation to actually passing your classes.

For your social life…

  • A fake ID – Seriously, you need it—a night out at Columbia will usually end in bar-hopping. Yes, they’re expensive, but well-made fakes are a good investment in the next three years of your social life. If you’re more tech-savvy, check out Reddit’s fake ID subreddit for possible places to purchase. There will also be lots of other first-years scrambling to order during the first few weeks of school, so either organize an order or get in on one. Make sure to check out how credible your vendor is (people do get scammed!), and be careful if you decide to ship the IDs to your Lerner address (we’ve heard of the package center confiscating fake ID orders if they figure out what they are).
  • Speakers – How else will you bump Drake or Kanye or The Weeknd at the many parties you’ll be throwing in your Carman double?
  • Cleaning supplies – How else will you clean up all the sticky patches of spilled red bull and vodka from the night before on your floor?
  • Inexpensive shoes – You’re going to be walking around and frat-hopping a lot during NSOP—pick up a pair of cheap sandals (some schools would call these ‘frat flats’) to use during the first few weeks of school, and just toss them when they start to break down. In our experience, you don’t generally have to worry about ruining your shoes post-NSOP (unless it’s snowing or you really like frats or something). Also, for winter—get an inexpensive coat that doesn’t look like everyone else’s. Too many people lose their coats at Cannon’s (ugh)! Don’t be one of them!
  • A corkscrew and a bottle opener key chain – The former for wine nights and the latter for spontaneous parties when you’re on the go.

Don’t forget about your academics…



Written by

img August 19, 201512:54 pmimg 0 Comments

You Are Here!!!

You Are Here!!!

We forgot NSOP was actually a thing, but the schedule for NSOP 2015 was released on Guidebook and we’re feeling all nostalgic for some reason. This year’s orientation is themed “You Are Here,” and includes many of our favorite NSOP programs such as Community Forum, Open Mic Night, and the Gender-Based Misconduct lectures!

To access the official guide, download Guidebook from your smart phone application store of choice. Register a free account or simply search “Columbia University and Barnard College Orientation 2015.” From there, you will have access to a full breakdown of this year’s orientation schedule. One can view Barnard’s orientation schedule online here, as well as the CC/SEAS schedule here (once it is posted online).

This year’s orientation will follow a different schedule in terms of OL group division. Each group is made of 10 members, all of whom are from the same residence hall. Each group (i.e group 7-A) will be paired up with another group (i.e 7-B) from a different first-year residence hall. These two groups will be meeting together at all times and will follow the same tracks.

This year, there are five mandatory tracks aptly named after the five boroughs of NYC for CC/SEAS students. Barnard students are divided into 3 tracks named after some main Barnard bitchez—Magnolia, Milbank, and Millie. Students and groups are expected to attend the given events within their track, i.e. groups 7-A & 7-B are to follow the Brooklyn track! The main events like the New York City event, Community Forum, and the Class of 2019 photo include all first-years and occur at the same time, regardless of group or track.

All of these events may seem fun now, but we’ll let you know which scheduled events you should actually go to during NSOP. Regardless, get excited and start meticulously filling your Google Cal with all these events as you prepare for the sloppiest week of your Columbia life!



Written by

img September 20, 20145:30 pmimg 0 Comments

“Come, [NSOP bracelet], you too must die. Why moan about it so? / Even Patroclus died, a far, far better man than you.” – Homer, The Iliad

If we had done our Iliad reading when we were actually supposed to, maybe we could have found comfort in the wise words of Homer. Instead, we found this abandoned NSOP bracelet.

It's just part of the decor, really.

Besides this lost bracelet that clearly just realized NSOP is over, we have all escaped from that dreadful wonderful week. Consider it a rite of passage.




Written by

img August 30, 20146:24 pmimg 4 Comments

Please analyze the similarities between this Bearden work and the Illiad in the comments.

Please analyze the similarities between this Bearden work and the Iliad in the comments.

For our young NSOP-ers, the academic year has already begun. Intrepid Iliad-er and  Feisty Freshperson Garrett Donnelly gives us his report of the first Lit Hum lecture.

So we all walk into Roone Arledge Auditorium, each with our slightly dusty copies of The Iliad (thank God for the three-day weekend), to inaugurate our class’ entrance to Columbia’s academic life.

