Right now, freshman all across the country are knee-deep into their first month of college; the vast majority of them will do something stupid in these first few weeks. While mistakes are an essential part of the game, we’ve decided to help you look less like the wide-eyed a-hole you probably are right now. Here's our list of the top 15 freshman mistakes and what you can do to avoid them.
1. Putting Up Posters of Naked Girls
For most guys out there, their dorm room is the first real room that they have free reign over, and as a result, it’s only natural to deck it out with your favorite things. Seeing as how good-looking girls tend to be pretty high up on the average guy’s list of favorite things, it’s not surprising that certain posters often find their way onto dorm room walls. Hell, it worked for Andy Dufresne. While Kate Upton or Brooklyn Decker in a swimsuit is generally acceptable, a poster of a full-on nekked girl is a different story all together. I’d say it’s the equivalent of turning your room into an Ed Hardy T-shirt. There is a proven inverse relationship between the number of nekked girls on your wall and the number of girls who will get nekked in your bed, since any girl you manage to bring back will probably assume that you’re a chronic masturbator (and if you place it right above your bed you definitely are). Do yourself a favor and keep at least a bikini on her.
For more on posters, check out Brandon’s story from last year.
2. Intro Econ
At pretty much every college, the introductory Econ lecture is always one of the biggest, especially among freshman. Although you may not realize it, by virtue of this fact alone, it’s also one of the easiest classes to get screwed over in. A lot of people take this class thinking that it’s “How to Make Money 101.” It’s not. It’s basically some pretty simple math with dollar signs in front, plus a few graphs thrown in. Doesn’t sound too hard right? Just wait until you realize your TA can’t speak English, or worse, the class is so big that the curve gives everyone below a 95 a B. You’re better off waiting to take it in the spring semester or in a smaller seminar format if either of these two options is offered. Another reason to wait? After the first semester, you should have made some older friends through a fraternity or otherwise, giving you access to notes and old tests.
3. Ratting Out Who Supplied
It depends on how tough your school is on booze, but even if you don’t live in a state with a ridiculous “possession by consumption” law, if you get in trouble for drinking, someone at some level (it could be anyone from an RA to someone like a dean) is going to have a talk with you about the incident. Under no circ*mstances should you rat out whoever gave you the booze, especially if it was at a rush event; it’s a surefire way to get yourself blackballed (and probably not just from that particular fraternity). Just keep your mouth shut and take the slap on the wrist. No one likes a rat.
4. Coming to School With a Girlfriend
For some of you it might already be too late, but even if you’ve already left it’s not too late to make things right. And by making things right I mean break it off with your high school girlfriend immediately. The story of what happens when you go to college with a girlfriend is pretty tired at this point, so I think it suffices to say that it’s just not worth it. It’s only going to hold you up on all fronts, because every little fight that takes 5 minutes to resolve in person takes ten times as long over the phone, and pretty soon people are going to get sick of hearing about your issues.
When you do call it off, brace yourself. There’s a good chance she’ll go into psycho mode, so you might want to block her number on your phone, etc. The bottom line is that you need to completely cut off contact, otherwise you’re going to make the mess even bigger. On the off chance that she pretends like she understands and tries to act like she’s cool, you still need to keep your guard up, since it can be easy to keep talking. By cutting off contact, you’re doing two things. First, you’re allowing yourself to have fun during the one time in your life that you’ll be surrounded by more beautiful women than you’ll ever be around again. Second, if you’ve been good about the no contact, she’ll be eager to see you when you come back for Thanksgiving. Enjoy those few days with some guaranteed action and when the end of break rolls around, skip town like it never happened.
5. Flip Flops
Just because you can doesn’t always mean you should, especially when it comes to flip flops. They’re fine for when it’s warm out, but if you go to school in a place like the Northeast, know when to let go. Rolling into a section wearing flip flops and a parka is a sign that you’ve pushed it a bit too far. The same can be said for going out. My general rule of thumb is if it’s after dark, it’s too late for flip flops. There are some obvious exceptions to this rule but generally speaking, if you’re headed out to a party or a bar for the night, throw on some real shoes. More than anything, girls tend to notice what you’ve got on your feet right away, and a decent pair of kicks can go a long way. A good pair of Sperrys is always a safe bet; if she doesn’t like your boat-shoes, she’s probably not going to like your boat.