OLs were first years too, once.

Bwoggers are dynamic people. We’re involved with more on campus than just Bwog; we’re athletes (are we?), marching band-ers, student council representatives, and NSOP orientation leaders. So if you’ve ever wondered what it’s like during NSOP for an OL, you’re in luck, because we’ve got some insider info to share. 

6:30 am:  My alarm goes off. I have to be in Lerner by 7am to set up for the Columbia College assembly and First LitHum Class. By the time I arrive at 7:20ish, the chairs are all full of brand new Iliads. I go around to every single chair and lay out pins, pens, and fancy Class of 2022 bookmarks. I stuff a few pens and pins into my own bag because they’re pretty nice. Then a man from the Office of the Core (I think?) asks my opinion on whether or not they should keep giving out free copies of the Iliad. I tell him it’s stupid because everyone already has a copy by the time they arrive on campus. Maybe we should give out the Odyssey, he says. I don’t really care, I think to myself.

Noon: I finally have some free time to myself. I cook some veggies, mute my OL group chat, and settle in for a nap. Alexa, set a timer for three hours.

4pm ish: Fuck, I have to get up now. I’m meeting my students for dinner soon. By the time I meet my group near the giant John Jay dining tents, half of them have already eaten and keep asking me if they really have to stay for our ~loosely structured group chat time~. I tell them that yes, you have to stay, because this is NSOP and I’m wearing a yellow OL shirt and I said so. During our meal time we get to chatting about housing selection and the different dorm options and someone brings up EC. My students then begin swapping stories, based on either experience or urban legend, about the mysterious oasis known as East Campus. I chuckle to myself and think about how nasty and un-glamorous most EC parties are.

9pm: All of us OLs are lined up down Broadway awaiting the release of the first years for Through the Gates. Every person who gets off the subway at the 115th st and Broadway exit looks like they just walked up the stairs into some collegiate hellscape and quickly scurries away. By the time the first years actually begin their procession, our enthusiasm has died a little bit, but in true NSOP fashion, we #fakeittilwemakeit and put on some fake energy. Cue Roar Lion Roar for the umpteenth time.

Midnight: Me and my OL crew roll into Mel’s. As we’re chatting with other OLs and our upperclassmen friends, an orange wristband appears in my periphery. He walks up to me, interrupts our conversation, and asks me for my name. I see his orange wristband posse waiting and watching at the bar. I chuckle and turn to walk away in a way that’s half awkward & half rude. Sorry, pal. You must be this tall to ride.

1:30 am: Exhausted, we roll into Koronets. As I’m ordering a slice of pizza I look over and, lo and behold, it’s one of my first years. He starts to chat with me and I slowly back away in a sad attempt to hide. By the time I’m back at the table with my friends, he’s left without saying goodbye. I feel sorta bad. But not really.

Image via one of the many mysterious Bwog OLs