As an incoming freshman, there’s not too much most people know about college. Here’s a few Quinnipiac-specific details to be aware of:

10. The Morning Walk

It’s raining. You live in Mountainview, and your first class is at the Communications building. That’s a 7 minute walk on a sunny day. At this point, you have two options: turn around and walk back to your warm dorm room with Netflix and snacks; or run with your umbrella that doesn’t really protect you from the rain that still hits you right in the face to go to a class where you might learn something you didn’t already know, only to have to run back in the same rain that pelted you on the way there. Chances are, you’ll want to Netflix and munch. You go, Glen Coco.

9. 3 AM Fire Alarms

Sound asleep, Tuesday, about 2:45 AM or so, and you are dreaming about this incredibly hot guy in your CIS class. You’re having a dinner date over sushi from the joint in the upstairs part of the Caf. He leans in to say something in your ear, could it be?! YES! He’s about to say that he lo- WAAAAAAA! WAAAAAAA! WAAAAAAA!

You hurriedly throws on your robe and exits the building into the bitter outside wind as you and your seven roommates simultaneously swear at the fire alarm that has woken the entire building and half the campus along with it. Why is the fire alarm going off? Who pulled it? Why isn’t the Rat open? Sadly, no one has these answers.

8. “No Alcohol or Drug Paraphernalia” Yeah, Right…

Part of the student contract at QU says, specifically, “no alcohol or drug paraphernalia in the dorms.” And yet, the student store sells shot glasses; for Mental Health Awareness Day, students are given free bottle openers; every other dorm has some bottle lying around or odor wafting out the door. And yet, no one minds. Everyone gets to class, there hasn’t been a major incident as long as anyone can remember. It’s college, and that’s all anyone cares …

7. Public Safety Raids

… except for Public Safety. They care a lot. If a RA sees anything, they’re required by contract to report it. That means, if they just happen to pass your room and the blinds are open, and someone carelessly left a bottle out the night before, or they can smell certain substances emitting from your room, you can bet you’ll be getting a knock on your door shortly from the men in blue. And no, you can’t leave, if you’re there, until they search everything. The ceiling tiles, the toilets, everyone’s room in-depth: everything gets searched. It’s more awkward than having your mother search your room for something she knows is there, because if you’re caught with anything you get fined about $100 and have to go to a formal hearing with a Residence Hall Director. It’ll ruin your plan for a night at Toad’s real fast.

6. Arranged Parties Aren’t That Common

Unless you happen to be walking around Commons, Larson, or Troup on a weekend evening, your chances of finding a party at all are pretty slim. Mountainview has the occasional living room party and you can hear the speakers from some dude’s room in Ledges nearly every night, but you’ll rarely hear about a pre-arranged party that isn’t in a frat house or at an actual club. But don’t worry, there’s always an improv party somewhere around campus.

5. Food is Expensive

Imagine a Medium McDonald’s cup. Now imagine that filled with chicken nuggets that are more breading than chicken. Now imagine paying $7 for that. Now imagine adding $3 for that same cup filled with fries and another $2-4 for a drink. You just spent $12 on a meal that will last you about five minutes and leave you still hungry. Now imagine that this will be half of your meals, perfect for grab-n-go, I’m-late-for-class munchies. Imagination overloaded? That’s alright, there’s plenty of space in your emptied wallet for all that imagination.

4. Seniors Like Freshmen

Red alert: this isn’t High School. Seniors aren’t going to push you into lockers or steal your lunch money. At QU, it’s rather difficult to tell who is in what class: no one wears distinctive t-shirts or badges or anything like that. There are some courses where all classes mix, and you never really know what class someone’s in until you ask. Odds are, the average Senior you meet wants to help you with your homework (some are even paid to do this). There’s even a required class, First Year Seminar, where a Junior or Senior is asked to sit in and be available to help Freshmen acclimate to their new college environment.

3. The Mountain is LITERALLY Across the Street

It’ll strike you when you first get to campus: oh, that’s a mountain. You’ll probably hike it at some point, and it’s a great view from any angle. On misty mornings, the fog haze covers the top portion and the mountain appears to reach up into the sky. It’s beautiful, really. We’re pretty proud of that hunk of rock.

2. People Want You to Visit Their Rooms

Lots of people leave their doors wide open during the day, assuming they’re there. People will be sitting in their common rooms or on their beds, doing work or talking with people. Especially during the first couple weeks, people like to wander and meet others on their floor and in their building. After that, an open door is usually on an only-if-we-know-you basis, but it can’t hurt to introduce yourself. Plus, your roommate(s) will know other people around campus, and they’ll know others, and before you know it you’ll know half the campus.

1. The Stress is Real, But So Are the Resources

Around midterm/finals time, you’ll notice everyone getting short-tempered and anxious. It’s only natural, but at QU we’ve got a pretty good community that helps with all that. Chances are, if you don’t get something in one of your classes, the cutie who sits behind you will be an expert in it: it’s a win-win for you. The Library also has fantastic research resources and aides willing to help with any unusual or awkward question you may have about research surrounding underwater basket weaving. Seriously, the amount of topics they have on file is crazy. You’ve just got to keep a level head, and it’ll turn out alright.

With these things in mind, your first year at Quinnipiac is sure to be a huge success! We wish you luck and sanity as you make the transition from High School to College.


Andy Dixon

Freshman at Quinnipiac University

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