July 18, 2019 | 78° F

Learn from college experiences

I am graduating this semester, and in 17 days I will no longer be a Rutgers student. My experiences here have been unforgettable, and I am truly glad that I made the decision to come here. Rutgers is such a diverse school with so many things to do that if you tried to experience them all, you would never have time for classes. So as my parting column, I would like to reveal my top 10 favorite things that I have done with my time here.

1. Skip class when it's raining. I know everyone likes to skip out when its 70 degrees and sunny, but never underestimate a good snuggle day with your roommates. A good movie and some mindless conversations can give anyone the day off they need without tiring you out.

2. Do something that is so much fun you forget to take pictures of it. I know that we all love to have thousands of pictures of every little thing we do at college, but for once, let yourself get so wrapped up in the moment that you don't even think of anything else.

3. Never eat a fat sandwich. I am proud to say that I may be part of the 1 percent of students who has not eaten a "Fat Daryl" or some other disgusting concoction of fried meat and potatoes that equals somewhere up to 2,000 calories. I know they are a landmark and tradition at Rutgers, but that is a surefire way to gain the freshman 15 and set yourself up for a heart attack by age 30.

4. Get drunk and play board games. Everyone can play pong or flip cup until your fingers fall off, but a board game — now that's fun. Try having to maneuver that after a few screwdrivers. My roommates and I still have jokes from the first night we moved in together from playing board games. It's a great way to have fun and do something different.

5. People watch. We are one of the most diverse campuses in the entire country, so enjoy it. Just sit on a bench in front of any of the student centers and observe. There are so many things that you can see and learn. Don't do it to make fun of people because that is just mean-spirited, but do it purely to enjoy the fact that at no other time in your life will you be surrounded by this kind of diversity coexisting so peacefully.

6. Look at the stars over on College Farm Road. I know that you can still see the shooting stars from your residence hall or porch, but it doesn't compare to the pitch black night over on Cook campus. There are no lights so you can really see the sky, and living in this city it's nice to see the stars every once in a while.

7. Play tag. We are college kids; we have infinite excuses to do stupid things. So why not use them to do something fun. I can guarantee you that it will be the most fun you have had since fifth grade gym.

8. Walk around or go to the gym without an iPod. If you don't have headphones on, you are more approachable and you can talk to people. Make a friend on the bus or at least shoot the breeze about the weather. If nothing else, you can hear some really awesome conversations that people have when they think no one is listening.

9. Walk or ride your bike in between campuses (during the daytime that is). It really is relaxing to just spend some time outside — and I know with all of your class work, clubs and who knows what else — you just don't have time. So take 10 extra minutes and just walk; you will really enjoy it.

10. Speak up when something makes you angry. That's how I started writing for The Daily Targum, and it's one of my favorite experiences at the University. You never know who will listen to you and who may actually think your opinion is worth something.

Notice how none of these things had to do with going to football games, or joining a greek organization. So do something different and make your experience at Rutgers your own. Don't be a cookie-cutter college student. Sure, being a member of every club is nice, but don't forget about the fun things that you cannot find in any club. Have fun and don't do things for your résumé, because in 10 years your résumé is just a piece of paper, but the friends you make and the experiences you have will last in your heart forever.

Anna Norcia is a School of Environmental and Biological Sciences senior majoring in nutritional sciences. Her column, "Just the Facts," runs on alternate Mondays.


Anna Norcia

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