Let’s go freshmen.

The class was divided into two lectures (I say lectures, although each were only 20-30 minutes). The first was on “Homer and Harlem,” and focused on Harlem-based artist Romare Bearden and his paintings’ relationship with Homer’s texts. Bearden’s take on Homer’s works led the professor to place subtle hints that we are in Bearden’s position as we open our Iliad and begin our own journeys as artists. This is a theme I assume will become very Columbia. (Not to diminish the idea – it’s why we’re here, after all).

All this said, I only realized what the talk was about afterwards, and during it I kept thinking, “Wait, what? Bearden was so not in Sparknotes.” Then, of course, followed The Iliad talk itself.

Professor and Lit Hum chair Julie Crawford opened up the main lecture with a slew of intimidating PowerPoint slides filled with large passages from The Iliad. She covered several large themes with brief, in-depth looks at the passages and maintained that scholarly-but-casual attitude you just have to love.

A good amount of people brought their pen and paper and scribbled down key passages. Others watched as if at a movie. And the nappers, well…napped. The obligatory Q&A gave some lucky students the chance to understand more about the Iliad or—for that one guy whose question sounded remarkably like something out of The Iliad’s introduction—a chance to show off.

Regardless, both of the talks were introductions not only to The Iliad but to the quality of the scholarship and the professors here. Pretty cool and exciting for all of us newbies.

And yeah, let’s go freshmen.

“After Church” by Romare Bearden via Wikimedia



Written by

img August 30, 20143:58 pmimg 7 Comments

You're very welcome! Hope to see you around!

You’re very welcome! Hope to see you around!

NSOP is basically over except for the optional neighborhood tours (we’d recommend the dessert tour of NYC), but the fun will never stop. In case you’ve been living under a rock, or in Furnald—and check out this Furnald Tumblr, by the way—here’s what’s been going onSend info or your desire to write about your experiences to tips@bwog.com.

Do freshmen do anything but drink?

  • Pike is a fucking rager right now. And they have a consent educator as bartender. #doingitright
  • While pre-gaming for Intrepid, someone was CAVA’d at 7 pm. A moment of silence for our lightweight fallen brother.
  • Meanwhile, two other new students were CAVA’d while on board, but one was not alcohol-related.

Word on the street:

  • “I feel like I have so many friends, but I don’t care about a lot of them.”
  • First year male after 3 hour Sexual Violence seminar: “So, how does a guy protect himself from false accusations of rape?” Needless to say, the Barnard junior teaching looked as though she was going to attack the kid.
  • “Freshmen pronouncing Koronets with french pronunciation (koronay). Can Chez Koronets be the new 1,020?”
  • Overheard by freshman on the steps: “Omg that’s my favorite war, too! There were so many twists and turns. Like it was calm and then the French came in…like, woah!”
  • About 500 extra people at each meal are taking food designated for new students and affiliated staff, and Columbia Dining is not happy about it.


  • “Under1Roof has been the best part of NSOP by far. So done with being shuttled between ‘fun’ get-to-know-you activities. At least we talked about some things of substance.”

See more below, including the happenings of Carman 8.



Written by

img August 29, 20149:38 amimg 5 Comments

These fingers studied abroad while at Columbia.

These fingers studied abroad while at Columbia.

It’s Friday, Friday, gotta wake up on Friday…Congrats freshpeople! You’ve survived most of NSOP so far and have only a few days left before those dreaded classes. But you’re probably excited for them to start anyway. As you prepare for NSOP weekend, remember to stock up on food, condoms and anything else you think you’ll need to carry you through until Tuesday. We heard the Intrepid was a blast, so send in some notes about your fun times on a boat to tips@bwog.com or use our anonymous tip form.

Today’s Highlights: 

  • EcoReps Green Sale: Go buy supplies for your dorm/life/class for pretty cheap. 10 am-4 pm in the Wien Lounge.
  • Open Mic: Go see/hear your talented fellow students fearlessly perform while drinking coffee. Sign up between 7-8 pm at the door (first come, first serve). Roone.
  • Most CC/SEAS freshmen’s registration appointments on SSOL. Don’t be too sad if you can’t get the classes you want.
  • Getting a Job on Campus—12-1 p.m. in Roone.
  • Native and Indigenous New Student Mixer—12:30-1:30 p.m. in Wallach Lounge.
  • CC First-Year Class Council Information Session—5-6 p.m. in 569 Lerner. The SEAS info session is from 5-6 in 568 Lerner.
  • Free Shabbat Dinner—8:15-10 p.m. in Low.
  • Barnard’s library fair: 12-2 p.m.

