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Prospie Guide To Days On Campus

(Still) thinking about these new developments...

Take your decision seriously. (Did you know Columbia has a replica of this famous statue on campus?!)

What’s better than writing about how much you love Columbia for your admissions essay? Actually being at Columbia, and living that love. It’s Days on Campus (again) this weekend, and Bwog has all the tips and tricks for both the already committed and the still-deciding prospies alike. (And if this guide doesn’t convince the latter, well, we don’t know what will).

What to Do Beforehand

  • You know that some (most) of the scheduled events are gonna suck, so plan a few other fun activities to do instead. Find some pals and wow them with your coolness by taking them to a campus hangout like the Hungarian Pastry Shop, Tom’s, Roti Roll, or even just like, Starbucks, tbh.
  • Look at maps of campus, MoHi, and the route from your hotel to Columbia. Seriously, nothing is more embarrassing than asking which way is uptown and downtown (Columbia is on the uptown side of Broadway, Barnard is on the downtown side).

What to Do When You’re Here

  • With your directional expertise thanks to your map studying, spend time exploring both campus and MoHi. Take a walk in Morningside Park. Smoke a blunt in Riverside. Instagram a selfie with Low. Check out our articles about the best hook up locations. Take lots of snapchats, and use all the cool geotags. Write in your diary. Draw a picture. Imagine the next four years here.

What to Pack

  • A fake ID, if you are cool enough to already have one. If not, try to borrow a friend or older sib’s. Honestly, the bouncers do not care whether it looks like you as long as it “says” you are 21. You’re gonna need that fake to hit up campus fixtures like 1020, Arts and Crafts, The Heights, and Cannons; or to buy liquor at International for all your new prospie pals (and your generous/poor student host).
  • Cigs. Whether or not you smoke, you want to look like you do. Don’t worry, you don’t need to inhale, you just need to stand outside Butler with a spirit in your hand so you can get a true feel for what it’s like to live here.
  • Headphones. Nothing will give you a better feel for campus than walking around between mandatory events, in your own world, listening to your favorite tunes (after all, this will be what much of your life consists of next year).
  • Diary. Take notes about how you feel and what you see. This is an important decision!

What Not to Pack

  • Columbia gear. You don’t want to look too eager! Plus, what if you decide not to come here, lol? You can always buy some if you want while you’re here in the bookstore.
  • Your parents (if you can, try to leave them behind).

What to Talk About

  • Please don’t regale your host or your fellow prospies with all the pointless extra-curriculars you did in high school, or your standardized test scores.
  • Talk about your actual interests. Tell some funny stories.
  • Ask your hosts questions–we love to give answers and advice, things we are so often unable to give our peers.
  • Talk about how you read Bwog because, let’s face it, you are Super Cool.
  • Talk about the Theta article in the NY Times–isn’t it crazy how many women of color were featured?–but don’t talk about wanting to join Theta (or any other sorority). You can decide when you get to campus whether or not you want to buy friends or make them for free.

What to Think About

  • Were the mandatory events stupid? Did you interact with any Barnard students? Did you get your homework done in time for your Monday classes? Are you ready to develop a nicotine addiction? Do you think you could spend four years at a school that people love to hate, but love more than they hate? Are you ready for a world to define  you, after graduation, by your Ivy League degree?
  • uh…whether you said yes or no to any of those questions…we don’t really know what we were going for…those questions are irrelevant…basically, this weekend should tell you, pretty definitively, whether you could thrive here. The feeling is different for everyone. But you’ll know.

Good luck, prospies!

The Thinker via Billy Hathorn/CC-BY-SA-3.0

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  • BC Student says:

    @BC Student Isn’t Barnard technically west and Columbia is east? Both campuses pretty much end at 120th so I’m not sure how one could distinguish one as uptown and the other as downtown???

    1. CC '14 says:

      @CC '14 Oh dear god I really hope this comment is some asshole CC kid pretending to be a Barnard student to make them look stupid…

    2. I was confused too. says:

      @I was confused too. They’re referring to the subway lines. To go downtown you need to cross to the side under Barnard and going uptown means crossing to Columbia’s side of the tracks.

      1. BC Student says:

        @BC Student Thank you for clarifying this! Makes way more sense.

      2. Um, the subway lines... says:

        @Um, the subway lines... …or more obviously, the cars driving up and down each side of broadway…

  • Wish I had known... says:

    @Wish I had known... Skip all the programming where it’s just a dean giving a speech. Total waste of your time and doesn’t actually tell you anything you want to know/need to know.

  • look at a map says:

    @look at a map are u guys fucking serious like we live in new york…there is an uptown and downtown side to every avenue…look at a map

  • Wat says:

    @Wat “Cigs. Whether or not you smoke, you want to look like you do. “

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Columbia is the best! Period.

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