One Thing To Do Before Graduating: 

Taken from Christine Liu’s Senior Wisdom:

Have an international experience. Columbia gives you so many opportunities to do so, be it through study abroad, international internships, or student group initiatives. I spent last summer in Jordan through the CEO Amman program and had the absolute BEST experience and met some cool people; we even made it onto the CCE FB page!

From The Archives:

Operation Ivy League. Familiarize yourself with Columbia’s history, and learn why you haven’t gone to many frat parties this NSOP.

We’re never disappointed via Shutterstock



Written by

img August 26, 201412:47 pmimg 5 Comments

Like this but with less food

Like this but with less food

It’s that time of year again…you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers. Send ’em to tips@bwog.com.

Dear Bwog, 

I am a first year wondering if it is allowed to ship a mini-fridge to school. Also, is there only one fridge allowed in a dorm room? Thank you!

– Hungry in Hamilton

Dear Hungry,

The answer to this question really depends on how many fridges you’d like to bring. One is definitely okay, and two is okay if you’re in a double (i.e., one fridge per person). It’s a good idea to coordinate with roommates, though, since one fridge is probably fine for two people. As a first-year most of your meals will come from the dining halls, so you won’t need as much fridge space as you think. Unless you really like hoarding the sliced cheese from JJ’s place.

Bwog has never heard of one person in a single with more than one fridge, but the restrictions on fridge size and quantity are pretty loose. For example, there’s no need to stick to the Columbia-mandated maximum fridge size of three cubic feet, though we wouldn’t recommend anything above 4.5 cubic feet. You can ship a fridge to the package center in Lerner, even if it’s over the three cubic feet limit. Just make sure to bring your parents, roommate, or some randos you just met during NSOP to help you carry it to your room.

Bottom line, you might be able to get away with bringing four jumbo fridges and having a fridge party, but that’s way more space than you need. Plus, it would be expensive. And speaking of expensive, remember that it’s a lot cheaper to buy your fridge at the green sale! Check them out for lots of discounted, recycled items from the frosh of yore (and by yore we mean last semester). Happy snacking!


Read on for tips about DRINKING



Written by

img August 25, 20144:20 pmimg 28 Comments

Here’s an old favorite from NSOP 2006. Send your own first night stories to tips@bwog.com to inspire the freshlings.

It’s your first day at Columbia. Mom and Dad just drove back to New Jersey, and you are ready to celebrate your newfound freedom. But wait. Shit! You’ve heard that Columbia is an awful party school. They say the only fun thing to do here is cocaine, but you don’t want to put anything in your nose. You’re planning on being pre-med; noses are for sneezing.

You want to drink. Well never fear: did you know you can overcome homesickness by drinking? Bwog contributor Will Snider channels this spirit to conjure a typical first night out during Orientation Week. So sit back, relax, and forget everything you learned from alcohol.edu. Remember, you’re pre-med. You know that shit.

10:30pm — Your Floor Meeting just ended. After learning from your RA “what it means to be part of a vibrant campus community,” you’re ready to kill some brain cells. Rob, that sort of sketchy guy on your floor who wears way too much Axe deodorant and brags about being from Buffalo, pulls out a handle of Nikolai vodka and punches you in the stomach saying, “It was made in Kentucky, so you know it’s good.” Someone brings out four shot glasses, and you chase the drinks with the Gatorade your mother bought at Sam’s Club for you. Everyone on your floor comes out to this makeshift party. Suddenly, you begin to think Columbia might not be so socially awkward after all.

10:45pm — Your floormates are now all passed out in the common room. By your seventh call to CAVA the dispatcher knows your name, and you begin to wonder why you didn’t just go to Michigan. So what if it’s a state school? You decide to venture beyond Carman Hall.

11:20pm — After your cousin’s old fake ID is rejected by 1020, Nacho’s [now defunct], the Heights, and even the Abbey (despite seeing what appear to be 12-year-old girls being admitted), you give up and begin to walk back to Carman. Out of nowhere a guy in a polo shirt who reeks of cigarettes and jungle juice assaults you. He slaps you on the ass and tells you to rush Pike—even if you’re a girl. Suddenly you find yourself in a dark room with a sticky floor, surrounded by sweaty men and girls in short skirts, and you realize you’re in a frat house. You didn’t even know Columbia had fraternities. How did all these people get into Columbia? (Hint: they were once just like you. Almost.) At the frat party you squint your eyes to find the keg in the dark.

11:34pm — While in line for the bathroom you see two guys doing lines off a coffee table. You tell them you’ve never seen cocaine before, and they tell you it’s Adderall. Suddenly one of them begins to read Dubliners. You now know what hell feels like. (more…)



Written by

img August 24, 20143:26 pmimg 8 Comments

Festive balloons, just for you!

Festive balloons, just for you!

Welcome, frosh! Today saw the slightly chaotic move-in of Barnard first-years as well as students not from New Jersey CC/SEAS international students and the farthest away domestic students. OLs greeted each car that pulled up to Carman with school-spirit-crazed cheers, Columbia didn’t card anybody for food bags and trays of hot dogs, and all was well. Freshmen: take as much free food and Columbia swag as you can, and enjoy the John Jay food while it’s still pretty good. If you’re interested in writing about anything that happened to you today, please email us at tips@bwog.com. Keep sending us tips of overheards and overseens, too.

The gossip:

  • Like last year, using the word “frat” is forbidden by OLs. Instead, you should say “fraternity and sorority life.” Other banned words include dormitories/dorm (residence halls); freshmen (first-years or new students); girls/boys/kids/babies (women/men); The College (Columbia College/Barnard College); and “the Administration” (specific deans, offices, or services). Some OLs were visibly upset about these rules.
  • Again, NSOP wristbands have a $50 replacement fee. How we miss thee, Rhea Sen.
  • Attendance is actually going to be taken at most mandatory NSOP events this year.
  • Spectator comments on Sombrerogate were used as examples of microagressions in OL training. Also at OL training, an athletics representative tried to pump up a crowd that was rollings its collective eyes about taking sports and school spirit seriously. This year, OL groups can get free party buses up to Homecoming if they really like each other.



Hit the jump to see what move-in day looked like.



Written by

img August 14, 20146:10 pmimg 13 Comments

Columbia encourages getting high

Columbia encourages getting high

Drumroll, please. Class of 2018, your newly-announced NSOP theme is “Reaching New Heights Together.” Today, Columbia issued the NSOP schedule for CC and SEAS, and here are Barnard’s and General Studies‘ if you missed them.


  • The collective Thursday night outing is the Intrepid Sea, Air, and Space Museum, which is on the USS Intrepid, “a decommissioned aircraft carrier on the Hudson River overlooking the NYC skyline.” For reference, past years have been at Victorian Gardens, the Bronx Zoo, and Governor’s Island, so this is pretty sick.
  • Neighborhood tours: Brooklyn Bridge, Downtown/Financial District, the Met, East Village, West Village, Park Slope, Williamsburg, “Just Desserts” (a tour of bakeries throughout the city), High Line/Meatpacking, South Street Seaport, Chinatown/Little Italy, Destination: NYC (famous landmarks), Soho, Brooklyn Heights, Harlem,  and 5th Avenue/Rockefeller Plaza. It’s worth going on at least one of those, and to explore the rest over your next four years.
  • Info sessions for pre-health, sciences, maths, on-campus jobs, and study abroad, a LGBTQ snack break, a “Native and Indigenous” mixer, and a Greek life cookout.
  • Required events are Under1Roof, Step Up!, a session on Sexual Violence and Gender-Based Misconduct, Reaching Healthier Heights, a security forum, academic assemblies, your first Lit Hum class (for CC students), convocation, your advising appointment, and a few other things. We’ll let you decide how mandatory these are.

There’s just over a week until you 2018-ers will be on campus for the first time together, drunkenly stumbling up to the Mudd roof reaching new heights. Frosh, send any questions you have about moving in, registering for classes, freshman year, or anything else to tips@bwog.com or our anonymous tip form, and we’ll do our best to answer them!

Eager freshmen via Shutterstock

© 2006-2015 Blue and White Publishing Inc.